Heavy subsidies in heavy water: Economics of nuclear power in India

Little is publicly known about the efficiency and economics of heavy water production at the Department of Atomic Energy’s facilities. We estimate the cost of producing heavy water at the Manuguru plant by analysing the available budget figures and assuming reasonable values for other factors that affect the cost and whose values are not publicly available. Our results suggest that the production costs significantly exceed the price charged under even extremely favourable and unrealistic assumptions. Nuclear power, therefore, is being subsidised through the provision of cheap heavy water.

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