Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy, on the Future of Nuclear Power

Mark Flanagan of NEI is highlighting a CFR interview with Duke Energy’s CEO, James E. Rogers, in which he talks about the future of the energy industry – and the importance of nuclear energy not only for our CO2-free energy future, but also for our economy:

But the difference in the jobs is quite different, because if you’re wiping off a solar panel, it’s sort of a minimum wage type of job, [with] much higher compensation for nuclear engineers and nuclear operators. If our goal is to rebuild the middle class, nuclear plays a key role there, particularly if coal is out of the equation.

He also talks about the U.S. regaining its role as the leader in nuclear energy:

People forget that [the United States was] the innovator of nuclear energy. We developed the technologies. And what people have also forgotten is that 20 percent of our electricity comes from nuclear, and that we produce twice the amount of electricity from nuclear than any country in the world. We sit here today, not turning dirt on a single nuclear plant. [. . .] We have a competitive advantage on building nuclear, on building recycling to address the spent fuel, and that would be a great loss of opportunity if we don’t find a way to seize it and rebuild the supply.

Like Mark Flanagan said, we could spend all day highlighting great lines from this interview, but it would probably be better if you just read the interview for yourself.  You should also know that Duke Energy is teaming up with AREVA on the ADAGE joint venture focusing on the biopower sector. ADAGE was recently in the news because JEA, the energy company for Jacksonville, Florida, announced that it plans to power 40,000 homes with power generated from ADAGE’s biomass plants.  We’re proud to be working with Duke Energy and Jim Rogers, who clearly “gets it” when it comes to the future of energy generation in the U.S.