Welcome to this two-day Symposium of the World Nuclear Association.
Over the last 25 years, this annual event has gained a prominent role in the world nuclear community, and we proudly carry that tradition into the new millennium. This would have been the 26th Annual Symposium of the Uranium Institute. Instead, it is the Inaugural Symposium of the new WNA.
Four months ago, our membership decided to change our name and to begin pursuing an ambitious objective. Our aim is to become what our new name implies - a trade organization of truly global membership, energetically supporting all aspects of the nuclear industry worldwide.
It is not just timely - it is urgent - that we do this, because the world has entered an era when nuclear energy is truly an idea whose time has come. The future of nuclear power and the future of this planet’s environment are now very much intertwined.
The functions of this organisation - our twin goals - will remain as before:
But while these purposes remain constant, we are also striving to change - by performing these roles with ever-greater effectiveness and on a far wider scale. Earlier this year, we placed confidence in our new Director General to provide bold and creative leadership.
I believe that he and the WNA secretariat have already begun to build a strong foundation for success.
Personally, I am proud that our organisation has taken these confident steps forward. We intend to grow, get stronger, serve our members better, and advance with ever greater force the important message that nuclear power is the large-scale clean energy that mankind needs in the 21st century.
In that spirit, let me show you a photograph.
This is our world - modern in many areas, but still undeveloped in large areas that are filled with huge and growing populations.
In the decades ahead, there will be many, many more of those lights. New lights - and trillions of kilowatts of electrical power - will be required if the needs of billions of people now alive - and soon to be born - are to be met. That energy must be affordable and it must be clean.
Those of us in this room have a task that relates not just to the future of our industry but, even more importantly, to the well being of our planet. Our task is nothing less than to see that the largest possible percentage of these lights - and the lights yet to appear - are powered by nuclear electricity.
Ladies and gentlemen, we have put together what I believe is a strong agenda for this Symposium and a distinguished group of speakers. We thank you for coming, and we look forward to our two days together. I am now pleased to turn the programme over to our Director General.
© copyright The World Nuclear Association 2001