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When new legislation makes its way to the president’s desk, investors often sit up and take notice. And that’s exactly what’s happening today with respect to nuclear power stocks Cameco (NYSE: CCJ), NuScale Power (NYSE: SMR), and Energy Fuels (NYSEMKT: UUUU). These stocks are all flying higher after the market learned that President Biden signed a bill yesterday that encourages growth in nuclear power.

As of 12:01 p.m. ET, shares of Cameco are up 9.2%, while NuScale Power and Energy Fuels are up 6.1% and 7.4%, respectively.

The basics of the bipartisan-backed nuclear power bill

Addressing numerous issues regarding nuclear energy in the United States, the Accelerating Deployment of Versatile, Advanced Nuclear for Clean Energy (ADVANCE) Act aims to make the development of innovative nuclear energy assets more financially attractive in a variety of ways. For example, the ADVANCE Act will lower the regulatory costs for businesses interested in licensing advanced nuclear reactor technologies and provide a financial incentive for companies that deploy next-generation nuclear reactor technologies.

The ADVANCE Act received strong bipartisan support in Congress, passing the Senate by an 88-2 vote and the House of Representatives with a 393-13 vote. Addressing the merits of the legislation, Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ), a Ranking Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, stated, “By ensuring we can deploy safer and more reliable nuclear power, the ADVANCE Act will help combat our dependence on dirty fossil fuels, strengthening our energy independence and securing our economic security.”

Investors are particularly attuned to Cameco and Energy Fuels today as they’re two of the largest uranium producers. If the number of nuclear power plants expands, uranium will be in greater demand — an advantageous position for both Cameco and Energy Fuels. Operating three assets, Cameco has an annual uranium concentrates production capacity of over 30 million pounds.

Energy Fuels, moreover, is more of a growth opportunity. A major U.S. producer of uranium, Energy Fuels forecasts 150,000 pounds to 500,000 pounds of finished uranium production in 2024, and it has uranium resources at several assets equivalent to about 70 million pounds.

On the other hand, NuScale Power is committed to developing innovative nuclear power plants with better safety profiles than traditional ones. Lauding itself as the only company to develop a small modular reactor (SMR) approved by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), NuScale Power recognizes a sizable market opportunity for its SMRs as the growth in artificial intelligence (AI) is placing tremendous power demands on data centers.

Is it too late to power your portfolio with these nuclear names?

With President Biden signing the ADVANCE Act into law, it’s no wonder uranium producers Cameco and Energy Fuels are driving higher today. Likewise, NuScale Power is also keenly positioned to benefit from the legislation as it attempts to deploy its innovative SMRs. Despite the legislation, though, investors should avoid knee-jerk reactions, expecting to see an immediate proliferation of nuclear power plants. The development of projects such as these takes years.

For those with longer investing horizons — and who are comfortable with taking on a higher degree of risk — Energy Fuels and NuScale Power are certainly two nuclear energy names worth digging further into. Cameco is certainly a worthwhile consideration for more conservative investors interested in gaining nuclear power exposure, especially in light of the recent legislation.

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Scott Levine has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Cameco and NuScale Power. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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