Economic and Social Considerations for the Future of Nuclear Energy in Society

ECOSENS aims to create a neutral space where specialists in social sciences (including economics, sociology, Science and Technology Studies, among others) and humanities and in nuclear energy research and policy will meet, exchange views and collaborate with civil society and other relevant stakeholders in order to:

●        Provide a societal perspective on the development and use of existing and new nuclear technologies, in the context of major societal challenges: climate crisis, sustainable development and energy security, by opening up the technoscientific issues to the social, political, cultural and ethical context, in order to guide policies in the nuclear field.

●        Provide an assessment of nuclear energy sustainability considering the entire life cycle of the current nuclear technologies, possible evolutions of the energy markets and nuclear technologies in the transition toward climate neutrality, and the societal perspective in order to reveal and evaluate the possible roles of nuclear power in the future;

●        Provide a radically new economic model, based on the System of Provision (SoP), for the assessment of nuclear energy, overcoming the key weaknesses of existing economic models, providing a suite of indicators relevant not just for the investors (e.g. equity holders) but for a broad variety of stakeholders (e.g. consumers, governments, suppliers). 

News

Panel discussion on SMRs in RICOMET

The panel discussion on “Public participation in decisions related to Small Modular nuclear Reactors (SMRs)”, will be organised on June 10 (16:00-17:35) in Ljubljana (Slovenia), in the framework of the European project ECOSENS (Economic and Social Considerations for the Future of Nuclear Energy in Society, https://ecosens-project.eu/).

Local communities’ workshop to discuss how to prepare for new nuclear facilities

The Group of European Municipalities with Nuclear Facilities (GMF Europe) and the French association of municipalities hosting nuclear facilities (ARCICEN) are co-organising a seminar on “the role of local communities in the energy transition: new nuclear developments” on 23-24 May 2024 in Saint Vulbas, Ain (France). The seminar aims to contribute to the strategic reflection on the opportunities, challenges, concerns and expectations from local communities regarding the new nuclear developments.

ECOSENS draft deliverable in WP3 – A System of Provision approach for nuclear power

A new draft deliverable entitle A beta version of the System of Provisions model has been elaborated by POLIMI (Politecnico di Milano) and the University of Cassino and Southern Lazio (UNICAS). In order to obtain the feedback and to discuss the used method and presented French example, the ECOSENS WP3 workshop has been organised on 14.2.2024 with ECOSENS partners, advisory board members and EC project officer. The remarks and exchanges will be used to finalize this new model.

ECOSENS Newsletter – No.1 – December 2023

Inside the issue

  • ECOSENS first year
  • Short news from WPs
  • Deliverables and publications
  • ECOSENS engagement opportunities

New ECOSENS deliverables available

Three new ECOSENS deliverables  representing the complete package of documents necessary for the assessment of the sustainability of nuclear energy to be carried out in the project are now available on the project webpage.

An ECOSENS Stakeholder Webinar Report is available

The ECOSENS project  continued stakeholder discussions this summer with consideration of the major drivers of energy demand. A webinar (as well as a short discussion at the ECOSENS Scientific Event) critically examined project assumptions on the state of energy demand in 2050.

First ECOSENS public event

The first ECOSENS Scientific Event entitled “Powering the Future Responsibly: Assessing the Sustainability of Nuclear Energy” was held on August 29 2023 in Dessel, Belgium back to back with RICOMET conference.

Stakeholders have agreed the first ECOSENS International Workshop reports

The ECOSENS project started with two international workshops intended to discuss with societal stakeholders possible and desired energy futures in general and the sustainability assessment of renewable and nuclear energy options in particular. At this time, readers can download the public report of both the First International Workshop “The art and science of imagining energy futures” and the Second International Workshop “Decarbonizing Europe’s energy system: Checking and choosing indicators for a sustainability assessment” (Brussels, 29-30 March 2023). The reports have been reviewed and agreed by the stakeholder participants, whom we thank for their rich input to the workshops.

Panellists at the first ECOSENS Scientific Event end of August 2023

ECOSENS project will organise the first Scientific Event “Powering the Future Responsibly: Assessing the Sustainability of Nuclear Energy” on 29th of August 2023 in Tabloo, Dessel, Belgium, from 13.30-17.00. It will focus on sustainability assessment methodology integrating a societal perspective on Europe’s future energy system. One part of event will be devoted panel discussion with panellists coming from organised local society, industry, NGOs, research and citizens. Draft agenda with panellists is available here. You are kindly invited to register at http://www.ricomet.eu/.

 

2050 Here & Now Scenario Workshop, 29 August 2023, Dessel, Belgium

The ECOSENS project will convene a workshop allowing societal stakeholders to delve into climate and energy futures and gauge the influence of disruptive climate change events on potential evolutions in citizen energy choices.  The “2050 Here & Now Scenario Workshop” takes place in juxtaposition with other ECOSENS events of interest.  Find details in the invitation. Pre-register for the in-person workshop here

First ECOSENS Scientific Event end of August 2023

ECOSENS project will organise the first Scientific Event “Powering the Future Responsibly: Assessing the Sustainability of Nuclear Energy” on 29th of August 2023 in Tabloo, Dessel, Belgium, from 13.30-17.00, immediately prior to the RICOMET conference. The focus of the Scientific Event will be the ECOSENS sustainability assessment methodology integrating a societal perspective on Europe’s future energy system that includes advanced and innovative technologies including nuclear. The influence of the stakeholder input gathered at the ECOSENS workshops in March 2023 will be consolidated. Results from the morning 2050 Scenario workshop will be shared. The event will be hybrid, and will welcome not only RICOMET conference participants, but also a wider audience interested in social, economic and environmental issues of future energy. Draft agenda is available here.

ECOSENS organizes a stakeholder webinar “Decarbonizing Europe’s energy system 2: Clarifying non-linear assumptions about energy demand to 2050”

The energy sector is influenced by policies, consumer behaviors, goals and actions to enlarge electrification, power smoothing strategies and advances, and energy efficiency measures — but also by the development of disruptive technologies and by economic and energy crises. Additionally, the current classical growth-oriented paradigm of development may give way to one focused on a healthy, “sufficient” economy designed to prosper but not necessarily to grow.

ECOSENS deliverable Strategy and plan for communication, dissemination and exploitation of results

ECOSENS published the basic document for communication, dissemination and exploitation of results in the project. ECOSENS’s outreach activities aim at communicating and disseminating the project results during the project lifetime and increase the impact after the end of the project. The central points of communication and dissemination are ECOSENS website linked with social media, tailored information materials and two-way interaction tools and channels with different stakeholders.

The ECOSENS methodology was presented at IAEA event: Workshop on Reimagining Nuclear Energy

In order to explore new ways to portray nuclear energy as a modern, socially beneficial source of clean energy contributing to climate change mitigation and socioeconomic development, IAEA organised between 26 and 28 April 2023 the workshop on Reimagining Nuclear Energy. The event brought together government officials, nuclear facility operators, and other nuclear energy actors in charge with the implementation of national stakeholder engagement and communication strategies, young nuclear professionals and nuclear advocates.

First two ECOSENS workshops with stakeholders, 29 & 30 March 2023, Brussels

The ECOSENS project starts with two international workshops intended to discuss with societal stakeholders possible and desired energy futures in general and the sustainability assessment of renewable and nuclear energy options in particular.