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Energy 2050 (Policy Brief 263 - February 2012)

Energy 2050 (Policy Brief 263 - February 2012)


This analysis of energy scenarios up until 2050, made at the request of the Ministry of Industry, Energy and the Digital Economy, answers questions about the future of a French energy mix and the desirable place for nuclear energy under the climate constraints that will become more important with time.

The analysis first emphasizes the critical role that energy efficiency actions must play.

The analysis then discusses nuclear energy, a core issue in the national political debate right now, and shows that this type of energy is best off if existing plants are extended as long as the “Nuclear Safety Authority”(ASN) permits it and if a small number of third-generation nuclear reactors (EPR) are constructed to smooth out production when older plants need to be closed. The analysis also points out that the development of generation 4 sites should continue alongside the development of renewable energy, while leaving the question of nuclear energy in 2050 and even 2030 open-ended. This will depend on several factors: successful policies to manage energy demand, lower renewable energy costs, technology breakthroughs, feedback on the French and foreign EPR functioning, and natural gas prices.


  • The main lessons
  • The four options
  • A comparison of the four options
  • Conclusions
  • Authors: Jacques Pecebois and Claude Mandil
    With the help of Dominique Auverlot (CAS), Etienne Beeker (CAS), Johanne Buba (CAS), Stephanie Combes (DGT), Raphael Contamin (DGT), Jean- Guy Devezeaux de Lavergne (CEA), Timothée Furois (DGEC), Richard Lavergne (DGEC), Guy Maisonnier (IFPEN), Francois Perfezou (DGEC)

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