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The nuclear energy community was abuzz with news of a nuclear fusion breakthrough at the end of last year. Yet, while fusion innovation offers the promise of a bright future, there’s a more pertinent issue facing the industry today: an antiquated regulatory environment that’s stifling clean nuclear energy development.

The Vogtle Electric Generating Plant in Georgia made headlines when its new Unit 3 began loading fuel in October of last year, but after a minor setback during pre-operational testing, Georgia Power was left with no choice but to file a license amendment for the plant through the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). A seemingly small problem – vibrations that require a pipe brace – is set to cost the company one million dollars per day, and it’s estimated that relicensing will take at least a month. 

Originally published on api.realclear.com, part of the TownNews Content Exchange.

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