The global nuclear decommissioning services market size was valued at USD 6.05 billion in 2021 and is projected to register a CAGR of 5.1% during the forecast period. The worldwide shutdown of older nuclear reactors owing to aging and the transitioning trend toward renewable sources of energy due to minimal environmental impact is likely to be the major forces driving the growth of the market in the coming years. Due to the Covid-19, the nuclear sector faced a few challenges such as unavailability of the workers, restrictions on the number of on-site workers, and disruption in supply chains. Travel restrictions and government guidelines had an adverse impact on the progress of some nuclear decommissioning projects, owing to the limited availability of staff and experts. The end dates of project completion faced the risk of extension.
The demand for nuclear decommissioning has observed a tremendous surge due to the growing support from the governments of various countries post-nuclear accidents. Pressure from the public as well as governments are building up due to which nuclear phase-out has become the need of the hour. Increasing safety concerns, especially in regions such as Europe and North America, are anticipated to positively impact market growth.
Nuclear dismantling can take several years as radioactive waste degrades over a long period of time. In general, the lifespan of a reactor is expected to be around 40 to 60 years, beyond which, it becomes difficult to operate them. Therefore, at the end of their lifespan, power plants need to be decommissioned or demolished so that the site can be made available for other uses.
The process of decommissioning includes the entire clean-up of radioactivity when the plant wears out or the operating license expires. Different methods of decommissioning the nuclear facilities are available with industry operators. These include immediate dismantling, deferred dismantling, and entombment. The majority of the materials can be reused and as the collective dose is relatively low, deferred dismantling is preferred. Some of the major players in the industry are constantly striving for the technological advancements to deliver better services with increased efficiency.
Decommissioning the nuclear facilities involve extensive research and development to build up efficient dismantling techniques. Such technological advancements to deliver effective decommissioning of the plants escalate cost and make the entire process expensive. Therefore, the high cost of dismantling reactors is expected to threaten market growth. Furthermore, service providers are required to conform to the numerous standards and regulations established by authorities in different regions, posing a challenge.
Nuclear reactors can be categorized into two key types: water-cooled reactors and gas-cooled reactors. Water-cooled reactors include pressurized water reactors (PWR), pressurized heavy water reactors, and boiling water reactors. Pressurized water reactors held the maximum share in the global nuclear decommissioning services market in 2021.
PWRs are highly preferred by industry operators due to the factors such as a high level of stability and ease of operation. This segment is also projected to exhibit the strongest growth rate during the forecast period due to its widespread use and installation.
Decommissioning of nuclear facilities can be done in various ways, including immediate dismantling, deferred dismantling or safe enclosure, and entombment. These methods have their own merits and demerits. However, with the rise in the global shutdown of nuclear reactors, especially in Europe, the immediate dismantling of reactors soon after the shutdown has dominated the market.
However, with the growing energy crisis across the globe, the key nations have realized the importance of nuclear power in their energy portfolio and are, therefore, extending the lifespan of the reactors. Deferred dismantling is thus expected to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period due to reduced levels of radiation as compared to other methods.
The entombment strategy calls for the nuclear plant to be entombed forever. This is a much faster and more economical strategy in comparison to the other two. However, most industry operators have not yet accepted this strategy due to the environmental as well as other public concerns.
Europe accounted for the largest share of 47.0% in the nuclear decommissioning services market in 2021. It is also likely to be the second-fastest-growing region after North America, with a CAGR of 5.3% during the forecast period. It was valued at USD 2.84 billion in 2021 and is anticipated to be valued at USD 4.49 billion by 2030.
The market in North America was valued at USD 1.78 billion in 2021 and the region is anticipated to register the fastest growth of 5.5% during the forecast period. The U.S., which is a major market in the region, is likely to witness the shutdown of several reactors by 2025. The rise of nuclear decommissioning services in Japan and other Asian countries is likely to spur the market in Asia-Pacific during the forecast period.
In June 2019, AECOM signed an alliance agreement with Japan-based Toshiba Corporation, a multinational conglomerate, to work on nuclear reactor decommissioning in Japan. It aims to offer decommissioning services for nuclear reactors and facilities of Japanese government organizations and commercial power utilities with this partnership.
Providers of nuclear decommissioning services continue to focus on innovation and technological advancements in dismantling techniques to deliver enhanced performance. Such developments, coupled with competitive pricing, are likely to assist them in increasing their market share during the forecast period. Companies are investing profoundly in research and development to overcome barriers faced while decommissioning nuclear facilities.
In April 2022, Westinghouse Electric Company LLC announced the signing of an agreement for the acquisition of U.S.-based BHI Energy, a company providing services in power generation and delivery. Westinghouse Electric Company LLC aims to expand its expertise and capabilities in nuclear plant modification and maintenance, and other such services with this acquisition. Some of the prominent players in the global nuclear decommissioning services market include:
Babcock International Group PLC
Westinghouse Electric Company LLC
Market size value in 2022
USD 6.32 billion
Revenue forecast in 2030
USD 9.42 billion
CAGR of 5.1% from 2022 to 2030
Base year for estimation
2019 - 2020
2022 - 2030
Revenue in USD million, CAGR from 2022 to 2030
Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, trends
Reactor type, strategy, region
North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; South & Central America; Middle East & Africa
U.S.; U.K.; Germany; France; Japan; South Korea
Key companies profiled
Orano Group; Babcock International Group PLC; Westinghouse Electric Company LLC; AECOM; Studsvik AB; Bechtel Corporation; GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy; Ansaldo Energia; Jacobs (CH2M Hill Company Ltd.); Magnox Ltd.
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This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends and opportunities in each of the sub-segments from 2019 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global Nuclear Decommissioning Services Market report based on the reactor type, strategy, and region:
Reactor Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2019 - 2030)
Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR)
Boiling Water Reactor (BWR)
Pressurized Heavy Water Reactor (PHWR)
Gas Cooled Reactor (GCR)
Strategy Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2019 - 2030)
Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2019 - 2030)
South & Central America
The Middle East and Africa
b. The global nuclear decommissioning services market size was estimated at USD 6.05 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 6.32 billion in 2022.
b. The global nuclear decommissioning services market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 5.1% from 2022 to 2030 to reach USD 9.42 billion by 2030.
b. Europe dominated the nuclear decommissioning services market with a share of 47% in 2021. This is attributable the shutdown of several reactors over the forecast period.
b. Some key players operating in the nuclear decommissioning services market include Orano Group; Babcock International Group PLC; Westinghouse Electric Company LLC; AECOM; Studsvik AB; Bechtel Corporation; and Magnox Ltd.
b. Key factors that are driving the nuclear decommissioning services market growth include the worldwide shutdown of older nuclear reactors due to aging.
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