Is it really faster to deploy solar than nuclear power?

In brief, no. Ask an industrial engineer to study the wind, solar and nuclear deployment cycles. I am confident that she would quickly conclude that wind and solar are dramatically slower to deploy – limited by the massive physical scale required to achieve meaningful electrical generation from such dilute energy sources. E.g., non-dispatchable wind power requires roughly ten times the steel and concrete as required for dispatchable nuclear power. 

At Climate Spectator Geoff Russell uses actual historical data to demonstrate the relative deployment speeds of solar and nuclear power (only the UAE nuclear projection in Geoff’s chart is not actual data). I cannot improve on the wording Geoff chose for his conclusion:

(…snip…) the French have been producing electricity with nuclear reactors for less than 80g of CO2 per kwh for over 20 years. The Germans are stuck at 450g of CO2 and still building more coal power stations.

Being cool, profitable and popular is fine, but irrelevant. We need a reliable technology that delivers deep energy emission cuts and we need it fast.

It’s rapidly becoming crystal clear that the biggest enemy we face in preventing ongoing climate destabilistation is the anti-nuclear movement. They have cost the planet two decades which could otherwise have seen many more countries with clean electricity, and now they are running a distracting strategy promoting technologies which are intrinsically slow to roll out. They have, in effect, created an energy growth vacuum being filled by coal seam gas which is quick to build but which won’t prevent further climate destabilisation. 

I recommend that you read Geoff’s complete essay, which is well-resourced with citations for all the relevant data.