The cost of nuclear electricity: France after Fukushima

The cost of nuclear electricity: France after Fukushima

The Fukushima disaster has lead the French government to release novel cost information relative to its nuclear electricity program allowing us to compute a levelized cost. We identify a modest escalation of capital cost and a larger than expected operational cost. Under the best scenario, the cost of French nuclear power over the last four decades is 59 €/MWh (at 2010 prices) while in the worst case it is 83 €/MWh. On the basis of these findings, we estimate the future cost of nuclear power in France to be at least 76 €/MWh and possibly 117 €/MWh. A comparison with the US confirms that French nuclear electricity nevertheless remains cheaper. Comparisons with coal, natural gas and wind power are carried out to the advantage of these.

Source: Social Science Research Network. Boccard, Nicolas, The Cost of Nuclear Electricity: France after Fukushima (November 12, 2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2353305 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2353305

Date: September 2013

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