U.S. Nuclear Energy Leadership and Exports


After long struggles, America’s nuclear industry is becoming a focal point for U.S. efforts to increase clean energy supplies—domestically and internationally—and as one among many dimensions of escalating geopolitical competition, especially with Russia, which dominates the global markets for nuclear reactors and nuclear fuel. While recent administrations and Congresses have worked intensively, often on a bipartisan basis, to support new nuclear technologies, the United States is not a global leader in nuclear energy. Officials, companies, and others contend with a complex web of policies accumulated over time, for varied reasons, during the eight decades of the nuclear age.

On April 2, Energy Innovation Reform Project and the Center for the National Interest hosted a special joint discussion of U.S. Nuclear Energy Leadership and Exports.

During the event, Assistant Secretary of Energy Dr. Kathryn Huff shared the Biden administration’s efforts to promote U.S. nuclear energy exports and responded to questions. Following her remarks, Daniel Poneman, former Deputy Secretary of Energy and former Chief Executive Officer of Centrus Energy, moderated a panel discussion featuring:

—Paul Saunders, president of the Center for the National Interest, senior advisor at EIRP, and author of EIRP’s new report Restoring America’s Nuclear Energy Leadership and Exports. He was a State Department Senior Advisor in the Bush administration and was president of EIRP from 2019 to early 2024.

—Kenneth Luongo, president of Partnership for Global Security and the Center for a Secure Nuclear Future. He has served as director of the Energy Department’s Office of Arms Control and Nonproliferation and of its North Korea Task Force as well as on the staff of the House Armed Services Committee.

—Stephen Rademaker, Senior Of Counsel at Covington, and a former Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control and for International Security and Nonproliferation. He has extensive Capitol Hill experience as well, including as Senior Counsel and Policy Director for National Security Affairs to then-Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and as Deputy Staff Director and Chief Council of the House Committee on International Relations.