Nuclear exit, the US energy mix, and carbon dioxide emissions

By Henry D. Jacoby, Sergey Paltsev, March 1, 2013

If the United States were to adopt a policy to phase out nuclear generation, as has happened recently in other developed countries, what would the environmental and energy-mix implications be? Based on alternative scenarios of nuclear exit that consider the influence of potential policies to limit greenhouse gas emissions, a model of the US and global economy indicates that, under current policy, a US nuclear exit would increase carbon dioxide emissions, and likely raise electricity prices and reduce gross domestic product by relatively small amounts. Those economic impacts would be increased by additional measures to limit carbon dioxide emissions.

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