There are huge improvement gains to be garnered with more efficient use of the electricity we generate today, greatly reducing the need for more power plants of any kind. But energy conservation and efficiency isn't "business sexy" or "politically sexy", look what happened to Carter when he tried to emphasize just being more efficient with what we have, with either electricity or transportation fuels. And he is a big nuke guy himself, he just groks being more efficient as both a longer range cost savings and also from a national security viewpoint. He had a lot of faults, but as to energy he is still the top prez we ever had.
Conservation is a boring sell for the big players (outside of some niche markets now like Data Centers are taking it seriously), wall street investors don't like it that much, there are no huge short term profits to get there because of the nature of improving systems that use electricity, it is too widely diversified there, they can't monopolize it as much. In a lot of cases, there are zero new studies, patents, or anything like that required to accomplish big gains in efficiency, no "investment" potential to rake in the short term profits.
Politicians don't like it that much, no big buzzwords and it's been seriously demonized as an idea over the years, they are afraid of coming across like quality of life deniers, that you have to sacrifice comfort for efficiency. Now that isn't true, but that is what happens with these arguments "Oh noes, I don't want to sit in some cold cave with dim light".
Of course that's silly, but the anti efficiency people, the pro "just generate more power!" folks, just push that meme and mindset, and have been very successful at it.
The "generate more power"! folks, as their top (and a lot of times only) emphasis, nuke or otherwise, make as much (non)sense as the "drill, baby drill"! folks do when it comes to transportation fuels. Want to save oil? Pretty easy, here's just one way, push three or four cylinder cars over sixes and eights. Heck, I bet single person light commuter cars could be run with just two cylinder engines today. Most people and uses for basic transportation have absolutely no need whatsoever for larger six or eight cylinder engines, and vehicles that can easily do two or three times the maximum posted speed limits. Just wasting fuel, because they can.
Back to electricity, look at most homes today, thoroughly dismal levels of insulation or planned air in or out, not even built tight, wasting huge amounts of electricity to keep ACs running near non stop in the summer, or if electric heat of some kind, wasting huge amounts of electricity in the winter. How about all that massive outside huge commercial advertising that burns all night long in big cities, or all those lit up and unoccupied offices? I am always gobsmacked whenever I visit a larger city at night to see this huge lit up disneyland/vegas blinking whooshing cascading panorama of excessive ostentatious consumption. It's like every big city is in this race to see how many light photons they can transmit to the space aliens or something, when actually zero of that advertising nonsense is really needed to illuminate the streets for people. They *could* get by with non electric commercial signage, and just have to deal with people only reading their signs in the daylight.
Can't do that though, got to be massive electricity energy hogs.
There's just tons of examples there. A huge amount of this commuting that goes on to go sit in front of a computer screen, moving meatbags twice a day by the tens of millions, by any means, personal or mass transit, instead of moving electrons and having a lot more people just stay home and work with better broadband deployment. And that would, in turn, reduce this artificial "need" for so many huge office towers for those commuters to go sit in all day in front of a computer screen, that require tremendous energy to build and maintain. Big office towers came about when we had no real way to move information except physically, and then it just got held over as we entered the electrical and digitized age, just inertia. They just aren't neeeded as much as we use them today, to some huge degree. gigawatts of wasted power and gigatons of extra pollution or whatever, just to maintain the ebenzer scrooge and bob cratchet office space model.
You see, there's not as much *profit* involved in selling people less energy for accomplishing the same task, there's *less* profit, much less, and that's the real bottom line and the barely hidden little secret the energy industry really doesn't want you to think about.
They want to keep demand as high as possible, and always increasing, not reduce it, to keep costs and profits higher. Just being more efficient and adopting better usage policies and practices is therefore always the very bottom lowest tier effort and emphasis, generally speaking, when it comes to big governmental policies and big energy selling business practice.
I think we would be much better served if conservation and practical usage had equal billing with just "more production".