The North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market is expected to rise at a CAGR of approximately 9% during 2020 - 2025. Factors such as increasing the installation of renewable energy that is cleaner and more economical are likely to drive the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market. However, the high cost of decommissioning nuclear plants is expected to restrain the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market.
• Commercial power reactor due to being uneconomical un-economical in comparison to other energy sources is expected to be the largest segment and is likely to dominate the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market during the forecast period.
• Increasing the use of robots and artificial intelligence in the decommissioning of the nuclear reactor is safer and is likely going to create several for the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market in the future.
• Because of being the largest producer of nuclear energy and one of the earliest countries to generate nuclear power, the United States is now decommissioning many of its old nuclear plants, which is expected to be the largest market for the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning.
Key Market Trends
Commercial Power Reactor Expected to Dominate the Market
• The commercial power reactors are the nuclear reactors that are mainly used for generating electricity. Most of these reactors are being installed in nuclear power plants. Moreover, increasing renewable energy from solar and wind is much cheaper and cleaner.
• The countries in the region, such as the United States and Canada are decommissioning its old and out-dated nuclear power plants that are safe or economical in use. This is likely to drive the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market.
• In 2019, the total electricity produced by nuclear energy in North America was 963.7 terawatt-hours (TWh), almost the same as the region produced in 2018, 963.2 TWh. The slow-growing or flatness of the nuclear energy curve in the region shows that the nuclear power reactors' decommissioning will surpass the installation of new nuclear plants in the region.
• In April 2020, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) has signed a contract with Canadian nuclear engineering firm Kinectrics to provide decommissioning engineering support. Under the agreement, Kinectrics is planning to hire five KHNP experts in the dismantling of nuclear power plants for one year to carry out the management of decommissioning waste and the development of process projects for the dismantling of pressurized heavy water (Candu) reactors at the Bruce, Darlington and Pickering nuclear power plants.
• Hence, owing to the above points, the commercial power reactor is likely going to dominate the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market during the forecast period.
United States Expected to Dominate the Market
• The United States is one of the largest nuclear power producers globally, accounting for almost 30% of the global nuclear power generated in 2019. The country's nuclear reactors produced 852 TWh of electricity in 2019, representing a slight increase of 0.35% over the previous year’s value. The old nuclear plants that are ready to retire are likely to drive the nuclear power reactor decommissioning market.
• Over the past decade, intense competition from electricity generation using low-cost shale gas has hurt the competitiveness of the country's nuclear power industry. Moreover, record low wholesale electricity prices and the high cost of life extension (PLEX) upgrades have driven early nuclear plant retirements.
• In 2019, the total nuclear power installed capacity in the United States was 98 gigawatts (GW), which was less than the country's installed capacity of 2018, 99 GW. The decreasing capacity exhibits the retirements, and the de-rating of some reactors is likely to result in less total nuclear electricity generation capacity in 2050 than in 2019.
• As the era of nuclear power winds down in the United States, the decommissioning of nuclear power plants is becoming a significant industry. Private companies are acquiring these plants, taking over their licenses, liability, decommissioning funds, and waste contracts. Around 38 reactors with a combined capacity of 17.54 GWe were shut down, and there are two reactors under construction phase as of 2019. In addition to this, around 198 reactors are expected to shut down by 2030.
• Hence, owing to the above points, the United States is expected to dominate the North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning market during the forecast period.
The North America nuclear power reactor decommissioning is moderately fragmented. Some of the key players in this market include EnergySolutions, AECOM,NorthStar Group Services, Inc, Hydro-Québec, and Orano SA.
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