Ever since the Russia-Ukraine War started we have seen a series of events that have changed the Dynamics of the entire world economy first Russia invaded Ukraine then the WEst applied sanctions on Russia and in return, Russia started hiking the oil and gas prices and this caused a recession in Europe and just a few days ago we also saw an uprising of the Wagner Army in Russia and now there is a nuclear race happening in the background between three most powerful countries in the world which are Russian U.S and China. China and Russia have made no secret of their extensive nuclear cooperation joining together via video link in the May of 2021 to celebrate the construction of new nuclear power units that two nuclear plants in China both of which use Russia technology the United States once a leader in building out neclear power plants has today fallen behind countries like Russian and China the war in Ukraine has disrupted energy markets in Europe and regineds conversations around the need for countries to be energy independent the United States Imports the majority of its Uranium Canada Kazakhstan and Russina are among the nations biggest suppliers but in the wake of the war the Ukraine the Unites States is urging domestic producers to step up and while most people might think nuclear energy is no big deal at all take a lookat tis chart if you see this graph 69 of France electricity from nuclear energy 50 of Belfium’s power came rom nuclear energy and nearly 20 percent of the entire electricity generated by United States came from nuclear energy along and the United States is the world’s largest consumer of nuclear energy.
whereby one in every five Americans rely solely on nuclear energy for heating and power and you know where it gets crazy Russian uranium accounted for about 50 percent of the nuclear fuel consmed by U.S. until the last decade and as of last year while many products from Russian were sanctioned us very very cleverly did not apply sanction on Russian nuclear fuel instead the United States paid 1 billion dollars to Russian for nuclear fuel so pratically speaking while the us was criticizing other countries for buying oil and gas in Russia U.S directly funded the Russian war on Ukraine by buying nuclear Fuel and this according to their own logic and this clearly states how powerful Russia is in the nuclear market of the 21st century in fact both China and russia ar building a nuclear Empire for themselves which i sending cheaters down the spine of U.S and Europe so in this article let’s go deep and try to understand what is so great about nuclear energy that it is considered to be better than oil solar and gas.
How are Russian and China controlling the nuclear value of China of the world what is the U.S. doing to de-risk itself and where does India stand in this situation?
Why is nuclear energy such a big deal in geopolitics firstly it has an extremely high energy density compared to oil and gas so much so that a mone inch tall uranium petty is equivalent to one ton of cola 564 liters of oil and about 17 000 cubic feet of natural gas secondly nuclear energy is low carbon energy source so while fossil fuels released a large amount of carbon dioxide and another greenhouse gases nuclear power plants produces zero CO2 emissions during their operations? Any low carbon emission energy source is very very critical for a country because all global leaders are now being forced to achieve their zero carbon emission targets by 2050 or 2070. and thirdly nuclear enrgy uses 360 times less land as compared to wind farms and 75 times less as compared to solar photovoltic plants and the best part is nuclear power plants offer a consistent and continuous power supply compared to toher renewable energy sources because you do not have to depend on weather conditions lie wind speed or satellite for producing energy this is the reason why every major county is extremely bullish on nuclear energy now although its radioactive waste disposal is challenge if precatuions are taken dependable source of clean energy this is why like we saw in the chart the biggest economies in the world heavily depend on nuclear energy if this is very very clear to you let’s look at who supplies uranium to these countries and you will know why Russian and China are the bosses here to tell you about it nuclear fuel value chian consists of five broad stages and here is how Russia and China have very very cleverly established thier dominance the first step of nuclear fuel cycle is mining in this stage Whoever has the bigges uranium reserves is the king here if you see as of 2022 Kazakhstan produced 43 percent of the entire world supply Canada produced 15 percent and Namibia stood 11 so just three countries supplied 69 percent of the entire world’s uranium and Russia and Chian both produced only five percent and 3.4 respectively but the cathc over here is that Russian State Corporation Rose Tom has up to 50 stake in five subsidiary companies of Kazakhstan state company called Kazar Tom prom and this Kazar company is the biggest uranium Mining Company in the world similarly a Chinese state company also owns 49 stake in two Kazakh uranium mining subsidies and just like this even Washington Post reports that all active mine in Namibia are majorly owned by the Chinese State companies so clearly China and Russia are the Godfather of stage one whereby they control two of the richest sources of uranium in the world and this brings us to stage two of the nuclear fuel cycle which is conversion this is a table that enlists the major countries that have conversion plants here again Russian accounted for 38 of conversion service and China accounds for 25 of the capacity in this table so except for Canada and Farnce there is no other contender for the conversion services in the world and U.S is way stood at zero cap;acity utilization as of 2020.
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