Sizewell

The development of a new Sizewell C power station on the Suffolk coast could bring hundreds of new jobs to Ipswich, it has emerged. But the town could have to fight off interest from both Colchester and Chelmsford to become home to a new administration centre for both Sizewell and another power station at Bradwell, near Maldon, in Essex.

Ipswich Star 22nd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Sizewell B

The first cask containing used nuclear fuel from the Sizewell B pressurised water reactor has been placed within the unit’s new dry fuel store. The milestone marks the first use of dry used fuel storage technology in the UK.

World Nuclear News 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Moorside

Korea Electric Power (KEPCO) is reportedly planning to acquire Toshiba’s interest in the UK nuclear joint venture (JV) project, NuGen. The company is currently negotiating with Japanese firm Toshiba and France-based Engie to purchase a stake in NuGen, reports Reuters. NuGen is planning to develop three reactors at the Moorside site on the coast of Cumbria, which are expected to start producing electricity by 2025. NuGen is expected to meet approximately 7% of the UK’s future electricity needs. As per the local media reporters, KEPCO is planning to acquire 60% interest, which is owned by troubled Toshiba, in the joint venture, KEPCO CEO Cho Hwan-eik was quoted by Reuters as saying: “We will jump into (the deal) most quickly once its debt, equity structure is determined.”

Energy Business Review 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Brexit

Clare Moody is Labour MEP for the South West and Gibraltar: Euratom is betrayed for the sake of hard Brexit – risking our nuclear industry. We now know that Theresa May will trigger Article 50 next week, firing the starting gun on our exit from the European Union. What is less well known is the Government will also be starting the process of leaving Euratom, the treaty that safeguards our nuclear industry – from power stations to world class research to radiotherapy. In our fast-moving politics last week we saw the Government do a spectacular U-Turn on its Budget announcement of the week before. The U-Turn followed the Prime Minister and the Chancellor breaking a clear manifesto promise without apparently realising it, demonstrating a level of competence that should deeply worry us all. This is the same Government that we have to rely on to deliver an acceptable deal for the UK through the phenomenally complex negotiations on our departure from the EU. I want to be very clear that my criticism is about the competence of the government in its failure to recognise or acknowledge what it was doing, not that they changed their minds. In fact, I am firmly in favour of Government reversing bad decisions. What is more is that I have a suggestion for another U-Turn, one which could restore a semblance of competence and make our lives safer in the process. Now is the time to back away from triggering Article 50 in the Euratom Treaty.

Labour List 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

France

Redundancies and cost savings are compromising safety at French nuclear group Areva’s nuclear waste recycling facility at La Hague in Normandy, the firm’s unions say in an internal document. In an undated and unsigned note from the Areva La Hague Health and Safety Committee (CHSCT), seen by Reuters, the plant’s unions say that the Areva management’s “frantic cost-cutting is jeopardizing long-established procedures” to prevent the risk of technical failures and human error. French nuclear safety authority ASN told Reuters it had received a copy of the note in November and had consequently inspected the plant, concluding that safety levels were acceptable. However, it confirmed an incident in late 2016 – highlighted in the union note – in which several batches of highly radioactive waste were not properly processed during vitrification. It also said it would remain vigilant about issues signaled by the unions and may adapt its monitoring procedures.

Reuters 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Kenya

China General Nuclear (CGN) and the Kenya Nuclear Electricity Board (KNEB) have extended their cooperation in the development of nuclear energy in the African country with the signing of two new agreements.

World Nuclear News 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Renewables – solar

Southern Water has appointed Forrest as the sole contractor to work on a five-year renewable energy framework which will see the utility install solar across its portfolio. Under the contract Forrest’s energy division will design, supply, install, operate and maintain ground and roof-mounted solar systems to help Southern Water increase the amount of renewable energy it produces on-site. Southern Water has already identified three such projects; a 1.9MW ground-mount solar array at Testwood Water Supply Works, a 1.5MW project at the company’s site in Otterbourne and an 850kW project in Hardham.

Solar Power Portal 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Energy Efficiency

The Green Deal will be re-branded over the summer as the new private sector owners prepare to re-launch the failed government scheme with improvements to how finance loans can be accessed, alongside a direct marketing strategy.

Solar Power Portal 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Climate

A new “carbon law”, modelled on Moore’s law in computing, has been proposed as a roadmap for beating climate change. It sees carbon emissions halving every decade, while green energy continues to double every five years. The carbon law’s proponents are senior climate-change scientists and they argue it provides a simple, broad but quantitative plan that could drive governments and businesses to make urgently needed carbon cuts, particularly at a time when global warming is falling off the global political agenda. The carbon law shows how global warming can be beaten, said Gareth Redmond-King at WWF: “It’s important to remember that there is genuine hope. This inspiring vision of change reaffirms that we still have time, provided we commit to serious, ambitious and urgent action to control our environmental impact. Every journey, however long and complicated, is easier with a clear map.”

Guardian 23rd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 March 2017

Moorside

Korea Electric Power Corp has ruled out buying Toshiba’s controlling stake in Westinghouse, but confirmed it is interested in joining the NuGen consortium that is planning to build a new UK nuclear plant. The decision by the South Korean state-run utility is a blow to Toshiba’s efforts to find a buyer for its troubled US nuclear subsidiary as the Japanese conglomerate grapples with the worst financial crisis in its history. Kepco had been seen by industry experts as the only potential acquirer of Westinghouse that would be acceptable from a national security perspective. Analysts note that prospective suitors from China and Russia risk being blocked by the US and the UK, while other possible bidders including Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Hitachi have already ruled themselves out. However, Mr Cho said that Kepco would be keen to take Toshiba’s 60 per cent stake in NuGen, pending more clarity on the sale conditions. Korea is hungry for more overseas work but it already has its own competitive technology. There are few incentives for Kepco to buy Westinghouse, given the huge financial risks involved.

FT 22nd March 2017 read more »

A South Korean utility company has confirmed that it wants to buy a stake in the NuGen nuclear project in Cumbria, but it has ruled out buying Westinghouse, the troubled reactor-maker for the venture. Cho Hwan-eik, chief executive of Kepco, said it wanted to “jump into” a deal for NuGen, which is 60 per cent-owned by Toshiba, of Japan, and 40 per cent by Engie, of France, once the debt and equity terms on offer had been decided. However, Mr Cho said that Kepco had “no plan” to take on Toshiba’s majority stake in Westinghouse, which is due to provide three of its AP1000 reactors for the £15 billion project near Sellafield. The AP1000 reactors are close to securing regulatory approval for use in the UK, a process that has taken years. Any switch could spell more years of delays.

Times 23rd March 2017 read more »

Korea Electric Power Corp (Kepco) has revealed it is in talks to buy a stake in NuGen, a nuclear joint venture between Toshiba and Engie that’s building three reactors in Britain. NuGen’s new build at the Moorside site on the coast of Cumbria plans to generate electricity by 2025, but Toshiba’s troubled past few months has called its ability to hit deadlines in the UK into question.

City AM 22nd March 2017 read more »

Carlisle News & Star 22nd March 2017 read more »

The latest Generic Design Assessment (GDA) update on Moorside’s Westinghouse AP1000 reactor has been published by the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR). Covering the period November 2016 to January 2017, the update suggests that all outstanding assessment issues will be cleared up by the target date of the end of March 2017 – a very different picture to that painted by ONR in its previous AP1000 update (May to October 2016) which warned that ‘our delivery confidence for this project is amber/red, which means that successful delivery of the project is in doubt with major risks or issues apparent in a number of key areas’. Still being given the amber traffic light treatment by ONR, there remain a number of issues to be resolved. These include the not insignificant engineering issue of the reactor’s structural integrity on which there is still technical work outstanding on Westinghouse’s updated design calculations for the reactor pressure vessel, pressuriser, steams generator and passive heat removal heat exchanger. The Category 1 Programme for Control & Instrumentation is also flashing amber.

Core 22nd March 2017 read more »

UK regulators expect to complete the Generic Design Assessment (GDA) of the AP1000 and the UK Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (UK ABWR) in March and December this year, respectively. They have also reported the start of the GDA of the UK HPR1000, which they expect to complete in 2021. In their latest periodic report assessing new nuclear reactor designs, covering the period November 2016 to January 2017, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), the Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales, have provided an update on work they have been carrying out on their GDA of the Westinghouse and Hitachi-GE reactor designs, as well as the start of a GDA for General Nuclear System’s UK HPR1000.

World Nuclear News 22nd March 2017 read more »

Posted: 23 March 2017