Nuclear energy is commonly used to make weapons and supplement deadly attacks. However, International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA) urged African governments and scientists to simplify nuclear science in order to help countries enjoy its benefits.
African has not fully ventured in Nuclear Tech and few people have practical know-how in the field. IAEA Director-General Yukiya Amano explained, lack of social acceptance and poor understanding of nuclear science and its peaceful applications are to blame for the slow adoption of nuclear technology in Africa.
Nuclear science can be used in different fields besides energy. The science can help Africans in Agriculture and health which will in turn improve our lives. Amano told a session devoted to Africa during the IAEA 59th general conference and scientific forum in Vienna, Austria last month.
“Lack of social acceptance and understanding remains one of the most difficult things in getting Africa to take up nuclear technology, yet it is not as complicated as people see it,” Amano said.
IAEA is ready to partner with African countries that are willing to obtain safe and secure nuclear energy. The energy will help African governments meet development needs. Nuclear technology has the ability to solve economic challenges facing Africa today.
“Access to nuclear technology should not be limited to rich countries only and the IAEA is here as a reliable partner to help with expertise in all aspects of nuclear technology”, Amano said.
Some African countries like Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, Sudan, Tunisia and Uganda have expressed their interest in generating nuclear power. In addition, South Africa is in the process of expanding its installed capacity. However, the countries must be allowed to make a sovereign decision on whether to take up nuclear technology.
“These countries have the African Network for Enhancing Nuclear Power Programme Development.” Amano added.
Scidev.net reports, Ochilo Ayacko, the executive chairman of the Kenya Nuclear Electricity Board and chair of the African Union’s commission on nuclear energy, told African countries to take up the benefits of nuclear technology including power generation.
“Africa has missed out on many technologies in the past and should make use of IAEA’s repository of expertise to help solve some of its problems such as inadequate energy,” Ayacko said.
“With IAEA offering free expertise, what Africans need to do is to ensure adequate public participation in deciding whether to go for nuclear power, then work out modalities of financing development of infrastructure,” Ayacko said.