Since the year 1974, there has been no new ground breaking for setting up new nuclear power plants although a number of nuclear reactor units have been constructed at these plants. However, there has recently been a revival of interest in nuclear energy and this new interest has largely been fostered by the Nuclear Power 2010 Program, which was established in the year 2000.
There has been an increase in the number of nuclear reactors being constructed since 2010 in existing power plants, such as the one at Watts Bar, Tennessee. In spite of the resurgence of interest in nuclear energy, most of the projects, which have been set up for the construction of nuclear reactors have been recently cancelled. This is mainly due to the economic challenges that are currently gripping the nation as well as the negative reaction that came in the wake of the recent nuclear accidents in Japan. Officials in the nuclear industry state that they only expect about five new nuclear reactors to be working in the next eight years because of the hindrances, which have made most of their projects to stall.
Since the beginning of its usage, there has been a lot of debate about the use of nuclear power in the United States and this has recently intensified due to talk of a coming renaissance in the use of nuclear energy (Terzo 1). Some of the most hotly debated issues concerning the use of nuclear energy have been matters concerning the public safety.