Nuclear power needed to realise net-zero carbon aspirations by 2050 – Nuklear Malaysia

BANGI, Jan 16: The Malaysian Nuclear Agency (Nuklear Malaysia) does not rule out the possibility that nuclear power may be necessary for the energy generation process to realise the aspiration of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Its director-general, Dr Rosli Darmawan said that although the use of nuclear energy is not specifically mentioned in the National Nuclear Technology Policy (DTNN) 2030, however, his team is always ready to explore energy generation using nuclear energy.

“Although the National Energy Transition Roadmap (NETR) did not mention this matter, there are several statements from the NRECC  (Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change Ministry) and Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli previously who have mentioned that it is under consideration by the year 2050,” he said.

“For now, we have no choice because if we want to achieve net-zero (emissions) using renewable energy (RE) technology alone, it will not succeed because this is a scenario at the global level. Many parties have already admitted that whether we like it or not we have to use nuclear energy,” he said.

Rafizi said this at a press conference after a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signing ceremony between Nuklear Malaysia and Alam Flora Environmental Solutions Sdn Bhd (AFES) at Dewan Tun Dr Ismail, Kompleks Agensi Nuklear Malaysia near here today  

Dr Rosli said most industries have begun to seriously consider the use of nuclear energy as fossil fuels such as coal are the biggest contributors to carbon emissions today.

“However, whether it will be implemented or not will depend on the consideration of the Energy Transition and Public Utilities Ministry. We will see the policy for this ministry in the next two to three years,” he said.

Regarding the MOU signed with AFES today, he said it aims to utilise nuclear technology in dealing with environmental pollution and will benefit the people by mainstreaming nuclear technology in a peaceful way in Malaysia.

He also said the scope of the collaboration will include research on the irradiation-pyrolysis of plastic waste; the development and adaptation of nuclear and related technologies and compatible with the plastic recycling industry; as well as the development of a pilot-scale plant for the irradiation-pyrolysis technology.

“It is also hoped that the high-value fuel produced will contribute to one of the new resources for the country and indirectly increase the national economy,” he added.

The signing ceremony for the collaboration saw the exchange of MoUs between Dr Rosli, representing Nuklear Malaysia, and Alam Flora Sdn Bhd chief executive officer and AFES director Datuk Mohd Zain Hasan.

Meanwhile, Mohd Zain said the collaboration is also seen to take advantage of advanced nuclear technology in the implementation of technology for converting used plastic waste into fuel such as diesel as well as innovative recycling of used plastic.