The UK government has published a response to a consultation that began in October 2021 on the proposals on fusion regulation, stating that:
- Current UK regulators, such as EA and HSE, will be responsible for fusion R&D facilities.
- The regulatory institutions will be responsible for all planned fusion prototype energy facilities.
- Fusion energy facilities will be separated from nuclear regulatory and licensing requirements.
Furthermore, the government plans to create a regulatory framework to monitor fusion energy production in a plan called the Fusion Strategy, which would govern the use of fusion energy for commercial and industrial use over the next two decades. The growing regulatory framework would be based on the same framework governing solar energy.
Why did the government make its ruling?
UK Energy Incubator Hub is a fairly large firm that once operated under two brands –
The new ruling, which comes after just a year of rigorous consultation, would accelerate the production of fusion energy.
The UK government drew its conclusion after several months of studying input from both local and international experts on the energy source with careful consideration of the pros and cons. The government assessed the hazard of fusion energy facilities against the amount of energy produced by nuclear fission power plants.
Eventually, the government ruled in favour of the development of fusion energy due to its potential for producing vast quantities of low-carbon energy.
There were also economic benefits to expanding fusion energy. The government believes that a larger industry would create more jobs and improve employment. Furthermore, fusion technology would serve as a great form of export income for the UK, once it is refined and improved upon.
What does this mean for energy production?
The UK government’s ruling makes it clear that they are committed to a long-term overhaul of their energy industry to achieve net-zero. Despite its many advantages, fusion energy was previously believed to be difficult to scale and not practical for daily use.
However, the new rulings make it clear that the government would like to see some progress and development in this area to make energy more affordable to produce. With this new ruling, we can expect fusion energy to go from a theoretical energy source to an integral part of the industry in the coming years.