10 Jun 2024

Is It Time to Reconsider Nuclear Energy in Serbia?

In recent years, growing energy demands and environmental concerns have brought nuclear energy back into focus.  Its importance lies in producing large amounts of energy while emitting fewer greenhouse gases than fossil fuels.  As countries seek sustainable energy solutions, many are turning to nuclear power.  However, despite its benefits, nuclear energy faces legal barriers in several countries, including Australia, Austria, Denmark, and Serbia.

Why is nuclear energy banned in Serbia?

In 1989, SFR Yugoslavia passed the Nuclear Power Plants Construction Ban Act, which Serbia later inherited.  This act was a response to the Chernobyl disaster in Ukraine, then part of the USSR.  In 1986, a reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded, causing a massive fire and radiation leak with severe long-term consequences.   Many countries reacted by enacting measures to prevent similar disasters, with some opting to ban nuclear energy altogether.

Advances in technology over the past decades have significantly improved the safety of nuclear power plants and waste disposal.  As a result, some countries have reduced their opposition to nuclear power and are now considering developing nuclear power plants.

Benefits of nuclear energy

Nuclear energy offers numerous benefits and could help address the emerging energy crisis.  It is one of the cleanest energy sources, with minimal environmental risks thanks to modern technology.  Nuclear power plants can produce large amounts of energy consistently, regardless of external factors like climate conditions.

With the rise of AI and other technologies, electricity consumption is expected to increase significantly.  As the demand for clean energy grows, Serbia is reconsidering nuclear energy.  The first step towards this is to remove the legal ban on nuclear power.

The Nuclear Power Plants Construction Ban Removal Bill has been introduced in the legislative process.  While this is a step forward, much work remains before Serbia can establish nuclear power plants.

Other barriers for developing nuclear energy

Legal barriers are not the only challenge.  Public fear of nuclear power plants persists, and it will take time to overcome this. Educating the population on the benefits and safety of nuclear energy is crucial.  Another challenge is the lack of nuclear energy experts, a result of the long-standing ban.  Ensuring the safety of nuclear operations requires highly trained personnel. Finally, nuclear energy is expensive.  Building and maintaining nuclear power plants and reactors require significant resources.

However, the cost of energy shortages and environmental pollution is much higher.


Amid growing energy needs and environmental challenges, nuclear energy emerges as a promising option.  Legal barriers are just the first hurdle in developing nuclear power plants, but they are not the last.

Despite the challenges, the benefits of nuclear energy far outweigh the risks, making it likely that its development will increase worldwide.