The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency Yukiya Amano opened the agency's annual conference in Vienna Tuesday, stating that nuclear power was needed to help developing countries that required a stable energy source for growth while avoiding undue contributions to global warming.
In his opening address, Amano said that partnerships were the key strategy for developing economies. "Science and technology are critical to development. Transferring nuclear technology to developing countries is core IAEA business. Partnerships are an essential element of our work," Amano said.
The conference in Vienna runs from 30 May to 1 June. About 1,200 participants are in attendance.
Amano stressed the role nuclear power could play in helping emerging economies grow. "The technical cooperation program has improved the health and prosperity of millions of people. I have seen for myself in visits to developing countries all over the world that technical cooperation projects deliver huge benefits to individuals, families and entire communities," he said.
According to the UN News service, the IAEA in 2016 involved support for 146 countries, 37 of which would be viewed as emerging economies. "Together with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, the IAEA deploys nuclear techniques to help increase food production, manage pollution, reverse land degradation and restore soils. We work with the World Health Organization to help improve the availability of radiotherapy and nuclear medicine," Amano noted.
He called energy "indispensable for development," noting that "huge increases in energy supply will be required in the coming decades to support economic development and lift some 2.6 billion people out of energy poverty.”
“Nuclear power is one of the lowest-carbon technologies available to generate electricity. Nuclear power plants produce virtually no greenhouse gas emissions or air pollutants during their operation, and only very low emissions over their entire life cycle," he said. He added that the stability of nuclear energy contributed to economic growth by providing a stable source of power that contributed to stability in energy pricing.
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