After the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, the public acceptance of nuclear power has dwindled to historical low. Governments were forced to cancel and postpone new projects or even shut down reactors in operation due to an increased anti-nuclear sentiment. This paper aims to provide an international perspective of how various factors can affect public opinion of nuclear power.
In this paper, we rebut the previous-held argument that nuclear education is conducive to the public support of nuclear power. It is found that the relationship between educational efforts and public support is captured by a downward-sloping line. The paper then assesses the effect on the public acceptance of demographics, socioeconomic status, political environment and risk orientation using correlation coefficients table. The largest public concern comes from the insecurity of nuclear power plants and radioactive materials. The health of an economy also plays a major role in determining people’s attitude toward building new nuclear power plants.
The paper also suggests some solutions for each category of countries based on the research analysis.