News June 2009

30 June 2009

New Nukes

German utility RWE AG (RWE.XE), which has bid jointly with E.ON AG (EOAN.XE) for sites in the U.K. with a view to building nuclear reactors there, doesn’t expect to make a final investment decision before 2011, a company executive said Monday. The final call on whether to invest in building new nuclear capacity in the U.K. could come in 2011, 2012, “or even later.”

Wall Street Journal 29th June 2009 more >>

Companies

French state-controlled nuclear group Areva’s supervisory board …

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29 June 2009

New Nukes

Letter from David Lowry: Your editorial rightly points out that we still have a chance to control our destinies if we make the right energy choices. E.On chief executive Paul Golby, is pushing for alternative generating options, including nuclear. Ed Miliband, despite being the secretary of state for energy and climate change, did not launch the UK climate projections, but did, on 15 April, launch another document, nominating 11 sites that would welcome new nuclear power plants. But one …

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28 June 2009

UKAEA

Eight civil engineering companies, including Amec and VT Group, are understood to be in the hunt for the small state-owned nuclear power project management and consultancy business that plays a key role in decomissioning old plants. The second round of bidding is expected to take about six weeks now that the number of interested parties has been reduced from the original 20.

Sunday Telegraph 28th June 2009 more >>

Fuel Poverty

The UK is failing to hit a raft of key …

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27 June 2009

Nuclear Safety

The Nuclear Installations Inspectorate is recruiting more than a dozen project managers to speed up its review of new reactor designs – even though they work for the companies hoping to build them. The Guardian has learnt that the government has approached companies including the US groups Bechtel and CH2M Hill, as well as the UK’s Amec, to fill the senior posts. The companies involved are eager to secure lucrative contracts to help build the UK’s first new reactors …

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26 June 2009

New Nukes

Moody’s Investors Service said Thursday it may take a more negative view of power companies looking to build new nuclear-power plants. The credit-ratings firm in a report said companies developing new reactors haven’t taken steps to strengthen their balance sheets ahead of the massive projects. Although federal loan guarantees will provide low-cost financing, they only “modestly” reduce the risk plant developers face. “It has become increasingly likely that the pursuit of new nuclear power projects will lead to some …

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25 June 2009

New Nukes

Nuclear power will be unable to meet unpredictable shortfalls in Britain’s energy needs resulting from increased reliance on renewable energy, a leading energy expert said last week. Coal fired power stations are a much better back up energy source, said principal academic research fellow at the University College London’s Energy Institute Mark Barrett. “Renewable sources of power predominantly wind power can provide the majority of our electricity needs, but if we decarbonise our transport system …

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24 June 2009

Nuclear Costs

Letter from Pete Roche: Steuart Campbell says he doesn’t know where the 9-12p/kWh estimated cost of nuclear electricity comes from. Actually, a report from the Vermont Law School Institute for Energy and the Environment, published just last week, estimated the cost at around 12 to 20 cents per kWh, which works out at 7-12p/kWh. The author, Dr Mark Cooper, says there are numerous options available to meet the need for electricity in a carbon-constrained environment, but nuclear reactors are …

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23 June 2009

Nuclear Safety

Britain’s nuclear power plants have suffered more than 1,750 leaks, breakdowns and safety faults in the seven years to 2008. Secret papers released under the Freedom of Information Act reveal that over half “had the potential to challenge systems”. Contamination hit Sizewell A, Suffolk, Dounreay, Caithness, and the largest, Sellafield, in Cumbria. Chief nuclear inspector Mike Weightman’s report coincides with Sellafield saying it has finally halted a leak lasting 50 years.

Daily Mirror 22nd June 2009 more >>

SNP …

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22 June 2009

New Nukes

The use of nuclear power and/or renewable energy is seen as part of the response to climate change, but climate change may have a negative impact on some of these energy sources, limiting the contribution they can make. Most of the UK’s nuclear plants are on the coast, so as to get access to sea-water for cooling. In future, some of these sites may be inappropriate as locations for new plants, as has been proposed, due to the …

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21 June 2009

Nuclear Accidents

The scale of safety problems inside Britain’s nuclear power stations has been revealed for the first time in a secret report obtained by the Observer that shows more than 1,750 leaks, breakdowns or other “events” over the past seven years. The damning document, written by the government’s chief nuclear inspector, Mike Weightman, and released under the Freedom of Information Act, raises serious questions about the dangers of expanding the industry with a new generation of atomic plants. And it …

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