Energy secretary Chris Huhne delivered the first of what are to be annual energy statements to parliament today, committing the government to overhauling the energy industry so as to provide affordable, secure, low-carbon energy. The statement sketched out the government’s intention to reduce energy demand from domestic premises, promote renewable technologies, support the carbon price, overhaul electricity pricing incentives and twist the arm of the private sector to stump up for new nuclear facilities. Huhne also said the government will incentivise micro-generation at both domestic and local community level and roll out smart meters as the fist step in building a smart distribution grid. He said fossil fuels still have a place in a low-carbon future, but only with carbon capture and storage.
Business Green 27th July 2010 more >>
Energy companies are likely to need guaranteed payments to invest in new nuclear power stations, the chief executive of Centrica, the owner of British Gas, has said. Sam Laidlaw was speaking as the company reported a 53 per cent rise in underlying profits to 1.34bn ($2.09bn), helped by near-doubled profits from its residential gas and electricity supply business. Centrica owns 20 per cent of British Energy, which runs UK nuclear power stations, and is considering investing in new plants with EDF of France, which owns the remaining 80 per cent of British Energy. However, Mr Laidlaw said the governments proposed floor price for carbon emissions permits, which would guarantee a cost advantage for low-carbon electricity generation, was unlikely to boost investment in new nuclear plants. If that were the only incentive, it would have to be set at a pretty high level, he said, adding that additional support would probably be needed. That could mean a feed-in tariff to guarantee the price for low-carbon electricity, or payments to companies as reward for having available generation capacity.
FT 29th July 2010 more >>
Areva and EDF, Frances nuclear groups, must end years of bickering and form a strategic partnership to win overseas contracts that could see EDF raise its stake in the nuclear reactor maker, the French government said. State-owned Areva was given the go-ahead for a 15 per cent capital increase to finance investments, in which EDF could raise its 2.4 per cent stake to 7 per cent, according to officials. The strategic partnership will focus on bids for contracts in countries which do not have a nuclear industry. The idea that EDF might take a bigger stake in Areva is controversial. The 15 per cent capital increase equates to between 2bn-3bn, according to analysts, and is necessary because Arevas finances have been strained by construction delays and cost overruns at a nuclear plant in Finland.
FT 29th July 2010 more >>
If French President Nicholas Sarkozy had hoped the arrangement would put an end to a bitter rivalry between Proglio and “Atomic” Anne Lauvergeon, Areva’s chief executive, he may well be disappointed. “Knives are out, the fight is far from being over,” a person familiar with the matter told Dow Jones Newswires.
Wall Street Journal 28th July 2010 more >>
Nuclear power company Westinghouse Electric Company has bagged a contract from Enresa (Empresa Nacional de Residuos Radiactivos) to dismantle the reactor vessel (RV) internals at the Jose Cabrera Nuclear Power Station (also known as Zorita), located in Almonacid de Zorita, 43 miles east of Madrid, Spain.
Energy Business Review 28th July 2010 more >>
THE key areas to be affected by the proposed building of a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point are being offered extra support. The Sedgemoor and West Somerset district councils’ aim is to help communities understand EDF’s second stage proposals for the new power station. EDF consulted communities in the spring about its initial proposals for developments of worker accommodation, freight handling and transport routes associated with the site.
Sedgemoor and West Somerset councils helped generate responses to these proposals from a broad range of community stakeholders.
This is Somerset 22nd July 2010 more >>
Somerset’s landscape could look very different in the future – there could be wind farms on the Somerset Levels, two new reactors at Hinkley Point, and a barrage, or a series of lagoons to harness the water power in the Severn estuary.
BBC 28th July 2010 more >>
CAMPAIGNERS have vowed to keep fighting for a Bridgwater bypass to avoid “massive traffic problems” if a third power plant at Hinkley Point goes ahead.
This is the West Country 28th July 2010 more >>
Annual plutonium stockpile figures.
HSE 28th July 2010 more >>
Low Level Waste
Cumbrian campaign group Radiation Free Lakeland are stepping-up the fight to prevent nuclear waste development at Keekle Head and Lillyhall. More than 180 letters of objection have been collected and sent to Cumbria County Council’s Development Control Committee. Earlier this year Keekle Head (artist’s impression alongside) applied to dispose of nuclear waste while the Lillyhall landfill site, which is actively receiving nuclear waste, applied to dispose of even higher level wastes.
Get Noticed Online 28trh July 2010 more >>
Former Sellafield boss Barry Snelson has defended his moves to try and halt industrial action over a pay dispute that was taking place as the site was being privatised.
Carlisle News and Star 28th July 2010 more >>
BRITAIN is to attempt to tap into the multi-billion pound Indian nuclear power industry by exporting expertise and technology to the country for the first time. In a move campaigners called “a complete disaster” that undermined the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, Business Secretary Vince Cable said Britain would in future approve export licences for the technology in a bid to boost jobs and forge stronger trade links with the burgeoning Indian economy. Previous UK administrations have resisted sharing the expertise with India, because it has not signed the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons Treaty (NPT) that restricts the development of new nuclear weapons.
Scotsman 29th July 2010 more >>
Guardian 29th July 2010 more >>
In a keynote speech in Bangalore at Infosys, India’s largest IT company, the Prime Minister discussed cooperation on science and technology. He said: UK and India research funders have committed up to £60 million worth of jointly-funded research into climate change, water and food security and disease prevention. British and Indian scientists will collaborate on £2 million worth of research that will help nuclear power stations to be safer, more efficient and produce less waste.
BIS 28th July 2010 more >>
The United Kingdom is to follow in the footsteps of Russia, the USA and France as it looks to allow the export of civil nuclear technology to India. Business secretary Vince Cable announced the plans while on a visit to technology-hub Bangalore with a governmental delegation led by UK prime minister David Cameron.
Nuclear Engineering International 28th July 2010 more >>
Evening Standard 28th July 2010 more >>
Telegraph 28th July 2010 more >>
Business and Enterprise Minister Mark Prisk has today announced a £1.5 million investment in the development of wave energy technology during a visit to the South West RDA’s Wave Hub project at Hayle.
BIS 29th July 2010 more >>
More than 5000 jobs could be created by the development of planned wind turbine manufacturing sites around port locations in Scotland, Alex Salmond said yesterday. Under the plans, 11 sites across three regional clusters would manufacture 750 complete offshore wind turbines a year, for use both in Scotland and for the export market. About 223 million of private and public investment would be needed to upgrade the sites, creating 5180 jobs with an annual economic impact of up to 294.5m each year. Stage two of the national renewables infrastructure plan, published yesterday by Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, was welcomed by the First Minister as he and Cabinet colleagues met in Dornoch. The sites in question are Leith, Dundee, Nigg, the Energy Park at Methil, Hunterston, Aberdeen, Arnish, Campbeltown/Machrihanish , Ardersier, Kishorn and Peterhead. However, Salmond warned: Unlocking the potential of these sites requires initial investment from both the private and public sectors. This report underlines the case for early investment and therefore its now urgent for the Treasury to release Scotlands 185m fossil fuel levy to further develop the renewables industry.
Herald 28th July 2010 more >>
Thomas Docherty has written to the Nuclear Directorate to seek assurances the submarines stored at Rosyth Dockyard are being properly looked after. He wrote to the directorate after discovering a second nuclear sub at the Fife yard had been holed below the waterline. Seven decommissioned subs are currently held afloat at Rosyth, including four Polaris vessels: Revenge, Resolution, Renown and Repulse. All of them have had their highly toxic fuel removed but parts of the vessels, including the reactor compartments, are still contaminated. Last week The Courier revealed a second sub sprang a leak after being attacked by a common microbiological organism that emits sulphuric acid.
Dundee Courier 27th July 2010 more >>
Next week it will be 65 years since the first atomic bombs were dropped. On August 6, 1945 the Japanese city of Hiroshima was wiped out by one. Three days later the same happened to Nagasaki. About 110,000 people died immediately and at least twice as many died later from burns, radiation sickness, cancer and other after-effects. It was the first and last time they were used in war. And ever since we’ve been building new ones.
Carlisle News and Star 29th July 2010 more >>
The European Union and six states backing a multi-billion-dollar nuclear fusion project said Wednesday they had reached a deal on the financing and timetable for the experimental reactor. An explosion in costs had cast a cloud over the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), which aims to make the nuclear fusion process that fuels the sun a practical energy source on Earth.
EU Business 29th July 2010 more >>