French contractor Bouygues is gearing up to take on nuclear new-build work in the UK, a week after John Hutton, the secretary of state for business, announced an escalation in the government’s energy programme.
Building 20th June 2008 more >>
The Government faces one further crucial parliamentary test before the summer holidays: on an issue that has attracted far less public attention than either 42 days’ detention or the Lisbon treaty but which is much more likely to come into operation and have a wide ranging impact. The Planning Bill proposes to streamline and accelerate decisions on big infrastructure projects such as nuclear power stations, waste sites, airports, wind farms and motorways. The final Commons stages have been delayed by more than a fortnight already in an attempt to defuse opposition by backbench Labour MPs, and they will now take place next Wednesday.
Times 20th June 2008 more >>
Letter from Steuart Campbell: Professor Stephen Salter’s use of the estimated cost of dealing with radioactive waste being handled by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (about £73 billion) (Letters, 18 June) is wrong and perverse. He must know that most of the sites being dealt with by the NDA are not power stations and that the few that are (BNFL’s Magnox stations) have a waste stream more costly to deal with than those from more modern stations. Consequently, his comparison is flawed. The cost of dealing with waste from British Energy’s stations is fully incorporated in their operational cost, building an adequate decommissioning fund. Stations yet to be built would, likewise, make such a provision, leaving no costs to be met by taxpayers.
Scotsman 20th June 2008 more >>
The US military cannot locate hundreds of sensitive nuclear missile components, according to government officials familiar with a Pentagon report on nuclear safeguards. Robert Gates, US defence secretary, recently fired both the airforce’s chief of staff and secretary after an investigation blamed the airforce for the inadvertent shipment of nuclear missile nose cones to Taiwan.
FT 20th June 2008 more >>
The Pentagon has played down reports that the US military cannot locate hundreds of sensitive nuclear missile components. Several government officials told the FT on Wednesday a secret Pentagon report into nuclear safeguards had found the air force could not account for many components previously included in its inventory. One said more than 1,000 were missing.
FT 19th June 2008 more >>
Britain is struggling to meet its own ‘woefully inadequate’ targets for producing renewable energy, say MPs. We are ‘highly unlikely’ to be able to get ten per cent of our electricity from green sources by 2010. And this ‘lack of urgency’ means that there is little chance of attaining the EU goal of meeting all energy needs – including for transport and heating – from renewable sources by 2020. However, complex funding arrangements, skill shortages and lengthy waits for planning consent hampered green technology, said the Innovation, Univer sities, Science and Skills committee.
Metro 18th June 2008 more >>
Ministers should start by amending the Energy Bill to guarantee a premium payment to homes, businesses and communities that generate green energy. Small-scale renewable energy systems could supply up to 40 per cent of UK electricity – but financial help is needed to make this happen.
FoE Press Release 19th June 2008 more >>
“Our system costs half as much as quota systems such as you have in the UK and Italy and is much more effective,” said the German deputy environment minister, Matthias Machnig, during a visit to London today. “I have the figures.” The German FIT had added no more than 5% to energy bills and cost about 4.4bn in 2006, he said. It also saved 140m tonnes of carbon last year, he added. UK trade minister Digby Jones recently dismissed the FIT as “too expensive and too bureaucratic”. But, said Machnig: “The cost is equivalent to less than 2 a month for the average family. This is not all that much.”
Guardian 18th June 2008 more >>
Britain could invest more than £100bn in renewable energy over the next decade and still fail to meet an EU target on clean technology, the
government’s own renewables advisers have warned. The Renewables Advisory Board (RAB), made up of senior figures from across the industry, says the best the UK could really hope for is to generate 14% of its energy from sustainable sources by 2020. The EU has set Britain a target of 15% renewable energy generation by then.
Guardian 19th June 2008 more >>
The Renewables Advisory Board has reported that the UK could generate 14% of its total energy from renewables by 2020 if a set of identified radical policy changes are put into effect quickly. These would include a 30% increase in energy production from renewables in the built environment sector. This would need to be retrofitted to existing stock, and would probably require installation of district-wide heat networks.
A2Media 18th June 2008 more >>
Business Green 18th June 2008 more >>
2020 Vision: How the UK can meet its target of 15% renewable energy. Renewable Advisory Board, June 2008. more >>
Greenpeace CHP Report
Industries across the UK could generate as much electricity as 10 nuclear power stations and halve gas imports by installing or extending plants that generate energy while using the waste heat to warm local buildings. A report by P yry Energy Consulting, commissioned by Greenpeace, analysing the UK’s potential for combined heat and power units – which capture the heat from the electricity generation process and recycle it – found nine sites where CHP could be applied or extended.
FT 19th June 2008 more >>
The energy produced by power plants that provide both heat and electricity could be almost tripled in the UK, according to an analysis of nine industrial sites. So-called combined heat and power (CHP) plants are far more efficient than conventional power stations because they harness heat that is normally wasted, by piping it to industrial or domestic users. The report was written by P yry Energy Consulting for Greenpeace, and the additional CHP energy generation it suggests is feasible on the nine sites is equivalent to the energy needs of more than two-thirds of UK homes and half the nation’s natural gas imports. Currently 5.5GW of electricity is produced by CHP plants, but the new report suggests there could be up to 16GW more, the equivalent of 8 nuclear power stations.
Guardian website 19th June 2008 more >>
Securing Power: Poyry report for Greenpeace: Summary. http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/files/pdfs/climate/industrialCHP_summary.pdf
Soaring energy prices could leave more than six million households struggling to pay their fuel bills by Christmas – the so-called fuel poverty trap – leaving in tatters government promises to eradicate the problem for the vulnerable by 2010.
Times 20th June 2008 more >>
Denis McShane: On energy, Germany opposes any EU policy aimed at developing nuclear power. German politicians have every right to reject nuclear power for the German nation. But an EU that wants to talk energy policy with Washington but cannot use the word “nuclear” is hardly a convincing partner.
Independent 20th June 2008 more >>
Iran is ready to negotiate a package of incentives proposed by the world’s major powers in a bid to contain Tehran’s nuclear programme, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Thursday.
AFX 19th June 2008 more >>
Merkel has again urged a re-think of the nuclear phase-out policy.
Mathaba 19th June 2008 more >>
EDF got permission from the country’s nuclear safety watchdog to resume building its 3.3 billion-euro ($5.1 billion) new-generation model in Normandy after work was halted last month on safety concerns.
Bloomberg 19th June 2008 more >>
India’s government and its communist allies appear headed for an imminent showdown over a nuclear energy deal with the United States, a clash that threatens to trigger early elections.
Reuters 19th June 2008 more >>