Keywords: nuclear renaissance, Africa, energy shortages, uranium, nuclear safety, nuclear security, International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, proliferation, nuclear power generation, nuclear energy
Africa and its nuclear renaissance
Against the background of power shortages, higher prices for oil and gas and the creeping effects of climate change, the nuclear power renaissance has become a global catch phrase. Several African nations are seriously considering the nuclear power option and making exploratory steps toward this objective. The rising expectations for nuclear power are also driven by abundant uranium resources in Africa. A weak industrial infrastructure, the lack of skilled labour, interstate conflicts, social and ethnic strife, insurgencies, corruption and crime does not create, however, an environment in some African countries that is conducive to the safe and secure implementation of nuclear power generation policies. The long and daunting road toward this objective would require African governments to go beyond the traditional framework of a technical programme and apply considerable efforts toward ameliorating the problems that plague their states and private sectors.