Theme presentation by Gerard Kottmann

  • The President of AIFEN AND WNE, tells us more about WNE theme

  • Gerard Kottmann

     The nuclear industry in the global energy mix: why focus on this issue on WNE 2016?

    The theme fits in with the current thinking on global energy needs.

    There are two major categories of countries.

    On the one hand, regions such as Africa, China or India have substantial needs for energy expansion to ensure their development that infrastructures cannot fully cover.

    On the other hand, some countries will have to restructure their energy mix. Among them, Poland, Turkey or the Middle East, but also some major economies like the US. Indeed, measures taken by the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) will eventually result in closure of coal plants which must be substitute by low-carbon ways. With an existing fleet consisting of 70% coal plants, China is facing the same problem. Nuclear power must be part of the solutions for all these countries.

    WNE 2014 proved the pride of all the industry players to belong to the international community of civil nuclear energy. The 2016 edition will further strengthen this cohesion. We must go beyond the divisions due to competition: we all have the same goal, the recognition of the nuclear power contribution, especially fighting global warming.

    How will WNE programme address this subject?

    WNE is first and foremost an international exhibition resolutely business-oriented, not a conference.
    The central theme is like a “banner”. I invite all the exhibition players to bring together under this “banner”.
    Panel discussion pilots will certainly develop this theme through various issues (Maintenance and life extension, Challenges ahead for the new projects, Benchmarking new technologies in other industries…)
    The future is also in the projection of the nuclear industry, which places progress at the heart of the discussions. Our industry is moving forward and is ever more innovative. Innovation will also be rewarded during the show, as part of the Awards Ceremony, for the very first time on WNE 2016. 4 awards will be given in order to highlight Innovation, Nuclear Safety, Knoledge Transfer and Operational Excellence, attesting that an increased presence of nuclear power in the global energy mix is relevant.
    After closing of WNE 2016, visitors will also have the opportunity to extend their meetings with various players through sites and facilities visits that will be held on Friday, July 1st.

    How will WNE help to link the resources and the needs?

    From the very first edition of WNE, we noticed that some countries wish to explain their nuclear plan, regardless of their nuclear development stage, in order to initiate or expand partnerships. In 2014 , international organizations including the IAEA Vienna , Turkey, ENEC (UAE ), the UKTI (UK) and ITER presented their projects and their needs during a dedicated session. In 2016, we will multiply these Business Opportunities sessions aiming them to be a real forum for these countries.
    Furthermore, Business meetings that are designed to link together exhibitors or exhibitors with visitors, have been so successful in 2014 that we expect twice more appointments in 2016: 4,000 business meetings should be organized.

    Training is a driving factor both for the development and the sustainability of the industry. How will it be addressed?

    In terms of training, the challenge is manifold. New entrants need to train high qualified people, with the required rigor that these operations management implies. What are specialised training that exist and that are available to them?
    The countries that already are equipped with nuclear plants have to replace the experts who retire and take away their expertise. How to allow the experts to share their experience and expertise with the young recruits through the exercise of occasional supervision missions?
    WNE aims to be the global platform that will enable the discovery of existing training worldwide but also the sharing of experience between training centres.
    The education will also be rewarded and will value a company or a training centre that excelled or innovated in this area.

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