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Pepperdine University to Host Clean Energy and Nuclear Power Conference Featuring Panel of Experts

Clean Energy and Nuclear Power Conference

Pepperdine University will host the Clean Energy and Nuclear Power Conference on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, at the Wilburn Auditorium on Pepperdine’s Drescher Graduate Campus. The event will explore how recent innovations in nuclear science could contribute to reducing carbon dioxide emissions while safely generating electrical output.

“In the presence of daily headlines about investments, research, and government policy pertaining to nuclear power, the conference seeks to bring an important and timely topic to our community,” says Joseph Fritsch, Seaver College’s divisional dean of the Natural Science Division and professor of chemistry. “The distinguished speakers at the conference will address a wide range of topics relevant to the field from new technologies, nuclear waste, industry approaches, and a Christian perspective. 

Pepperdine will bring together research and energy experts from across the country to present their findings on clean and nuclear power. The speaker lineup includes Rita Baranwal, leader of the small nuclear reactor at Westinghouse Electric Company; Lisa Marshall, a professor of nuclear engineering at North Carolina State University and president-elect of the American Nuclear Society; Ted Nordhaus, founder and executive director of the Breakthrough Institute and a coauthor of An Ecomodernist Manifesto; Andrew Spencer, a Navy veteran, reactor operator, and Christian ethicist; Rusty Towell, director of Abilene Christian University's Nuclear Energy eXperimental testing lab; and Haruko Wainwright, the Mitsui Career Development Professor in Contemporary Technology and assistant professor in the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering at MIT.

This dynamic group of specialists will provide multiple perspectives on the viability of atomic energy and the many implications of its use. Presentation topics at the conference will include an exploration of developing energy technologies, the implementation of small modular reactors, education and engagement on the STEM pathway, nuclear waste management strategies, a Christian perspective on nuclear power, and governmental policy. The event will conclude with a moderated panel discussion, which will bring the varying viewpoints together in one conversation.

The Clean Energy and Nuclear Power Conference will begin at 1 PM with the final discussion taking place at 4:45 PM. The event is cohosted by Pepperdine’s Seaver College and School of Public Policy. It is sponsored by Seaver College, the Pepperdine Center for Sustainability, and the Office of the Provost.