The European Commission intends to propose EU- wide rules on the disposal of nuclear waste by the end of 2010, an official said Thursday. “Nuclear waste management is an important area which needs to be addressed by both industry and national governments (…) the role of the EU is to set a common framework for the establishment of national waste management programs,” said Marlene Holzner, spokeswoman for energy commissioner Gunther Oettinger, during a briefing in Brussels.
Earth Times 18th Feb 2010 more >>
Local councils have opposed two of the 10 proposed new nuclear reactor sites in England and Wales, accusing the government of trying to railroad them through under its new planning regime. The councils will make the first challenge to the controversial new Infrastructure Planning Commission, which was established to speed up the planning process for large projects and starts handling planning applications next month. The government closed its consultation on the planning statements yesterday. In its submission, South Gloucestershire council, which is opposing the planned E.ON and RWE reactor at Oldbury, said the risk of flooding had been underestimated. It also said councils did not have the resources to fully assess the applications for nuclear companies. It added: “The draft [national planning statement] effectively confers a presumption in favour of development.” The Guardian has also learned that Colchester borough council and West Mersea town council are objecting to the nomination of Bradwell, which is owned by EDF, as a new reactor site. Essex county council has yet to make a decision. Professor Andy Blowers, a former government adviser on nuclear waste, said: “What is the point of the IPC or any consultation if you are going to have the nomination rammed down your throat?”
Guardian 23rd Feb 2010 more >>
Bill Gates has called for a dramatic increase in R&D investment for low-carbon technologies, including his own new pet project into advanced nuclear reactors, warning that developed countries will need to completely decarbonise the energy they use by 2050 if they are to avert the worst effects of climate change.
Business Green 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
The United Arab Emirates and Scotland have much in common. Both are small nations whose economies have been geared to the production and export of oil and both are rich in future renewable energy potential. The empty deserts of the UAE have the capacity to produce vast quantities of clean solar energy, while the coastal waters of Scotland could generate copious wind, wave and tidal energy. However, while the UAE has just awarded a contract for four nuclear power plants, in Scotland we are in the process of winding down our nuclear capacity. Modern nuclear plants are compact machines with a design life of 60 years and provide continuous output of firm base-load power. The UAE has, therefore, chosen a prudent policy that will guarantee a supply of clean energy into the far future.
Herald 23rd Feb 2010 more >>
Energy Minister Lord Hunt today welcomed the level of public engagement around the consultation on National Policy Statements on Energy. The consultation, which closes today, gives the public the opportunity to influence and comment on the draft NPSs at a national and local level.
DECC 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
South Gloucestershire Council, in its response, raised a number of objections including the visual impact of the cooling towers and the towers’ effect on migrating birds. It has been suggested that a new nuclear power station would have to be built with cooling towers 70 to 200 metres high. The existing station is only 54 metres high. The council emphasised the flooding risks at the site and surrounding area, and the additional traffic pressure that would be put on the M5 during construction. Concerns about the lack of a national repository for nuclear waste and potential health risks associated with living near to a nuclear power station, were also raised.
Gloucestershire Gazette 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
FIVE anti-nuclear power protesters blocked the entrance to Sizewell power station today. Representatives from the People Power not Nuclear Power Coalition wearing arm tubes locked themselves on to concrete just under the barrier at the main entrance around 6.40am. The demonstrators brought big black barrels with them daubed with ‘Don’t Nuke the Climate’. Other protesters are also there in support. The group said they are demonstrating against the flawed government consultation on nuclear new build – which ends today – and the dumping of local democracy.
Suffolk Evening Star 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Stop Nuclear Power 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Utility Week 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Sellafield has launched an investigation into claims that some staff were caught viewing porn and playing computer games at work. Bosses at the plant were today unable to confirm a report that a number of workers had resigned in the wake of the investigation. But a recent memo warned all staff at the nuclear plant that their internet use is constantly monitored.
Carlisle News and Star 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Secretary of State for Wales Peter Hain has been in Germany on a mission for an ambitious scheme to transform Anglesey into the UK ‘hub’ for wind energy and create hundreds of new low carbon jobs. Mr Hain visited the German North Sea port town of Bremerhaven, which has witnessed the creation of around 700 jobs over the past three years after becoming a renowned hub for offshore wind power generation. He saw some of the 185 or more companies now clustered around Bremerhaven harbour involved in the manufacture and fabrication of wind turbines, as well as suppliers and Research & Development companies.
News Wales 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Mr Rees also spoke enthusiastically about the prospect of a replacement for Wylfa nuclear power station. When it was put to him that Plaid disapproved of nuclear power, Mr Rees asked, rhetorically, how he could oppose a project that would bring up to 5,000 construction jobs and 1,000 permanent jobs. To heck, he seemed to be saying, with policy.
David Jones MP 21st Feb 2010 more >>
The Druid 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
David Heathcoat-Amory: We’ve got to get the electricity away from Hinkley Point when it is rebuilt, but it can’t be done with overhead pylons which are going to damage a very precious part of the Somerset countryside. We haven’t been offered the option of a submarine cable, I am demanding that that is investigated and included in the discussions.
This is the West Country 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
During the 1980s era of the “looney left” Labour councils would frequently declare themselves “Nuclear Free Zones.” Cllr Iain Lindley reminds us that this practice continues. Socialists can indulge in some agitprop at their Council Taxpayer’s expense by affiliating to Nuclear Free Local Authorities who promise that in return: “Your local council will be publicly demonstrating its opposition to nuclear power and nuclear weapons.” The organisation is based in Manchester Town Hall.
Conservative Home 23rd Feb 2010 more >>
The £37bn modernisation of Britain’s electricity network will not take place unless the Government seizes control and helps pay for the new “smart grid”, according to a group of MPs.The market alone cannot be trusted to provide the financing for such an enormous undertaking, according to a report from the select committee on energy and climate change.
Telegraph 23rd Feb 2010 more >>
Research Councils UK says a fusion power station could be in operation by 2030. Scientists in the UK have drawn up plans for the world’s first nuclear fusion power station, which could be online in 20 years. Unlike a conventional nuclear power station, nuclear fusion provides clean, safe, carbon-free power with a minimum of radioactive waste. However, up until now the theory has never been successfully put into practice due to the massive technical challenges.
Building 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Mark Z Jacobson: If our nation wants to reduce global warming, air pollution and energy instability, we should invest only in the best energy options. Nuclear energy isn’t one of them. Every dollar spent on nuclear is one less dollar spent on clean renewable energy and one more dollar spent on making the world a comparatively dirtier and a more dangerous place, because nuclear power and nuclear weapons go hand in hand.
CNN 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Constellation Energy Group closed on the $4.5bn sale of its nuclear assets last quarter, sending net profit soaring over year-ago results. The sale of 49.99pc of its nuclear business to French power generator EDF lifted Constellation’s earnings to $21.96/share, compared with a loss of $7.75/share during the 2008 period. Profit also increased on an adjusted basis – a measure that excludes accounting changes, discontinued operations and special items – to 30 /share from 3 /share.
Argus Media 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
The head of Iran’s nuclear programme has said the country will build two new uranium enrichment facilities within the next year. Ali Akbar Salehi, who is also Iran’s vice-president, said the new facilities would be built in the mountains to protect them from attack.
BBC 22nd Feb 2010 more >>
Five Nato states plan to call for the removal of all remaining US nuclear weapons on European soil in a move intended to spur global disarmament, officials said today. Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Norway and Luxembourg will make a joint declaration “in the next few weeks”, a Belgian official said, with the intention of influencing a growing debate within Nato over the usefulness of nuclear weapons in alliance strategy.
Guardian 23rd Feb 2010 more >>