World Bank should support all clean energy technologies

Press release issued 12 December 2017

The World Bank Group said today that it will stop investing in upstream oil and gas, and will provide analysis to support efforts towards a transition away from coal in an announcement at the One Planet Summit, being held today in Paris, France.

However, efforts to transition to a clean energy mix could be hampered by the World Bank’s insistence that it doesn’t “do nuclear energy”. 

Agneta Rising, Director General, World Nuclear Association, said: 

“The World Bank should be held responsible for not supporting equally all clean technologies. The International Energy Agency’s Sustainable Development Scenario makes it clear that achieving both our environmental objectives and our global development goals will require a mix of clean energy technologies, including nuclear energy, in order to supply reliable, 24/7 low-carbon electricity to meet the world’s needs.” 

The World Bank’s president, Jim Yong Kim, has previously stated that the World Bank Group does not engage in providing support for nuclear power and instead focusses on finding ways of working with hydropower, geothermal, solar and wind. 

Agneta Rising added:

"The World Bank has an outdated policy that doesn’t make the most of all clean technologies, especially the services nuclear gives to society and the electricity system. The IEA recognises that nuclear has a key role to play. We expect the World Bank to do the same.” 

“If we are going to achieve a sustainable energy future that protects the planet we will need to make the best use of all low-carbon options. The global nuclear industry has set a target of supplying 25% of the world’s electricity by 2050, which would require the construction of 1000 GWe of new nuclear capacity. The World Bank should help support this goal, rather than arbitrarily exclude vital low-carbon options such as nuclear energy.” 

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