Applications to build at least 31 nuclear reactors are before the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, with more filings expected soon. Many of the projects are in the Southeast, with the first expected to go on line as early as 2015. Nuclear advocates hope eventually to build additional reactors in California.
"I'm aware of 33 or 34 projects in the hopper. I think the prospects are reasonably good. There's demand," said Bill Halsey, a leading expert on nuclear energy at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, where scientists have worked on solutions for permanent disposal of high-level radioactive waste.
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