As nuclear rises again, its second act is in doubt – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – February 15, 2022)

The uranium industry is in the early stages of a second act as some countries turn to nuclear power to help reduce their carbon footprints, but skepticism abounds about how long its moment in the sun will last.

Cameco Corp. last week announced plans to ramp up uranium production at its massive McArthur River mine in northern Saskatchewan. The company mothballed the mine in 2018 amid a prolonged uranium slump precipitated by the meltdown of the Fukushima power plant in Japan.

In the aftermath of the 2011 accident, the price of uranium went into free fall and some countries, including Germany, vowed to phase out nuclear power entirely. But over the past few years, nuclear has been touted by politicians as a possible silver bullet to help countries meet ever-stricter emissions standards.

The European Union recently designated nuclear as a “green” fuel, as it generates no carbon dioxide. That means investment managers are likely to increasingly seek out uranium companies for inclusion in environmental, social and governance (ESG) funds.

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