Nov 14, 2013

Nuclear industry heats Carolinas' economy

3 min
The Carolinas' nuclear energy industry provides a significant economic impact to North and South Carolina, according to a recent stud...

The Carolinas' nuclear energy industry provides a significant economic impact to North and South Carolina, according to a recent study. An industry coalition, the Carolinas' Nuclear Cluster, commissioned the research to obtain a clear measure of the economic effects of the nuclear industry.  The total economic impact tops $20 billion.

In the Carolinas, the nuclear industry directly provides 29,000 jobs. The industry has more than $2.2 billion in direct payroll, and more than $950 million paid in state and local taxes.

Total direct impacts are from employment associated with the generation of power at seven nuclear stations in North and South Carolina, corporate nuclear functions, new construction and employment at the Savannah River and Barnwell sites in South Carolina. Researchers used purchases and payroll data from these businesses in their evaluation. 

“Residents and businesses in the Carolinas receive real economic benefits from the nuclear industry through jobs, income creation and the multiplier of spending,” says Dr. Scott Mason, lead researcher at Clemson University. “This study not only looked at the impact of the operating nuclear plants but also producers of nuclear fuel, engineering and procurement companies, suppliers and subcontractors, and others.”

The cascading effect of dollars created by the nuclear industry and used in communities is estimated to add another $2 billion in indirect payroll, so that some 100,000 jobs are touched by the nuclear industry for a total of $4.2 billion in payroll.

Growth in this industry can be enhanced with businesses that provide on-going maintenance and instrumentation upgrades in the facilities here and across the nation. 

The Carolinas' Nuclear Cluster has encouraged additional suppliers to locate and grow their businesses in the Carolinas,” says Jim Little, a 40-year veteran of the nuclear energy industry who is the chair of the Carolinas' Nuclear Cluster. “These suppliers can provide materials to the nuclear industry domestically and multi-nationally as well as to other industries. Examples of businesses in the nuclear supply chain are industrial supply firms, valve manufacturers, motor and pump makers, design firms, maintenance companies and services such as security and laboratories.”

The ability of companies to sell materials across the supply chain of nuclear and other energy generation sources helps companies maintain a portfolio of sales opportunities and can strengthen a supplier's business position. “The Carolinas' Nuclear Cluster is working to build a strong industry network because we understand this country must have a balanced generation portfolio,” Little says.

“The economic contributions of nuclear energy in the Carolinas have proven to be sustainable – providing low-cost, safe and reliable electricity across the region for more than four decades,” said Dhiaa Jamil, Duke Energy's president of nuclear.

Researchers at Clemson University's Center of Economic Excellence in Supply Chain Optimization and Logistics conducted the study. They used surveys, analysis of public documents, interviews with nuclear subject matter experts, a detailed engineering-based scaling methodology, and IMPLAN (benchmark economic software that estimates indirect and induced economic impacts on a region).

The analysis was conducted by partitioning nuclear industry entities into seven categories: original equipment manufacturers and producers of nuclear fuel; engineering procurement and construction companies; operating nuclear plants; the entire nuclear complex in Aiken, S.C.; new nuclear plant construction; organizations supported by state and/or federal governments; post-secondary educational institutions; and suppliers and subcontractors that support these entities.

Created as an economic development concept by Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter, an industry cluster is a geographically proximate group of companies and associated institutions in a particular field, linked by commonalities and complementaries. Porter says successful clusters have linked organizations that range from manufacturing to suppliers, service providers and educators.

The Carolinas’ Nuclear Cluster brings together the nuclear industry, higher education and nonprofits to address important policy and business opportunities in North and South Carolina. The Carolinas' Nuclear Cluster is under the umbrella of E4Carolinas, a not-for-profit corporation that convenes industry, research and educational institutions, innovators, economic development organizations, and public leaders to coordinate the energy cluster in the Carolinas.

Source: Carolinas’ Nuclear Cluster

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May 13, 2021

All but two UK regions failing on school energy efficiency

Dominic Ellis
2 min
Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only UK regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil

Most schools are still "treading water" on implementing energy efficient technology, according to new analysis of Government data from eLight.

Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil, cutting expenditure by 4.4% and 0.9% respectively. Every other region of England increased its average energy expenditure per pupil, with schools in Inner London doing so by as much as 23.5%.

According to The Carbon Trust, energy bills in UK schools amount to £543 million per year, with 50% of a school’s total electricity cost being lighting. If every school in the UK implemented any type of energy efficient technology, over £100 million could be saved each year.

Harvey Sinclair, CEO of eEnergy, eLight’s parent company, said the figures demonstrate an uncomfortable truth for the education sector – namely that most schools are still treading water on the implementation of energy efficient technology. Energy efficiency could make a huge difference to meeting net zero ambitions, but most schools are still lagging behind.

“The solutions exist, but they are not being deployed fast enough," he said. "For example, we’ve made great progress in upgrading schools to energy-efficient LED lighting, but with 80% of schools yet to make the switch, there’s an enormous opportunity to make a collective reduction in carbon footprint and save a lot of money on energy bills. Our model means the entire project is financed, doesn’t require any upfront expenditure, and repayments are more than covered by the energy savings made."

He said while it has worked with over 300 schools, most are still far too slow to commit. "We are urging them to act with greater urgency because climate change won’t wait, and the need for action gets more pressing every year. The education sector has an important part to play in that and pupils around the country expect their schools to do so – there is still a huge job to be done."

North Yorkshire County Council is benefiting from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which has so far awarded nearly £1bn for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects around the country, and Craven schools has reportedly made a successful £2m bid (click here).

The Department for Education has issued 13 tips for reducing energy and water use in schools.

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