JAPAN’S Toshiba is considering taking over a venture to build up to three nuclear reactors at Wylfa in Anglesey. The firm may team up with France’s GDF Suez to invest around £1 billion in the venture, which is called Horizon and was put up for sale by two German utilities last week. Toshiba owns Westinghouse, the reactor designer that was formerly owned by the UK government. GDF is a giant French utility with ambitions to take part in the UK’s new nuclear age. The Japanese powerhouse is also interested in investing in Oldbury, Gloucestershire, the other site owned by Horizon. This could mean it is involved in the construction of up to six new reactors to Westinghouse’s AP1000 design. A source said: “This could work out very well for Toshiba.” Any GDF decision on Wylfa may be influenced by its involvement in another nuclear consortium with Spain’s Iberdrola, called NuGen. It has plans to develop a power station at Sellafield on the Cumbrian coast. Yesterday GDF said it was focused on its Cumbria plan and did not comment on other consortia. It is understood that America’s General Electric and Japan’s Hitachi are also interested in Wylfa. Previously, there had been concerns that the UK’s new reactors would be dominated by French utilities building to a French design.
Power Engineering 1st Apr 2012 more >>
EDF Energy, the largest nuclear producer in the UK, stopped its 620-megawatt (MW) Hartlepool reactor 1 on Sunday, after restarting three other units on Saturday, the company said. “R1 at Hartlepool Power Station came offline at 15:39 British time on Sunday,” a spokeswoman said. EDF Energy restarted its Heysham 2-7, Hartlepool 2 and Dungeness B21 reactors on Saturday, which have a combined installed capacity of 1,830 MW.
Reuters 2nd Apr 2012 more >>
One fact largely overlooked was that nine German NPPs will still be operating for up to a decade. With 10 other German NPPS now offline, the nine still operating mean that Berlin has only halved its chances of a Fukushima Daiichi type disaster, not ended it. So, how prepared are German authorities to deal with an incident of Fukushimas magnitude? Not much, apparently.
Oil Price 2nd Apr 2012 more >>
Much of Japan’s Pacific coast would be inundated by a tsunami more than 34 metres (112 feet) high if an offshore earthquake as powerful as last year’s occurred, according to a government panel of experts. They report that a wave of such height could result from any tsunami unleashed by a magnitude-9.0 earthquake in the Nankai trough, which runs east of Japan’s main island of Honshu to the southern island of Kyushu. An earlier forecast in 2003 put the potential maximum height of such a tsunami at less than 20 metres (66 feet). The latest forecast shows a tsunami of up to 21 metres (69 feet) could strike near the Hamaoka nuclear plant on the south-eastern coast. Its operator, Chubu Electric Power Co, is building an 18-metre (59-foot) high sea wall to counter tsunamis. The wall is due to be completed next year.
Guardian 1st Apr 2012 more >>
Scottish independence would have ‘profound ramifications for UK’s nuclear deterent and for US-UK relations’ says American think-tank.
STV 1st Apr 2012 more >>
Press & Journal 2nd Apr 2012 more >>
Caroline Flint: Unless we address people’s concerns about prices, jobs and security, and show that cutting our emissions and tackling climate change will leave them and their families better off, the same old voices will carry on peddling the same old rubbish about the transition to a low-carbon economy being a burden on bill-payers and a threat to jobs and growth. In the end, if we’re serious about building public support for tackling climate change in the UK, it has to be about bills, not bears.
Guardian 2nd Apr 2012 more >>