Sellafield

A Black Country subsidiary of components manufacturer Avingtrans has secured an £11m order to supply additional waste containers to nuclear reprocessing facility Sellafield. Maloney Metalcraft, based in Aldridge, designs, manufactures and services oil and gas extraction and processing equipment, including process plant for dehydration, sweetening, drying and compression. The waste containers will be supplied by a division of the business, Stainless Metalcraft, which is part of the main group’s Energy and Medical division.

Business Desk 26th June 2017 read more »

Posted: 26 June 2017

Bradwell

It has been reported that the unnecessary and controversial dissolution of fuel element debris (FED) at Bradwell ended on 17 June, 2017, i.e. 3 years after it started – and just in time for the meeting of the Bradwell Local Communities Liaison Council on 21 June. Peter Banks, a member of the Core Group of the Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG) and a West Mersea Town Councillor, reports that at the meeting ‘the atmosphere was tangibly different, presentations celebrated progress made rather than delivered with an air of concealment’. BANNG and others have spent a great deal of time over the past 3 plus years and gone to a great deal of trouble to try to stop FED dissolution. Meetings were held with the Environment Agency (EA), who seemed uneasy at what was happening at Bradwell. EA consultations were responded to fully and many articles were written. BANNG organised a Public Meeting in West Mersea in June, 2014 at which an expert in Marine Biology explained the dangers to the Blackwater from the release into it of FED effluent and at which the large audience made clear its opposition. ‘It is nothing short of an outrage and an insult to the Blackwater environment and communities that the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority persisted despite all the signs that dissolution with nitric acid was a failing technology,’ said Andy Blowers, the Chair of BANNG.

BANNG 23rd June 2017 read more »

The process of FED Dissolution at Bradwell has finished yet also effectively leaves a bitter ‘taste’ of potentially radioactive sludge in the Blackwater estuary. This was just one of the significant items of news from the latest Local Community Liaison Committee (LCLC) meetings held Wednesday 21st June 2017 attended by members of BANNG, West Mersea Town Councillors, representatives from other local councils and, notably, Cllr Paul Smith, leader of Colchester Borough Council.

Banksyboy 23rd June 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 June 2017

Sellafield

Firefighters at the Sellafield nuclear site have agreed to take industrial action in a dispute over pay. A spokesman for the GMB union, which represents 63 firefighters at the site, said the action would be 24-hour strikes starting in July. He said members felt they were not getting the right pay and were doing work above their role. Sellafield Ltd said further talks are planned for 30 June but “arrangements are in place” to cope with action.

BBC 23rd June 2017 read more »

Posted: 24 June 2017

Bradwell

BRADWELL Power Station has taken a step closer to being fully decommissioned after a major source of radioactive waste has been removed from the site. The nuclear power station has now successfully dealt with all of its Fuel Element Debris (FED) waste, which represents an important step towards its planned closure. Magnox Ltd used new techniques and solutions to manage the waste, which consisted of the magnesium alloy cladding that surrounds the nuclear fuel. The material was dissolved in acid, and Magnox are now exploring new options to dispose of the waste. As a result the length of time expected to complete the process has been reduced by a year.

Clacton & Frinton Gazette 22nd June 2017 read more »

World Nuclear News 22nd June 2017 read more »

Energy Live News 22nd June 2017 read more »

Posted: 23 June 2017

Russia

Two decades ago, a green four-car train would make the rounds every few months to Russia’s snowy Kola Peninsula to cart nuclear fuel and radioactive waste more than 3000 kilometers south from the Arctic to the Ural Mountains. At the time, the lonely rail artery was the center of a logistical and financial bottleneck that made Northwest Russia, home of the once feared Soviet nuclear fleet, a toxic dumping ground shrouded in military secrecy. More than a hundred rusted out submarines bobbed in the icy waters at dockside, their reactors still loaded with nuclear fuel, threating to sink or worse. Further from shore and under the waves laid other submarines and nuclear waste intentionally scuttled by the navy. Still more radioactive spent fuel was piling up in storage tanks and open-air bins, on military bases and in shipyards. One of those places was Andreyeva Bay, a run down nuclear submarine maintenance yard just 55 kilometers from the Norwegian border. Since the birth of the nuclear navy in the 1960s, the yard came to be a dumping ground for 22,000 spent nuclear fuel assemblies offloaded from hundreds of submarines. Cracks in storage pools made worse by the hard Arctic freeze threatened to contaminate the Barents Sea. At one point, experts even feared the radioactive morgue might spark an uncontrolled nuclear chain reaction.

Bellona 23rd June 2017 read more »

Posted: 23 June 2017

Bradwell

The site of the former Bradwell nuclear power station has now successfully dealt with all of its Fuel Element Debris (FED) waste – a major source of intermediate level radioactive waste at the Essex site.

NDA 21st June 2017 read more »

Posted: 22 June 2017

Decommissioning

The nuclear industry is looking at how it might use technologies being used in the decommissioning of North Sea oil and gas installations. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) is overseeing the dismantling of several UK sites, including Dounreay. Representatives from the NDA and oil and gas experts have met in Aberdeen to share information. One of the areas covered was the decommissioning of oil pipelines. The event was held at Aberdeen’s Oil and Gas Technology Centre. The NDA said it was actively looking outside its sector for technologies to use in the decommissioning of nuclear power sites. Among major Scottish oil and gas installations being decommissioned are the Buchan Alpha floating production vessel off Aberdeen, and the Beatrice complex in the Moray Firth.

BBC 19th June 2017 read more »

Posted: 20 June 2017

Sellafield

Sellafield boss awarded OBE for services to the nuclear industry “An inspirational role model at Sellafield has been awarded an OBE for services to the nuclear industry”. The OBE is for “budging radioactive sludge” from one place to another and repacking, and reclassifying highly radioactive wastes while the industry and our nuclear headed government is gearing up to produce ever more, even hotter wastes from new nuclear build.

Radiation Free Lakeland 18th June 2017 read more »

Posted: 19 June 2017

Sellafield

The concrete is in dreadful condition, degraded and fractured, and if the ponds drain, the Magnox fuel will ignite and that would lead to a massive release of radioactive material,” nuclear safety expert John Large told the Ecologist magazine. “I am very disturbed at the run-down condition of the structures and support services. In my opinion there is a significant risk that the system could fail. There are leading environmentalists who say that we need coking coal for the steel making process. Even if this is true (much steel is recycled) the “necessary” coking coal mine should not be anywhere near the worlds biggest biohazard which is Sellafield. This article from 2013 proves the point. The last thing that we need near Sellafield is induced Siesmic activity.

Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole 17th June 2017 read more »

An inspirational role model at Sellafield has been awarded an OBE for services to the nuclear industry. Dorothy Gradden, head of programme delivery legacy ponds, has been recognised in the latest Queen’s Birthday Honours list. The Beckermet woman has in charge of the clean-up of the two Sellafield legacy fuel ponds.

Carlisle News and Star 17th June 2017 read more »

Posted: 18 June 2017

Radwaste

[Machine Translation] It’s not eternity, but it’s like it. Hundreds of millions of years. We leave a poisoned gift to a humanity of the future of which we know nothing. Neither their language, whether they are hordes in rags armed with cudgels or a peaceful technological civilization in the apogee, knowing how to recycle this radioactive waste … It is hardly if we decipher the intentions of the civilizations Maya or Egyptian women far away from us by a few thousand years ago … Reprocessing, vitrification, burial, so many ways to admit that we have not found any really satisfactory solution for our radioactive waste bins. Waste is produced exponentially, and we do not know what to do with it. Neither fuel rod waste nor dismantling tanks, accidentally or unintentionally contaminated water, or radioactive drums that have been thrown randomly on land and in the seas. Not for eternity, no, but for so long a time that it is, even in thought, unimaginable. Engineers then find themselves with the responsibility of having to think about deeply anthropological issues, which clearly go beyond them.

France Culture 15th June 2017 read more »

Posted: 16 June 2017