Here are the top 10 nuclear power-producing countries in the world, sorted by net installed capacity:
- 🇺🇸 United States – 120 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides 20% of electricity
- 🇫🇷 France – 63 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides 70% of electricity
- 🇨🇳 China – 50 GW net installed capacity, the third-largest producer of nuclear energy
- 🇯🇵 Japan – Prior to the Fukushima disaster had 30 GW net installed capacity, now provides 6% of electricity
- 🇷🇺 Russia – 28 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides 20% of electricity
- 🇰🇷 South Korea – 23.2 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides one-third of electricity
- 🇨🇦 Canada – 13.9 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides 15% of electricity
- 🇺🇦 Ukraine – 13.8 GW net installed capacity, nuclear power provides half of electricity
- 🇬🇧 UK – 9.6 GW net installed capacity spread across eight operational reactors
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Just over 7 GW net installed capacity, the government intends to phase out reactors
As a blogger with a keen interest in STEM and a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, I am always fascinated by the latest technological advancements in the world. Nuclear power has always been a topic of great interest to me. It is a powerful source of energy with the potential to meet the growing energy needs of the world while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
In this blog post, I am excited to present to you the Top 10 Nuclear Powered Countries in the world. Through thorough research and analysis, I have compiled a comprehensive list that ranks countries based on their nuclear power generation capacity.
To write this article, I have relied on a variety of reliable sources, including:
These sources provide the most up-to-date and accurate information on nuclear power generation around the world.
Join me as we delve into the fascinating world of nuclear power and explore the top 10 countries leading the way in this field. Let’s discover how these countries are harnessing the power of nuclear energy to drive their economies forward and shape the future of energy production.
The use of nuclear energy is an important step in the transition to more sustainable long-term energy solutions, as it produces far fewer pollutants and greenhouse gases than conventional fuels. This makes it a great option for countries looking to reduce their emissions and meet their climate goals. As such, the development of nuclear power generation capacity has become increasingly important for many countries around the world.
This article will provide an introduction to nuclear power and its impact on global climate change, followed by a list of the top 10 countries with the largest installed nuclear power capacities. The information presented here is intended to give a basic understanding of global trends when it comes to nuclear energy production, but should not be taken as exhaustive nor definitive.
It’s also important to keep in mind that sustainable solutions like renewable energy sources should remain a top priority irrespective of any transitory solution like Nuclear Energy which can buy us time before global clean energy solutions are fully developed.
Spain is one of the top 10 countries that generate nuclear power. In 2019, seven nuclear reactors generated 7.1 gigawatts (GW) of electricity in the country and accounted for 22% of Spain’s electricity installed capacity.
This is an impressive achievement, given that the number of reactor lifts limits to the life and safety conditions imposed by international standards. Currently, operating lifespans have been extended in four Spanish reactors while their Safety Tests are re-performed and their compliance requirements are confirmed on regular basis.
This is a major push from Spain’s government to increase nuclear energy as a viable form of generating more electricity for citizens in an environmentally friendly way.
Moreover, these efforts urge other developed countries to invest more in renewable energy sources rather than carbon-intensive resources such as fossil fuels or coal plants, as nuclear power can reduce emissions significantly with little environmental impact.
Nuclear energy also includes part of Spain’s long-term commitment to meeting EU targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and acting on climate change mitigation strategies in keeping with its commitments under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change (COP 21).
In conclusion, Spain continues to be one of the world leaders in nuclear power production – proving that it is indeed possible for sustainable development goals to be achieved in a meaningful way when sound policies are implemented effectively by governments around the world.
The United Kingdom (UK) is one of the leading nuclear energy producers in the world. In 2019, UK generated 51 Terawatt-hours (TwWh) of nuclear energy with a combined net nuclear energy capacity of 8.9 Gigawatts (GW).
The national energy supply mix has an estimated share of 15% from nuclear, 37.6% from natural gas, 26.6% form biomass/waste/other renewables, and 20.8% from wind with solar contributing less than 1%.
UK has 13 operable nuclear reactors providing about 22.5 GW combined power generation capacity with an average age of 34 years. In 2019 8 rectors were retired and planned for decommissioning under the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority program.
The UK government is focused on increasing nuclear power production and reducing Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions through their policy roadmap promoting investments in large-scale projects, based on advanced reactor concepts using integrated small modular reactors (SMRs).
Two new Nuclear reactors: Hinkley Point C1 and Hinkley Point C2 started construction in 2019 and are expected to become operational by 2025 to increase total generation capacity to 24 GW which will be sufficient to cater to up to 17 million homes electricity needs in UK.
To boost research and development activities around small modular reactor designs, the UK government also announced £18 million in funding in 2020 March which will contribute significantly to increasing their capability to build better-advanced reactor systems that are cost-effective and efficient while reducing greenhouse emissions associated with its traditional sources to meet its legally binding commitment reducing emissions by 80 percent by 2050 compared with 1990 levels.
Ukraine is ranked ninth among the top ten nuclear power countries with a combined net installed capacity of 13.1gw from 15 operable nuclear reactors, according to the World Nuclear Association. As well as having their own nuclear-fueled energy plants, Ukraine proactively purchases fuel from US-based Westinghouse helping to secure the stability of energy supply to their citizens.
The country first began utilizing nuclear power in 1977 when they activated the Rovno 4 reactor in the Chernobyl plant and since then have been looking for ways to ensure efficient production while maintaining cost-effectiveness. In addition to providing around half of its domestic electricity needs through nuclear generation, Ukraine is actively engaged in R&D projects aimed at increasing capabilities such as small modular reactor designs which may offer a new way forward for developing countries or countries which are not used to relying on large scale nuclear generation systems.
Ukraine has also taken steps towards becoming an international leader in the responsible handling of waste materials produced by its plants. In 2017 it created a national action plan for the effective management of radioactive waste following extensive negotiations with international organizations such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
These initiatives demonstrate Ukraine’s commitment to maintaining a secure energy supply using technology that takes into account social and environmental impact, positioning them as an example to other developing nations seeking sustainable energy solutions that prioritize safety and sustainability without sacrificing efficiency or profitability.
Canada is one of the top 10 nuclear power countries in the world, with a total nuclear generation capacity of 13.6GW. Canada has 19 operational nuclear reactors which in 2019 generated 94.9TWh of nuclear energy, accounting for close to 15% of the country’s total electricity production.
The type of reactors used in Canada are Canadian Deuterium–Uranium (CANDU) reactors which offer safety and economic performance benefits, ensuring reliable energy production and making it more cost effective than other options. This type of reactor includes deuterium–uranium fuel bundles linked to reflector tubes and surrounded by heavy water that provides neutron moderation. CANDU reactors can be loaded or unloaded while active, allowing them to respond rapidly to changes in electricity demand.
This makes them great sources of alternative energy that is both safe and efficient as they provide a great way to reduce emissions without sacrificing reliability or performance. Additionally, their self-contained cooling systems allow thermal output to be adjusted rapidly without re-shutting down the reactor due to outside weather conditions like extreme temperatures or humidity—essential factors when considering these types of safety precautions.
Overall, Canada’s legacy as one of the top 10 nuclear power countries remains strong, providing essential clean energy solutions for its citizens and businesses alike.
South Korea is one of the top ten nuclear power countries in the world, with 24.5GW of nuclear generation and 24 reactors in operation. Nearly 30% of electricity generation in South Korea is provided by nuclear power, making it a major player in the industry. The southeastern region of the country is a major hub for high electricity demand and accounts for most of the country’s nuclear power production.
The Korean government has identified nine regional areas as potential sites for constructing new reactors while also upgrading and maintaining existing plants. Of these nine areas, only three currently contain operating reactors: Uljin County on the east coast, Yeonggwang County on the southwest coast, and Wolseong County in central Seoul. New plants are being built at Gori and Youngkwang counties as well as at an offshore platform off Uljin county for a total capacity of 4 GW by 2020–25.
In order to fulfill this goal, South Korea plans to invest heavily into research and development (R&D) involving nuclear energy technologies including fuel rods, reprocessing technology and advanced reactors. Additionally, South Korea is working to design their own 1000 Megawatt Pressurized Water Reactor that will be used solely within their utilities sector by 2029 or 2030. This commitment towards further development shows that they are determined to remain part of the top ten nations when it comes to generating nuclear power generation capacity.
Russia is one of the top ten producers of nuclear electricity in the world and is home to 38 operating reactors with a net capacity of 29.6 gigawatts (GW). According to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), nuclear generation accounted for 17.5% of Russia’s overall power production in 2019. Additionally, it produced 195.5 terawatts hour (TWh) of nuclear energy that same year from plants located across nine regions throughout the country.
Two reactors are currently under construction as part of Russia’s Kursk II project, a large-scale expansion that is projected to double the net capacity for Russian nuclear plants by 2021. The nation has also set ambitious goals for its future growth, hoping to achieve 110 GW by 2035 through investment and improvements in safety standards at all existing plants. This advancement would serve to reduce greenhouse gas emissions significantly and bring greater energy security to the nation in terms of both its internal supply and overseas exportability.
Beyond business strategy, Russia’s adoption of nuclear power technology has enriched its relationships with neighboring countries who have taken part in bilateral collaborations such as joint reactor construction projects or procurement/transport agreements on uranium supplies. This demonstrates that while safety and efficiency come first, there are many additional benefits that result from harnessing this form of energy production which can establish partnerships at both political and commercial levels across nations worldwide.
Japan is one of the top ten nuclear power countries in the world, having 32gw of nuclear generation capacity and 33 operational nuclear plants with a net installed capacity of 31.7 Gigawatts. Japan also has two reactors under construction – Ohma 1 and Shimane 3, though their future remains uncertain as the Japanese government takes a measured approach to restarting their nuclear power industry after the Fukushima disaster.
In comparison to other countries in the world, Japan is lagging behind in terms of developing new nuclear power sources, but it still holds one of the highest per-capita amounts of net installed capacity. The country’s gradual shift away from using fossil fuels for energy generation has seen electricity produced mainly by hydroelectric and natural gas, with lighter emphasis placed on nuclear energy due to concerns about safety. This has slowly changed over time however, with Japan gradually updating its regulations and taking further steps toward rehabilitating public confidence in what was once an important source of energy for everyday life.
Even before this shift, Japan already had relatively stringent safety protocols in place which have since been updated even further due to lessons learned from the Fukushima incident. This includes more frequent inspections, better automation systems, as well as emergency support for communities located near active plants, should an incident occur.
Nuclear projects are also highly scrutinized by both government officials and citizens, considered thoughtfully when deciding which plans move forward before construction begins. All this goes to show that while its current position may be less than impressive when compared to other nations around the world, it is progress that continues to be made when it comes to advancing their use of reliable sources such as nuclear power technologies here in Japan.
China is one of the top 10 nuclear power countries in the world. The country’s nuclear generation is 50.8 gigawatts (GW) via 51 operating nuclear reactors and six under construction. China has increased its net installed nuclear capacity from 8 GW to 50.8 GW since 2010 and currently has plans to continue to grow its power systems with 18 additional reactors expected to begin operations soon, followed by another 39 plants that are in various stages of planning, design and construction on the mainland as part of its 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025).
The plans for expansion mainly focus on a high-velocity development strategy for China’s three major large scale commercial reactor designs – the Hualong One “HPR1000”, Advanced Passive 1000 (ACP1000) and ACPR1000+ series – supported by growing industrial capacity and a supportive policy environment that provides capital funding, loans and other incentives for new constructions.
The Chinese government has also explored advanced technologies such as molten salt reactors (MSRs), small modular reactors (SMRs) as well as fourth-generation high-temperature gas cooled reactors (HTGRs).
Furthermore, China is also seeking collaboration with partner countries including Russia, France, UK and USA—partnering with Rosatom on HTGRs; Westinghouse pursuing AP1000 technology; investing in proposed EDF CANDU/European pressurised reactor plant proposal for Fujian; involvement in EDF SMR project; financing CGN projects abroad such as Hualong One at Chasma 3/4 in Pakistan; proposing new joint ventures in South Africa—all testament to a wider ambition to adopt those expertises not homegrown but available through global sources.
France is one of the top 10 nuclear power countries in the world, according to 2019 estimates from the World Nuclear Association. This European nation boasts an impressive 56 operational nuclear reactors that generate 60.2 gigawatts (GW) of nuclear generation capacity – making it the second-largest nuclear energy-producing country in the world behind the United States.
Last year, 379 terawatt hours (TWh) of nuclear energy were produced in France – a vast majority of which was used for electricity generation. Given how strong France’s economy is and its increasing dependence on nuclear energy, this number has been projected to continue growing over time, especially as more and more solar and wind capacities start to come online across the region.
Nuclear reactor technology has also advanced significantly since 2001, when France opened its first third-generation plant at Flamanville. This modernized facility is approximately 15 times more efficient than its predecessor – showcasing just how resilient and efficient France’s nuclear infrastructure has become over time.
It’s clear why France continues to lead Europe in this sector – with its reliable sources of clean and secure energy contributing significant value to both its economy and environment alike. With continued advancements in integrative technology and stringent safety regulations, it would be unsurprising if French influence eventually outweighs most other nations involved in similar arms races for global leadership positions in terms of comprehensive clean energy production measures worldwide.
The United States is the largest nuclear energy-producing country in the world. With a total of 93 operational nuclear reactors and a net installed capacity generation of 95.7gw, it generated 809.4twh in 2019 which is approximately 19% of the global nuclear generation. Apart from that, the United States has the highest number of new nuclear projects with an expected commissioning up to 2027.
In terms of developing and deploying advanced reactor technologies, the U.S Department Of Energy has invested $1 billion to foster technologies such as small modular reactors, advanced boiling water reactors and high-temperature gas cooled reactors in order to deliver clean, reliable and cost-effective electricity for many years to come. Moreover, various state governments have implement policies such as tax credits for advanced reactor construction investment which benefit nuclear energy developers nationwide.
In conclusion, with new legislations and advanced technologies being developed, it can be expected that the United States will remain one of the top 10 nuclear power countries in 2021 and beyond.
In conclusion, nuclear energy is an important component of the global energy mix, not only for providing clean and affordable electricity to billions of people around the world but also for supporting economic growth in many countries. It is necessary for countries to continue advancing nuclear technology for safe and efficient operations, as well as investing in sustainable and low-carbon energy sources like renewables.
While the top 10 countries producing nuclear power have exhibited tremendous growth, emerging nations will need to invest in reliable and safe nuclear power infrastructure if they are to achieve their goals of providing a clean energy future. Developing countries need to learn from these ten leading nations who have demonstrated an ability to sustain success with this resource while continuing the fight against climate change.
Additionally, all stakeholders – from policy makers and industry professionals to private investors and citizens – need to recognize the importance of this form of energy in order to realize a secure global economy and a healthier environment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the top 10 nuclear power countries?
A: According to the 2016 World Nuclear Industry Status Report, the top 10 nuclear power countries are the United States, France, China, Russia, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Germany, Japan, Canada, and India.
Q: How much of the world’s energy is generated by nuclear power?
A: In 2019, nuclear energy generated about 10.3% of the world’s electricity.
Q: What is the most nuclear power generated country?
A: The United States is the most nuclear power generated country, with a total of 99 nuclear reactors and a capacity of about 101.4 gigawatts.