Nuclear Power Generation
The first commercial nuclear power stations started operation in the 1950s. Nuclear energy now provides about 10% of the world’s electricity from about 440 power reactors. Nuclear is the world’s second largest source of low-carbon power. Over 50 countries utilise nuclear energy in about 220 research reactors. In addition to research, these reactors are used for the production of medical and industrial isotopes, as well as for training. Maintaining reliable electricity supplies and ‘keeping the lights on’ is vital. Nuclear generation supplies around 10.5% of electricity worldwide and contributes to electricity generation in over 30 countries.
The Importance of Nuclear Power
Public support for nuclear energy is rising as more and more people realise that nuclear energy is part of the solution for a clean energy future, which is leading to more political support and interest in the industry from institutional investors. Yet the nuclear energy industry is somewhat of an enigma to many people. Very few people know much about the industry, let alone how many people are part of it or what it contributes to a clean energy future.
Gathering simple HR data on the number of people in the workforce would enable the industry’s storytellers to humanise the somewhat secretive industry, drawing more attention to the people working in it which would support this positive trajectory.
Global Workforce of the Sector
The nuclear sector is especially hurting owing to “an acute need for talent,” it says. It attributes this to two reasons. First, “certain roles are highly technical and specific to nuclear. These roles are tough to fill.” Second, the workforce is older than that in other energy sectors. Nearly a third of professionals are aged 55 or above, compared to just 20% in oil and gas. Given that talent is in short supply, salaries in the sector have continued to soar, the report notes.
However, engineers in the sector were in high demand. Around one-third of survey respondents said that mechanical and electrical engineering were the areas most impacted by talent shortages. The sector has also expanded apprenticeships and university graduate programs to address shortages. In China, for example, a chronic shortage of professionals has inspired the creation of a “nuclear university”—an institution dedicated solely to developing new nuclear talent. Also notable is that digitalization is heping alleviate the pain of a talent crunch. Ultimately, the nuclear sector will need to focus on creativity and resourcefulness to address its workforce challenges which may mean also hiring professionals without nuclear experience and for the nuclear professionals its important that they have a clear roadmap into the future.
ERC Pool of Nuclear Professionals
Our current databse contains some 1100+ nuclear professionals of various nationalities such as Emiratis, French, Jordan, US, India, Romania, Japan, Ukraine, South Africa and so on across such roles such as:
- Nuclear Reactors Section Head
- Nuclear Power Plant Equipment Operator
- Power Plant Process System Design Engineer
- Senior Nuclear Procurement Engineer
- Nuclear Power Plant Operation Engineer
- TASK LEADER RCP nuclear power plant
- Resident inspector
- Contractor surveillance