Renewables More Effective for Carbon Reduction


An analysis of 123 countries over 25 year period of data collected from the World Bank and International Energy Agency by the University of Sussex Business School, UK and the International School of Management in Munich, Germany conclude that “diverse renewables are generally proving, in the real world, to be crucially more effective than nuclear power at reducing climate disruption.”  Accordingly, “If countries want to lower emissions as substantially, rapidly and cost-effectively as possible, they should prioritize support for renewables, rather than nuclear power.” As Beyond Nuclear has recognized, it is dangerously irrational to continue to pursue nuclear power as a energy policy and climate crisis abatment strategy.

The paper published in Nature Energy is entitled “Differences in carbon emissions reduction between countries pursuing renewable electricity versus nuclear power” by Sovacool, Schmid, Stirling, Walter and MacKerron. Accordingly, “The authors find it “troubling” that it “appears that countries planning large-scale investments in new nuclear power are risking the suppression of greater climate benefits from alternative renewable energy investments.” Nuclear and renewable energy are mutually antagonistic for investment, policy and deployment where one will crowd out the other.”  The challenge becomes choosing between entrenched or democratically-selected interests.

Now, according to one of the paper’s authors, Patick Schmid, “In certain large country samples the relationship between renewable electricity and CO2-emissions is up to seven times stronger than the corresponding relationship for nuclear.” Nuclear power is not only  increasingly unreliable as a climate mitigation strategy, its construction and financing costs continue to skyrocket making project completion and deployment increasingly a risky and unreliable. Meanwhile, renewable energy as diverse and  innovative technologies are increasingly less expensive making it more and more economically attractive with reliable deployment.

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