The UK should focus on developing small modular reactors (SMRs) to secure its nuclear industry after the country’s exit from the European Union, according to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE). In its report Leaving the EU, the Euratom Treaty Part 2: A Framework for the Future, issued on 5 May, IMechE says SMRs could “present the UK with key export opportunities and return the country to the international nuclear reactor supply arena”. In the document, which follows the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Select Committee report into the risks to the nuclear industry posed by Brexit, IMechE has outlined “possible pathways” the UK government could take to leaving the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) regarding key issues such as safeguarding, Nuclear Cooperation Agreements, research and development, and regulation. It also recommends the UK develops its own ‘safeguarding office’, to ensure the country conforms to international rules on safety and non-proliferation. It adds, however, the UK should remain an associate member of Euratom for the specific purpose of R&D.
World Nuclear News 8th May 2017 read more »