Britain is coming under increasing pressure to provide Ukraine with an extra €50m (£43m) to construct a new contamination shield over the top of the stricken Chernobyl nuclear plant before the old one collapses. Officials from the European commission said governments around the world were being urged to find €750m to help build a more sophisticated roof over the burnt-out reactor and storage for 200 tonnes of highly radioactive fuel. Jean-Paul Joulia, from the commission’s nuclear safety unit, admitted the cost of just this aspect of the Chernobyl clean-up was running at €1.5bn – double the original estimate – partly due to “some delays” to some projects. But he said he was confident that foreign governments would stump up the money needed for the shield, even in today’s financially difficult climate. “I am optimistic the international community is committed to this. It is important for a number of reasons,” he said.
Guardian 28th Feb 2011 more >>
A multidisciplinary consortium of engineers from UK universities Leeds, Manchester, Nottingham, Salford, Sussex and Huddersfield is looking at ways to forecast the life of nuclear reactors and design materials for a new generation of power stations.
Modern Power Systens 27th Feb 2011 more >>
David Cameron, the Prime Minister, and William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, are understood to be unhappy about the Defence Secretary’s hawkish statements on Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. Sources said Mr Cameron was worried that high-profile warnings about the Iranian nuclear programme could strengthen the domestic position of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s regime by lending it credibility. Mr Cameron is understood to have asked officials to create a new strategy for statements on Iran, which will be seen as a rebuke to Dr Fox, the Government’s most vocal critic of the country. Dr Fox told MPs at the end of last month that the West should plan on the basis that Tehran’s weapons programme could be viable as soon as next year.
Telegraph 28th Feb 2011 more >>
Dale Klein, Ph.D., Associate Vice Chancellor for Research at the University of Texas, currently serving as a U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Commissioner and former NRC Chairman pointed out again this week the U.S. has an extremely valuable resource in used nuclear fuel. Klein made his remarks Sunday morning at the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s (AAAS) annual meeting, in Washington, D.C. reminding us that 95 percent of the energy value in a bundle of used nuclear fuel rods remains available to be re-used. That’s 19 times the energy already used over the past 50 years from nuclear power stations. Those power stations have provided about 20% of the electrical power used in the U.S over about 30 years. It’s a huge resource.
Oil Prices 28th Feb 2011 more >>
Engineering and survey work at the site of the planned Akkuyu nuclear power plant on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast will begin next month, the Russian supplier of the plant has said. Saint Petersburg-based AtomEnergoProekt (AEP) reported that it has completed the registration of the contract to carry out engineering and surveying for Turkey’s first nuclear power plant. A team of geologists and engineers is scheduled to leave for Turkey in early March, the company added.
Your Industry News 28th Feb 2011 more >>
VETERANS fighting to be allowed to sue the government after being exposed to nuclear radiation in the 1950s and 1960s are awaiting a key ruling from the Supreme Court. The former servicemen, including around 10 from Dorset, claim they contracted cancer and other rare illnesses after being present during nuclear weapons tests in the Pacific Ocean and Maralinga in South Australia.
Bournemouth Echo 27th Feb 2011 more >>
Global investment in green energy soared by 30 per cent to a record $243bn (£151bn) last year, according to figures released today.
Yet growth is geographically patchy and some key markets are still struggling in the aftermath of the credit crunch, according to consultants Ernst & Young. On the plus side, China is still booming, recording a whopping 64 per cent growth in installed wind capacity last year. But the US, the world’s second largest renewables market, saw just 5.1 gigawatts of wind power installed in 2010, barely half the level of the previous year.
Independent 28th Feb 2011 more >>
One of the most impressive engineering feats of the clean technology revolution is to make its commercial debut off the coast of Invergordon in the Highlands. Buoys measuring 40 metres in length, much of which will be submerged, will be floated this week and will generate electricity from the rise and fall of the waves off northern Scotland, which will be transmitted to the mainland by underwater cable. The buoys have been designed and built by Ocean Power Technologies.
Times 28th Feb 2011 more >>
Scotland’s high-profile bid to lead the world in renewable energy could cost more jobs than it actually creates, according to a highly critical report issued today. Far from leading to the economic bonanza claimed by ministers, the drive for wind, sea and tidal energy projects would suck jobs from other parts of the economy, while creating only a fraction of the jobs anticipated. The economic consultancy Verso Economics, which carries out research in the economic and social impact of policy decisions for the Scottish Government, has compiled what it claims is a comprehensive financial audit of Scotland’s push for renewable energy. Jenny Hogan, director of policy at Scottish Renewables, the green energy trade association, said it was “meaningless” to look at renewables in isolation. “The report completely overlooks the economic impact of climate change and the fact that wind and nuclear have almost identical costs. There is no doubt Scotland’s renewable energy sector is a significant employer and will be even more so in the future,” she said.
Times 28th Feb 2011 more >>