29 June 2013

Hinkley

The UK government has announced that EDF Energy’s proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant is eligible for a multi-billion pound loan guarantee.

World Nuclear News 28th June 2013 read more »

Western Morning News 28th June 2013 read more »

Energy Supplies

The risk of power blackouts could increase from one every 47 years now, to one every four years by the middle of this decade if government policies fail to bring down electricity demand, energy regulator Ofgem has warned. The Times says ” Britain faces blackout” in a front page story. And according to the front page of today’s Daily Mail the National Grid has plans to “ration” electricity. But Ofgem says disruption to supplies is not ” imminent or likely”, and National Grid argues its proposals for coping with the problem have been misinterpreted by the media.

Carbon Brief 28th June 2013 read more »

For a post-imperial power still somehow declining to accept its place in the world, electricity rationing would surely provide the most sobering of perspectives. After all, if domestic power consumers are paying vast bills to subsidise whatever remains of our manufacturing industry to lie silent just so they can have a cup of tea and watch The One Show when they get in from work, I don’t imagine even the maddest of hawks would be fussing about whether we had aircraft carriers or not. No one could possibly even mention the idea of our seat on the UN security council without dissolving into gallows cackles about the lunacy of it all.

Guardian 28th June 2013 read more »

Offered a choice between blackouts and even higher energy bills, consumers in the seventh-biggest economy in the world apparently opted for the higher bills. Any attempt to portray this as a public endorsement of energy policies is risible. It should never have got to the point where we were faced with such a choice.

Telegraph 27th June 2013 read more »

Energy Costs

Mark Lynas: Here’s the important point about the new figures: nuclear is likely to be highly competitive with all the renewables, and may still be the cheapest option. Current negotiations around the ‘strike price’ to be paid for nuclear-generated electricity from Hinkley Point C are understood to be converging on a price in the £90-100 range – my guess is that the final deal will see the UK Government paying just under £95 per megawatt-hour for nuclear electricity under the new system (I’d put money on this – but not much!). This means that nuclear will cost about the same as onshore wind, and may even be slightly cheaper, as onshore wind has a strike price of £100 until 2017, after which it falls to £95.

Mark Lynas 29th June 2013 read more »

Radwaste

The first day of the Public Inquiry started yesterday. The more people who object to one of Cumbria’s most important rivers and wildlife areas being turned into a nuclear dump the better – there is still time to object and still time to ask to speak in person at the Inquiry which will last at least 8 days possibly two weeks.

Radiation Free Lakeland 26th June 2013 read more »

Wylfa

PLAID Cymru candidate for Ynys Mon Rhun ap Iorwerth has pledged to fight to ensure development of a new nuclear power plant at Wylfa B is in the interests of the people of Anglesey. The 40-year-old former political journalist and presenter of BBC’s Newyddion programme on S4C made a decision to quit his job to battle for a seat in the Assembly after Ieuan Wyn Jones announced he was standing down last week.

Daily Post 28th June 2013 read more »

Proliferation

Last week President Obama raised the hopes of millions worldwide that we will move towards a safer and more sustainable world when he said in Berlin “Peace with justice means pursuing the security of a world without nuclear weapons. This week in a widely hailed speech on ways to combat climate change, he strongly supported nuclear power expansion as one essential option that the US must take. He is wrong on nuclear power, as is the Coalition and Labour Party It is not secure nor ultimately safe, as the nuclear waste problem remains unsolved. Nor is it possible to make it 100% proliferation proof.

David Lowry 28th June 2013 read more »

Nuclear and radioactive materials are still going missing and the information the United Nations atomic agency receives about such incidents may be the tip of the iceberg, said a senior U.N. official. Any loss or theft of highly enriched uranium, plutonium or different types of radioactive sources is potentially serious as al Qaeda-style militants could try to use them to make a crude nuclear device or a so-called dirty bomb, experts say.

Trust 28th June 2013 read more »

Japan

Fukushima Crisis update 25th to 27th June. TEPCO’s water woes heated up this week, as the company admitted that levels of radioactive tritium in samples of ocean water near intakes at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have tripled since June 10, and are the highest ever recorded there as a result of the Fukushima nuclear crisis.

Greenpeace 28th June 2013 read more »

Renewables

Concrete for the foundations at SSE’s Hunterston offshore wind turbine testing facility near Glasgow, Scotland, is slated to be poured next week after a delay due to “variable ground conditions” found at one of three berths at the site. Mitsubishi plans to install its flagship 7MW SeaAngel and Siemens its 6MW SWT-6.0-154 machine at the Hunterston Test Centre for Offshore Wind (HTCOW), which is due to open for business by October this year.

Recharge News 26th June 2013 read more »

In less than a decade ordinary Germans have raised €63bn through people-powered finance to fund their country’s renewables revolution. By embracing renewable energy crowdfunding here, we can replicate this success, meet our energy investment challenge, and make the “Big 60,000” become a reality. In a recent interview for Business Green, Greg Barker, Minister for Energy and Climate Change, described crowdfunding as “an incredibly powerful” funding model with the capacity “to help deliver my ambition for a far more decentralised energy system and achieve the goal of turning the Big Six into the Big 60,000”.

Abundance Generation 28th June 2013 read more »

Microgeneration

This week’s Micro Power News – includes a round up of this week’s Green Deal news.

Microgenscotland 28th June 2013 read more »

Energy Efficiency

Smart meters being fitted in UK homes will make energy use more visible, but it is not clear if technology alone will be enough to reduce energy consumption.

Guardian 28th June 2013 read more »

Fossil Fuels

Letter David Lowry: The Heath Minister Anna Soubry told the Labour MP Paul Flynn in a written answer last month that Public Health England (formerly the Health Protection Agency) “is preparing a report identifying potential public health issues and concerns, including radon (release/emissions) that might be associated with aspects of hydraulic fracturing.” The report is due out for public consultation in the summer. PHE is concerned to evaluate the potential risks of radon gas being pumped into citizens’ homes as part of the shale gas stream. Unless the gas is stored for several days to allow the radon’s radioactivity to naturally reduce, this is potentially very dangerous. Radon is unquestionably the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.

Times 29th June 2013 read more »

With inland gas reserves said to be enough to meet the UK’s needs for 25 years, even the most picturesque of places are being eyed up by prospectors.

Guardian 28th June 2013 read more »

Andrew Simm: So shale gas could meet demand for 40 years. What then? Britain’s new gas capacity is much hyped, but the fracking path will most likely lead to the lights going out regardlessThe alternative for Britain has been clear, yet ignored, since the need to stimulate the economy after the financial crash of 2007-2008. It involves: large-scale investment in a green new deal; a carbon army of green-collar workers to make the nation’s draft buildings energy efficient; the building and maintenance of an efficient, more decentralised and renewably powered energy system; the remaking of our transport system – and more. Obvious efficiency measures such as overnight electric light curfews in city office blocks might help, sending an important signal, and the government could impose a demand reduction obligation on the utilities too. This is not the embarrassing failure of the current small insulation programme dubbed a green deal, but a bold plan for necessary and rapid transition to a modern, more secure and convivial economy. It stands a far better chance of keeping the lights on too.

Guardian 28th June 2013 read more »

Geoffrey Lean: Shale gas and oil may hold the key to Britain’s energy troubles – but not if grassroots protesters have their way. Though ministers have yet to realise it, the growing revolt is looking much more formidable even than opposition to wind farms, which didn’t take off until a long time after turbines began turning. By contrast, the anti-fracking movement is already well on its way, even though significant exploitation isn’t expected until the 2020s. This, it seems safe to say, will be no tea party.

Telegraph 28th June 2013 read more »

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Published: 29 June 2013