Reconciling nuclear risk: the impact of the Fukushima accident on comparative preferences for nuclear power in U.K. electricity generation

Christopher R. Jones, Herman Elgueta, J. Richard Eiser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Polls conducted in the United Kingdom following the Fukushima nuclear accident (March 2011) indicated a fairly muted and temporary shift in public approval of nuclear power. This study investigated how: (a) comparative preferences for nuclear power in the U nited Kingdom might have been affected by the accident; and (b) how “supporters” of nuclear power reconciled their pro-nuclear attitude in the wake of the disaster. Between-subjects comparisons with a pre-Fukushima sample revealed our post-Fukushima sample to have comparable preferences for nuclear power. Further analysis suggested that “supporters” retained their pro-nuclear stance in response to Fukushima by emphasizing the necessity of nuclear power in the U.K. context. The theoretical, practical and methodological implications for these findings are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242-256
JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume46
Issue number4
Early online date1 Nov 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016

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