Originally Posted by TheEngineer1
While traditional high output reactors have massive initial capital costs, costs which Ireland certainly couldn't afford without massive private investment/ EU funding, I don't see why we couldn't build smaller fast breeder reactors based off models used in submarines and aircraft carriers.
Of course Ireland could afford them, we've built out massively expensive power projects over the decades and continue to do so. There's no need for EU funding for stuff like this. We're one of the wealthiest regions in the EU. We were prepared to build at least one pressurised water or boiling water plant in the 1970s under FAR less economic buoyancy than today. It's a big piece of infrastructure but we could do it easily enough, if we wanted to.
Whether Ireland builds them or not would be a political and practical decision.
One of the major downsides of nuclear is the lifecycle cost. Most of the British plants for example were many, many times over budget and the fuel cycle (reprocessing) and decommissioning costs have been astronomical.
Also looking towards the UK in the past there were plants were construction went on for decades. Dungeness B : started 1965 - commercial operation only began in 1983 and Hartlepool 1968 to 1989!! Even the last AGR, Torness took over 8 years.
If you look at the EDF/Areva EPR plants being built at the moment in France and Finland, they're also massively late and over budget. Meanwhile the UK's proposed new plants have all fallen through or are in a mess before they've even begun.
Overall, I think we're stuck with renewables and gas for the foreseeable future.
We could also probably do a huge tidal project in Cork Harbour which could double as a flood protection measure for the city. Offshore wind also absolutely should be happening.