Why molten salt reactors are problematic

One of the beneficiaries of the run-up to a potential federal election has been the nuclear energy industry, specifically companies that are touting new nuclear reactor designs called small modular reactors. The largest two financial handouts have been to two companies, both developing a specific class of these reactors, called molten salt reactors (MSRs).

The technology of molten salt reactors has not really had many successes so far. This type of reactor brings a lot of problems that do not occur in current reactors. In this opinion piece, M.V. Ramana argues that governments, and in this case specifically the government of Canada, should rely on technologies that have already proven themselves. If a country wants to use nuclear energy to combat climate change, it should do so on the basis of technology that already works. Molten salt reactors will not be operational in the near future and will therefore not be able to contribute to the fight against the climate crisis.

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