World nuclear performance to be highlighted at annual Symposium


For immediate release from World Nuclear Association
4 September 2018


The performance of nuclear power plants worldwide will be highlighted at the World Nuclear Association Symposium, which will be held from 5-7 September. The conference, which will bring together nearly 600 nuclear leaders and experts, will see the full release of the World Nuclear Performance Report 2018.

Among the key points to be raised are:

  • Electricity generation was up for the fifth year running, exceeding 2,500 TWh and meeting more than 10% of global electricity demand.
  • Reactor performance remained high, with an average capacity factor of 81.1%, maintaining a 20-year record of high capacity factors.
  • Construction time for new reactors averaged 58 months, twice as fast as the historic peak of the late 1990s.

In her opening address Agneta Rising, Director General, World Nuclear Association, will say that “Reactors are being built faster and operated better. New reactor designs are coming on-line and starting to deliver electricity.”

However, challenging market conditions are constraining nuclear generation, with reactors facing closure in the US because of excessive subsidies to renewables and a failure to penalise the emissions from coal and gas. Markets are also failing to recognise the service to the grid nuclear reactors provide through their reliable and stable generation available even in extreme weather conditions.

Rising will say “Good nuclear plants are threatened with closure because they are operating in failing markets.” 

Worldwide, more than 25GW of new nuclear capacity are expected to start up in 2018-19, but the rate of new connections will need to increase to around 33 GW a year to reach the nuclear industry’s Harmony goal of supplying 25% of global electricity by 2050, as part of a reliable, clean and affordable mix that sees all low-carbon generation working together to deliver electricity 24/7.

Rising will say “There is no sustainable energy future without nuclear energy.”

Notes To Editors

World Nuclear Association is the international organisation that represents the global nuclear industry. Its mission is to promote a wider understanding of nuclear energy among key international influencers by producing authoritative information, developing common industry positions, and contributing to the energy debate, as well as to pave the way for expanding nuclear business.

The World Nuclear Association Symposium will be held 5-7 September in London. World Nuclear Association Direct General will be speaking at the opening of the conference at 9:00 on 6 September. Full details are available at, including registration for press.

The new hardcopy edition of World Nuclear Performance Report will be issued to all delegates. An online version and high resolution graphics can be downloaded from

For press queries, please contact:

Jonathan Cobb
+44 20 7451 1536