Making Nuclear Energy Cool

Kärnfull Energi is a new, hip and very climate-focused Swedish utility that recently launched offering Swedes a 100% nuclear energy option. They are neither building nor generating new nuclear power, rather their service works much the way that U.S. based community choice aggregators (CCAs) in the U.S. work in offering ratepayers a 90% renewables option. Kärnfull buys certificates that guarantee the nuclear origin of electricty being supplied to its customers.

Kärnfull brand and product offering appeals strongly to young, science-savvy, and predominantly urban Swedes, who are the people most concerned about climate change and least afflicted with fears of or aversion to nuclear, which is characteristic of older generations. The world has woken up to the problems of climate change and habitat destruction. The scientific community tells us we need nuclear power. The public senses that renewables alone won’t save us.

Christian Sjolander and John Ahlberg, the founders aren’t nuclear engineers, but they are proud that Sweden has long supported nuclear power. They watched as neighbouring Germany failed miserably with Energiewende, locking in fossil gas and coal for the foreseeable future. “We didn’t want to let that happen here in Sweden.”

They knew that, in Sweden at least, there was significant public support for nuclear power (with 71% of people positive about it). Though exisiting utilities implictly sold nuclear electricity, all the hype was around 100% renewables products. No one was offering a 100% nuclear electricity tariff, so there was a gap in the market.  Now they are the fastest-growing utility in Sweden.

Read more in “Viral Growth of Swedish Startup Is Making Nuclear Energy Cool.”