Forty Years of Uranium Resources, Production and Demand in Perspective

The Red Book Retrospective

image of Forty Years of Uranium Resources, Production and Demand in Perspective
The biannual Uranium Resources, Production and Demand, also known as the "Red Book," was first published in 1965 and has since grown to be a recognised world reference on uranium. Over the 40 years of its existence, the Red Book has collected an impressive quantity of official data supplied by governments. This Red Book retrospective was undertaken to collect, collate, analyse and publish all of the key information collected in the 20 editions of the Red Book published between 1965 and 2004. Additionally, every effort has been made to fill in gaps in the record to provide the most complete and exhaustive information possible. As a result, the Red Book retrospective gives a full historical profile of the world uranium industry in the areas of exploration, resources, production, reactor-related requirements, inventories and price. It provides in-depth information relating to the histories of the major uranium-producing countries including Australia, Canada, France, Germany (including the former German Democratic Republic), the Russian Federation (including the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) and the United States. For the first time, for example, a comprehensive look at annual and cumulative production and demand of uranium since the inception of the atomic age is possible. Besides reporting and documenting the historical data, expert analyses provide fresh insights into important aspects of the industry including: the cost of discovery, resources to production ratios and the time to reach production after discovery, among others. Taken together, this Red Book retrospective provides the most complete record of the uranium industry publicly available, dating from the birth of civilian nuclear energy through to the dawn of the 21st century.

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Installed nuclear capacity

Nuclear Energy Agency

Civilian use of nuclear power was initiated in the United Kingdom in 1957 with the opening of the Calder Hall 1 nuclear reactor, with generating capacity during the first year of 50 megawatts electric (MWe). From that modest beginning the industry grew to 435 operating reactors with a generating capacity of over 359 400MWe in 2003, when nuclear power accounted for 16% of the world’s electricity output (Figure 2.1). In addition, in 2003 there were 33 reactors under construction in 11 countries. Generating capacity grew at an average annual rate of about 20% between 1956 and 2003. Though masked by the scale in Figure 2.1, generating capacity expanded at an annual rate of about 55% between 1957 and 1973. By comparison the rate of growth between 1973 and 1990, the peak building years, was about 13% annually. Between 1990 and 2003, the average annual rate of growth in generating capacity was less than 1% per year. The leading countries in terms of nuclear generating capacity in 2003 are listed in Table 2.1.

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