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The Impact of Climate Change on Nuclear Power Supply

Kristin Linnerud, Torben K. Mideksa and Gunnar S. Eskeland

Year: 2011
Volume: Volume 32
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol32-No1-6
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Abstract:
A warmer climate may result in lower thermal efficiency and reduced load--including shutdowns--in thermal power plants. Focusing on nuclear power plants, we use different European datasets and econometric strategies to identify these two supply-side effects. We find that a rise in temperature of 1rC reduces the supply of nuclear power by about 0.5% through its effect on thermal efficiency; during droughts and heat waves, the production loss may exceed 2.0% per degree Celsius because power plant cooling systems are constrained by physical laws, regulations and access to cooling water. As climate changes, one must consider measures to protect against and/or to adapt to these impacts.





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