News

8 June 2009

British Energy

ROBERT Armour, company secretary at British Energy, will follow chief executive Bill Coley and step down from the nuclear energy company this summer. Armour, who is also general counsel, will leave BE in July following its 12.5 billion takeover by French energy company EDF earlier this year. He said in a statement to Scotland on Sunday that the time had come for a “new challenge” but his departure is thought to be part of a major restructuring of the East Kilbride-based firm in the wake of the EDF deal.

Scotland on Sunday 7th June 2009 more >>

Electricity Demand

Research from Inenco, the UK’s largest energy analyst, shows that power use has been consistently well below 2008 consumption over the last three months, as companies continue to lay off workers and cut production output. Although there have been indications that the UK may be moving out of recession, demand for electricity was still down by an average of 4pc over the last 28 days compared with last year.

Telegraph 7th June 2009 more >>

Low Level Waste

Radiation Free Lakeland has appealed to the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate not to grant final consent to Studsvik UK for their Lillyhall site. A letter has gone to Mike Weightman, Director and HM Chief Inspector, Nuclear Safety Directorate and HM Nuclear Installations Inspectorate.

Get Noticed Online 5th June 2009 more >>

Test Veterans

Fifteen successive governments – Conservative and, to the party’s lasting shame, Labour too – have variously lied to, misled, ignored and betrayed the veterans of Britain’s nuclear tests. Now, at last, the remaining veterans plus widows, sons, daughters and grandchildren left cursed by one of the most abject chapters of post-war history can sense justice in the offing The smiles, tears of relief and the outpouring of sheer elation witnessed on the steps of the High Court on Friday said it all.

Mirror 7th June 2009 more >>

North Korea

The US is considering reinstating North Korea on its list of states viewed as sponsors of terrorism, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said.

BBC 7th June 2009 more >>

The US is moving to impose tougher sanctions on North Korea over the regime’s recent nuclear and missile tests, with Barack Obama warning that Washington would not continue a policy of capitulating in the face of provocative acts. “We are not intending to continue a policy of rewarding provocation,” the US president said on Saturday during a visit to Normandy to commemorate the 65th anniversary of D-Day.

FT 8th June 2009 more >>

Iran

Hillary Clinton refused yesterday to rule out a pre-emptive Israeli military strike on Iran. It was the first time that a senior member of the Obama Administration had openly discussed such a possibility. The US Secretary Of State, speaking a few days before elections in Iran that will determine the fate of President Ahmadinejad, also warned that the country would face retaliation if it launched a nuclear attack on Israel.

Times 8th June 2009 more >>

Posted: 8 June 2009

7 June 2009

Test Veterans

After all their years of campaigning for justice, Britain’s nuclear test veterans had just been handed their first breakthrough victory.

Mirror 6th June 2009 more >>

Iran

IRAN now has enough nuclear material to make its first atomic bomb, it was claimed last night. The Islamic republic, whose president has threatened to “wipe Israel off the face of the Earth”, has nearly doubled stockpiles of enriched uranium in the last six months, the United Nations said yesterday.

Scotland on Sunday 7th June 2009 more >>

Renewables

Offshore energy projects around Scotland’s coast risk being strangled at birth unless the Scottish and UK governments invest £2.5 billion to £5 billion in an offshore energy grid, according to one of the sector’s leading executives.

Sunday Times 7th June 2009 more >>

A CONSORTIUM of Scottish housing associations is preparing to make a move into the renewable energy market. Four social housing groups, in Fife, Berwickshire, Falkirk and Argyll and Bute, are poised to submit planning applications for community wind farms, which they hope will reduce fuel poverty in Scotland.

Scotland On Sunday 7th June 2009 more >>

Posted: 7 June 2009

6 June 2009

New Nukes

“A Nuclear Power Renaissance? Maybe Not.” – New Book Analyses Role of Nuclear Energy in 31 Countries. Launch 8 June 2009 at 11h00, Chatham House, (Royal Institute of International Affairs), Astor Room, 10 St James’s Square. What is the current role of nuclear power in the world and what are the trends? Thirty international energy experts have analysed the situation in 31 countries. They conclude, quite contrary to the general impression, which nuclear energy is rather in the dusk than in the dawn. In 2008, for the first time since the beginning of the civil use of nuclear energy, no new reactor has started operating in the world and the installed capacity declined. In most countries the outlook for nuclear energy is uncertain. Edited by Lutz Mez, Managing Director of the Environmental Policy Research Centre at the Freie University, Berlin, Germany, Mycle Schneider, Independent International Energy and Nuclear Policy Consultant, Paris, France, Steve Thomas, Professor for Energy Policy at the Public Services International Research Unit of the University of Greenwich, UK. The event will be chaired by Walt Patterson, Associate Fellow, Energy, Environment and Development Programme, Chatham House. Contact: afroggatt@chathamhouse.org.uk

The U.K.’s plans to build four new nuclear power stations is on schedule and is unlikely to be derailed by public fears, according to Graham Fagence, business development manager of Hitachi Power Europe. He said the impending energy crunch facing the U.K. in 2016 will keep current plans to get the first of four nuclear plants operational by 2018 on track.

Industrial Info 5th June 2009 more >>

Companies

Vatenfall is pulling out of the race to build new reactors in the UK for at least 12 to 18 months because of the recession.

Contract Journal 5th June 2009 more >>

Clean Development Mechanism

For the first time in eight years, countries are contemplating giving nuclear stations carbon credits in the run-up to the crucial world summit on climate change in Copenhagen in December. This could greatly boost prospects of a global nuclear expansion. Draft text currently under negotiation at climate change talks by 182 countries in Bonn, Germany, includes an option to make nuclear facilities eligible for funding from 2012 under two schemes meant to help poorer countries develop low-carbon technologies: the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation. Nuclear power was excluded from these schemes under the Kyoto protocol in 2001, after opposition from European and developing countries. Now the nuclear industry is hoping to overturn that, and open the door for funding to flow to nuclear stations across the developing world. “it’s a survival strategy for the nuclear industry not the planet”, according to Shaun Burnie, a nuclear energy consultant and former Greenpeace campaigner: He estimates that carbon credits could cut the capital cost of building new nuclear stations by up to 40%.

New Scientist 5th June 2009 more >>

Nuclear Research

A new nuclear research centre is to be built near Whitehaven. The Dalton Cumbria Facility, funded by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and the Dalton Institute of the University of Manchester, is planned for the Westlakes Science and Technology Park. The centre will create a dedicated research facility for radiation science and decommission engineering. The applicants, Energus, said that the centre will provide ongoing research and development study in key areas that will support the broader nuclear and energy agenda of west Cumbria.

Business Gazette 5th June 2009 more >>

Test Veterans

More than 1,000 atom bomb test veterans could receive compensation following a victory at the High Court.

Lincolnshire Echo 6th June 2009 more >>

Daily Mail 6th June 2009 more >>

Independent 6th June 2009 more >>

Times 6th June 2009 more >>

Telegraph 5th June 2009 more >>

Guardian 5th June 2009 more >>

BBC 5th June 2009 more >>

Faslane

SCOTLAND’S biggest naval base has been hit by a swine flu alert after two sailors and a civilian fell ill Faslane – home of the UK’s nuclear submarines – yesterday confirmed they had three suspected victims of the virus.

Daily Record 6th June 2009 more >>

Disarmament

Russia on Friday played down hopes of a breakthrough on reducing nuclear arsenals ahead of a visit to Moscow by the U.S. President, linking arms cuts with U.S. plans to deploy an anti-missile system in Europe.

Yahoo 5th June 2009 more >>

Spain

Spain’s nuclear regulator CSN on Friday recommended that the Garona plant may renew its operating permit for another 10 years on safety grounds, newspaper online reports said. The government has the final say and must decide by July 5. Permits to operate another six of Spain’s eight nuclear plants are up for renewal in the next two years, or within the mandate of a government that has vowed to phase them out. Here are some key facts about Spain’s eight nuclear power stations.

Yahoo 5th June 2009 more >>

Interactive Investor 5th June 2009 more >>

China

The first component modules for the Sanmen AP1000s have been completed in China. The manufacturing company has just received the N-Stamp accreditation for its nuclear-grade steelwork.

World Nuclear News 5th June 2009 more >>

China hopes to start building the next phase of its Sanmen nuclear plant by the end of 2011, the head of the project company said on Thursday. Sanmen in Zhejiang province, near Shanghai, is one of two sites in China where Westinghouse, a unit of Toshiba Corp, and the Shaw Group are building the first of their AP1000 reactors, so-called “third generation” nuclear plants. The firms have started building the first phase — two of a total planned six AP1000 reactors — and expect it to start operating in 2013.

Guardian 4th June 2009 more >>

Posted: 6 June 2009

5 June 2009

British Energy

When EDF British Energy for £12.5 billion, it agreed to pay, in cash, British Energy’s shareholders 774p for each of their shares – way in excess of the market value. Intriguingly, they shareholders an alternative: 700p in cash plus a “contingent value right”. This contingent value right would be turned into a tradeable security, a Nuclear Power Note that would pay a dividend every year over a 10-year period calculated on a mixture of the annual output of British Energy’s reactors and the prevailing annualised price of electricity. If British Energy’s performance continued to be as poor as it had been in 2008 and power prices over the long term fell and stayed low, then potentially these Nuclear Power Notes would not pay out a penny. They’d be worthless. Multiple failures at Hunterston, Heysham and Hartlepool meant more than a quarter of the UK nuclear fleet was out of action in 2008 when British Energy produced its worst-ever output of 40 terawatt hours. However, the current performance indicates the fleet could produce around 55 TWh in 2009.

Evening Standard 4th June 2009 more >>

Eon

Paul Golby, Chief Executive, E.ON UK, discusses the status of E.ON’s UK joint venture with RWE npower; his optimism that there would be a “progressive reduction in licensing risk over the two remaining stages” of the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate’s generic design assessment (GDA) process; and provides details of the grid investment necessary should E.ON build at all of its current sites.

Platts 4th June 2009 more >>

Labour Policy

Joan Ruddock: Labour’s commitment to the trinity of energy sources, clean fossil fuels, nuclear and renewables, means we can be serious not only about decarbonising the energy supply of the UK without the lights going out, but also the UK can have the edge when it comes to developing green manufacturing and jobs.

Guardian 3rd June 2009 more >>

Letter from Colin Challen MP: Boldness, for me, would mean recalling parliament in September to hear an early Queen’s Speech with the following commitments: to legislate for proportional representation in time for the next general election; to repeal ID cards legislation (I was wrong to support it); to introduce a strategic defence review predicated on dropping Trident; to re-energise Labour’s traditional internationalist stance; to abandon new nuclear power and to commence a green industrial strategy.

Guardian 5th June 2009 more >>

Chapelcross

A £4,000 boost has been given to children’s sports in Annandale and Eskdale by Magnox North Chapelcross.

Dumfries Standard 3rd June 2009 more >>

Companies

A ROBOTICS company will double the size of its headquarters and invest in a £250,000 groundbreaking test facility as it prepares to step up its presence in the nuclear energy market.

NEBusiness 4th June 2009 more >>

Dounreay

An area of seabed equivalent in size to more than 10 football pitches is to be monitored over the summer during the next phase of implementation of Dounreay’s particle recovery programme.

Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd 4th June 2009 more >>

Herald 5th June 2009 more >>

Scotsman 5th June 2009 more >>

Test Veterans

Around 1,000 servicemen who blame their ill-health on involvement in Britain’s 1950s nuclear tests will learn today whether they can sue the MoD for compensation.

London Evening Standard 5th June 2009 more >>

BBC 5th June 2009 more >>

Charles Donald Albury, co-pilot of the plane that dropped the atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, has died after years of congestive heart failure, aged 88.

Telegraph 5th June 2009 more >>

China

A consortium of Westinghouse Electric Company, LLC (Westinghouse) and the Shaw Group Inc. (Shaw Group), is planning to commence construction of the next phase of its Sanmen nuclear plant by the end of 2011. Both the companies are together building the first of their AP1000 reactors in Sanmen in Zhejiang province, near Shanghai. The firms have started building the first phase, two of a total planned six AP1000 reactors, and expect it to start operating in 2013.

Energy Business Review 4th June 2009 more >>

A government official says China must have installed 100 GW of wind power by 2020 to balance projected reliance on coal. That would be more than triple the wind target until now and more than double the capacity being planned for nuclear generation.

Windpower Monthly June 2009 more >>

Iran

President Barack Obama has called for a new beginning in US relations with the Muslim world in a keynote speech in Egypt. On the Iranian nuclear issue, Mr Obama said: “No single nation should pick and choose which nations hold nuclear weapons” and said Iran had the right to peaceful nuclear power.

BBC 4th June 2009 more >>

Japan

Japan’s power industry group has asked member companies to rethink their plans for plutonium-thermal power generation because they are unlikely to meet their current targets for adopting the technique. The plan was for 16-18 reactors to use MOX by March 2011, but only three are ready.

Japan Times 5th June 2009 more >>

US

U.S. lawmakers on Thursday sought to increase incentives for nuclear power and energy efficiency in a measure that would require utilities to generate a certain amount of electricity from renewable sources. Nuclear power is not currently considered a renewable electricity source in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee bill. Under the bill, a percentage of utilities’ total power production would have to be dedicated to renewables.

Interactive Investor 4th June 2009 more >>

UAE

The United Arab Emirates will likely award a contract for the construction of two nuclear reactors in the second half of 2009, a senior executive at French oil major Total said on Thursday.

Yahoo 4th June 2009 more >>

North Korea

On 25 May North Korea conducted a successful test of a plutonium-based nuclear weapon. Since the detection of the blast – similar in force to that of the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki – the question of how to read this action, and how best to respond, has reverberated through the media and the halls of power.

New Statesman 4th June 2009 more >>

Open Democracy 4th June 2009 more >>

Posted: 5 June 2009

4 June 2009

THORP

THORP will shut for up to seven months, but Sellafield bosses say it is not being forced to close. From next month, the key reprocessing plant is going into “a planned engineering and maintenance” shutdown which will have no impact on the 1,500 workforce. But during the shutdown special attention will be given to Evaporator C which processes the Thorp fuel. Operators Sellafield Ltd said this had nothing to do with the recent failure of Evaporator B which raised a threat to Thorp operations. Yesterday, management criticised Cumbrian anti-nuclear group Core for giving the impression the shutdown was enforced only hours after spokesman Martin Forwood was given the opportunity to discuss issues with them.

Whitehaven News 3rd June 2009 more >>

Sellafield

SELLAFIELD clocked up a major milestone this week with the production of the 5000th container of high level solid waste into glass blocks. The conversion is carried out in the vitrification plant so that the waste can be stored safely and more suitably for eventual transport and storage. Vitrification also reduces the volume of liquid waste to one third of its original volume and the 5000th container also marks another milestone – 40,000 tonnes of uranium reprocessed through both the Thorp and the Magnox plants combined.

Whitehaven News 3rd June 2009 more >>

THE new Bishop of Carlisle has given his blessing to the nuclear industry and welcomes the prospect of expansion at Sellafield bringing new investment to the area.

Whitehaven News 3rd June 2009 more >>

Low Level Waste

PLANS to allow drilling which could pave the way for a low-level radioactive waste site at Keekle Head have been backed by Copeland councillors.

Whitehaven News 3rd June 2009 more >>

Sweden

The eastern Swedish town of sthammar has seen off rival bidder Oskarshamn and secured a lucrative deal to store nuclear waste for the next 100,000 years, the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company (SKB) said in a statement on Wednesday. The sthammar site is located near the Forsmark nuclear facility and was chosen in part because rock at the level where the spent nuclear fuel will be stored is dry and relatively free of fractures.

The Local 3rd June 2009 more >>

World Nuclear News 3rd June 2009 more >>

US

Sensitive, but not classified, information on U.S. nuclear sites was posted to the Government Printing Office Web site. The information, now removed, included maps of locations of stockpiles of fuel for nuclear weapons.

eWeek 3rd June 2009 more >>

Guardian 3rd June 2009 more >>

BBC 3rd June 2009 more >>

North Korea

The families of two American journalists accused of illegally entering North Korea say they have now been held in solitary confinement for more than two months and are “very, very scared” about their trial, which begins in Pyongyang this morning.

Independent 4th June 2009 more >>

Iran

French President Nicolas Sarkozy warned Iran Wednesday that it risked deepening its international isolation if it did not agree to talks with the world’s biggest powers on Tehran’s nuclear program.

Reuters 3rd June 2009 more >>

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has said his country is not planning unilateral military action to disable Iran’s nuclear programme.

BBC 3rd June 2009 more >>

Renewables

Green energy overtook fossil fuels in attracting investment for power generation for the first time last year, according to figures released today by the United Nations. Wind, solar and other clean technologies attracted $140bn (85bn) compared with $110bn for gas and coal for electrical power generation, with more than a third of the green cash destined for Britain and the rest of Europe.

Guardian 4th June 2009 more >>

Posted: 4 June 2009

3 June 2009

THORP

Despite strenuous denials by Sellafield managers last week in local newspapers that THORP was facing closure, it has now been confirmed that the plant will indeed be closed down shortly for a period of some seven months. Details of plant’s imminent shut-down were given to CORE in a meeting with the NDA, Sellafield Ltd and Nuclear Management Partners (NMP) on 2nd June when it was revealed that Evaporator C, the only site Evaporator configured for THORP use, was shortly to be taken out of service for an in-depth engineering investigation to assess its remnant operational life.

CORE 2nd June 2009 more >>

Sellafield

Nuclear Management Partners has a brief to clean up Sellafield. With a budget of £1.3bn each year the bob should have a long half-life.

Contract Journal 2nd June 2009 more >>

Companies

Swedish electricity major Vattenfall has decided to delay its plan to participate in the UK new-build nuclear program citing the current economic recession and market situation. The Swedish power company has said that it will put on hold any decision to partake in the nuclear build program by 12-18 months. Vattenfall has said that it will retain its interests in the UK energy market and will watch out for developments in the country’s new-build nuclear program. The company also said that plans to develop its UK wind portfolio will not be affected by its decision.

Energy Central 2nd June 2009 more >>

World Nuclear News 2nd June 2009 more >>

New Nukes

Economist Jeffrey Sachs said carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology and nuclear energy will be necessary to avoid catastrophic climate change, comments made as part of a presentation at the Asia Society in New York Monday night.

Guardian 2nd Jan 2009 more >>

Wylfa

NUCLEAR inspectors ordered improvements to fire precautions at an ageing power station just weeks before a blaze broke out, the Daily Post has learned. Firefighters were called to Wylfa power station in the early hours of May 18 after lagging on a pipe connected to a turbine caught fire causing a nuclear reactor to be shut down as a precautionary measure.

Daily Post 2nd June 2009 more >>

Consider the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate, busy grappling with an ageing staff, a heavy workload courtesy of the Sellafield decommissioning programme and the demands of the pre-licensing regime cranked into life now us Brits have decided we like nuclear power after all. Just imagine, you are juggling all that when you receive a letter from the Celtic League. It has got a tad uppity about a recent fire at the UK’s most modern, but actually fairly clapped-out, Magnox station, at Wylfa in north Wales.

Utility Week 5th June 2009 more >>

Sizewell

A rallying cry was sounded last night for businesses in the east of England to seize their share of the multi-million pound investment bonanza which will be created by a new power station. EDF Energy announced earlier this year that Sizewell will be home to one of its four new nuclear power stations, which could create up to 5,000 jobs in the area. The existing facility, Sizewell B, already employs 700 full-time staff and puts £30m into the local economy through wages alone. Now industry representatives are urging local companies to grasp the opportunities which will be created through new employment at the power station and indirect jobs at suppliers and contractors. Waveney MP Bob Blizzard said that the east of England needs to embrace the chance to become the hub of the UK’s energy industry, with research into renewables as well the new nuclear power station.

The Lowestoft Journal 3rd June 2009 more >>

East Anglian Daily Press 3rd June 2009 more >>

Europe

The European Nuclear Energy Forum (Enef) was set up to bring together the nuclear power industry and green groups to encourage “an open debate without taboos” about the future of nuclear power. Fat chance. The industry will now have to talk to itself because Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace and Sortir du Nucl aire, the only groups invited into the industry-dominated body, have walked out, accusing Enef of stifling critical voices, ignoring their concerns and riding roughshod over alternative scientific evidence. A case of Enef’s enough.

Guardian 2nd June 2009 more >>

Sweden

At the Aespoe Hard Rock Laboratory in the southeastern Swedish town of Oskarshamn, researchers are using an underground maze of four kilometres (2.5 miles) of tunnels to test methods to enable Sweden to become the first country in the world to bury spent nuclear fuel for hundreds of thousands of years. The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company (SKB), an independent company owned by nuclear power plant operators, is due to select a site sometime in June for its final repository for high-level spent nuclear fuel from Sweden’s 10 reactors.

Yahoo 2nd June 2009 more >>

Yahoo 2nd June 2009 more >>

Two towns in eastern Sweden are competing to be the first in the world to store nuclear waste for hundreds of thousands of years. Once SKB has chosen its site it will submit two applications to Swedish environmental and nuclear authorities. If both give the thumbs up, the government will then take a decision, probably around 2014.

The Local 2nd June 2009 more >>

Iran

Barack Obama said today that the US should be able to measure whether Iran is serious about nuclear negotiations by the end of this year. The US president told the BBC that he did not want to put artificial timetables on the talks with Iran, but he did confirm that the diplomatic approach would be reviewed by December.

Guardian 3rd June 2009 more >>

President Nicolas Sarkozy will on Wednesday meet Iran’s foreign minister in Paris in a move aimed at paving the way to a resumption of dialogue between six world powers and Tehran over its nuclear ambitions.

FT 3rd June 2009 more >>

Reuters 2nd June 2009 more >>

Japan

Tokyo Electric Power Company, Inc. (TEPCO) has received approval from Japan’s trade ministry to increase the output from 75% to 100% at the 1,356-megawatt No.7 nuclear reactor at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant in northern Japan as part of a test run. TEPCO has restarted the unit on May 9, 2009 for the first time since the nuclear plant was forced to shut nearly two years ago following a major earthquake, and has been gradually increasing power generation from the unit since.

Energy Business Review 1st June 2009 more >>

China

China’s nuclear power generation is estimated to reach around 5% of the country’s total power output by 2020, according to National Energy Administration (NEA). The target is superior to the original one set in 2007, which targeted for a nuclear power capacity of 40 million kilowatt (kW) by 2020, taking up 4% of the total power capacity.

Energy Business Review 1st June 2009 more >>

US

The five environmental groups who are against the relicensing of Exelon Corporation’s Oyster Creek nuclear power plant are appealing the decision in federal court. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) renewed the plant’s operating license in April 2009 for additional 20 years.

Energy Business Review 1st June 2009 more >>

Oman

Russia and Oman have signed an agreement on nuclear energy cooperation that could see the two countries building reactors and conducting research together, Russia’s atomic agency said on Tuesday.

Middle East Online 2nd June 2009 more >>

Coal

New coal-fired power stations such as Kingsnorth should be approved only if fitted with a mechanism to recover waste heat for its reuse in buildings nearby, says the Institution of Civil Engineers. The move would reduce the UK’s heavy reliance on gas for heating, which accounts for half the energy consumed.

FT 3rd June 2009 more >>

Posted: 3 June 2009

2 June 2009

Oldbury

NDA’s Oldbury Power Station is celebrating its return to generating electricity at ‘full-power’ after exactly five years of reduced output. Oldbury’s Reactor 2 returned from its statutory maintenance outage on 22 May 2009 and was synchronised with the national grid – five years to-the-day since the last time both Oldbury’s reactors operated together. Reactor 1 has been at power since 14 March 2009. Oldbury was originally scheduled to cease generation in December 2008, but has since received the go-ahead to continue generating.

NDA 1st June 2009 more >>

Gazette 1st June 2009 more >>

National Nuclear Lab

Richard Maudslay has been named as the new chairman of the UK national nuclear lab (NNL).

Nuclear Engineering International 1st June 2009 more >>

Torness

British Energy’s BGY.L Torness 2 nuclear unit was back in service early on Monday after planned maintenance closure since early April, data from the National Grid showed.

Reuters 1st June 2009 more >>

Conservative Policy

David Cameron has improved on his predecessors’ policies. He has adopted the Green party policy of a “smart grid”. He has workable policies for incentivising small-scale renewables. But the unequivocal positives end about there. He’s courting voters by rejecting Heathrow’s third runway, but he won’t stop giving the aviation industry the multibillion pound tax breaks that drive its growth. There is the same old enthusiasm for nuclear power and a good deal of excitement about carbon capture. Ironically, David Cameron talks about liberating Britain from oil dependency and from the vulnerability of potential energy price fluctuations, but the bulk of his energy plans involve making us dependent on imported coal and uranium.

Guardian 1st June 2009 more >>

Azerbaijan

Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister Vyacheslav Sinyugin said that Russia is ready to take part in the construction of nuclear power plant in Azerbaijan. Sinyugin stressed, the country is ready to give Azerbaijan its proposals and ideas on the construction of nuclear power plant. Azerbaijan had planned to build a nuclear power plant back in the 1980s. It was to be built near the Navagi settlement 100 kilometers south of Baku.

Energy Business Review 31st May 2009 more >>

China

The current slowdown might result in a boost for Chinese nuclear energy. Ambitious targets could be raised further, while current build rates appear to make the new goals achievable.

World Nuclear News 1st June 2009 more >>

Gas

Russia has urged the international community to bail out Ukraine and help it pay its gas bill amid growing fears that another gas war could disrupt supplies to the EU. Ukraine has been severely battered by the economic crisis.

Guardian 2nd June 2009 more >>

Posted: 2 June 2009

1 June 2009

New Nukes

Ministers’ drive towards a new generation of nuclear power plants received a blow last week after the head of UK’s biggest nuclear generator warned that new power stations would not be built without government financial support.

Regeneration & Renewal 1st June 2009 more >>

There is the challenge of cutting UK emissions of carbon dioxide by more than a third by 2020, something that Mr Miliband wants to achieve by replacing Britain’s fleet of dirty, fossil-fuel-fired power stations, which generate 76 per cent of the country’s electricity, with low-carbon power new nuclear reactors, “clean coal” plants and wind turbines, in sufficient numbers and with all the infrastructure needed to support them. Many industry experts raise their eyebrows at such an ambition, but Mr Miliband insists that it is possible.

Times 1st June 2009 more >>

Britain is set to turn its back on a wholly liberalised energy market and will return to a more interventionist, state-directed model, according to Ed Miliband, the Energy Secretary. In an interview with The Times, Mr Miliband said that a more assertive role for government was the only way that Britain could achieve its present target of slashing its carbon emissions by 34 per cent by 2020 and 80 per cent by 2050. Mr Miliband, who is pushing for a big rise in electricity generated from low-carbon sources, said that this summer the Government would set out a clear framework for Britain’s future energy mix specifying future targets for total power generation from nuclear, gas, “clean coal” and renewables for the first time since the 1980s. The so-called Summer Strategy, dubbed the “2030 Masterplan” by senior industry executives, will also provide a long-term framework for the development of the National Grid, which is facing a big overhaul in order to support a huge increase in offshore wind power in the UK, as well as a fleet of new nuclear reactors.

Times 1st June 2009 more >>

North Korea

Satellite images of North Korea have revealed the luxury lifestyle of dictator Kim Jong Il and his inner circle, replete with palaces, golf courses and swimming pools with giant waterslides, while North Koreans starve to death to pay for the nuclear bomb.

Telegraph 31st May 2009 more >>

North Korea has started moving a long-range missile towards a launch pad in possible preparation for another missile test, according to US officials. One told the Financial Times that Pyongyang may be gearing up for “additional activity” just days after it defied the world by conducting a nuclear test.

FT 1st June 2009 more >>

Telegraph 1st June 2009 more >>

Posted: 1 June 2009

31 May 2009

Cumbria

Claims by a west Cumbrian MP that a Tory Government would not back the building of new nuclear reactors could wreck the area’s chance of getting one, according to a Conservative councillor.

Business Gazette 30th May 2009 more >>

Chapelcross

CHAPELCROSS nuclear power plant near Annan is going green. Currently being defuelled and decommissioned after ceasing production five years ago, many non-hazardous waste materials from the site have been recycled and Chapelcross site director Dave Wilson is keen to promote waste awareness. A Chapelcross Green Forum has been relaunched as a voluntary group aiming to make further environmental improvements on site, and more than 80 members of staff have taken part in four waste awareness training workshops held in partnership with Dumfries and Galloway Council.

Dumfries & Galloway Standards 29th May 2009 more >>

Nuclear Electricity

Nuclear power plants provided 2601 billion kWh during 2008. This lowest figure for five years drops its contribution to world electricity supplies to an estimated about 14% a few years ahead of a new wave of nuclear build. The drop from recent years’ 16% share is due in part to the extended shutdown at Japan’s Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant, the largest in the world which accounts for over 2% of global nuclear capacity alone.

World Nuclear News 29th May 2009 more >>

Scotland

Scottish ministers have come under fire for flying in the face of their commitment to climate-friendly renewable energy by cutting off funding for vital research. Although wind, wave and tidal power companies in England and Wales can apply to the government’s Carbon Trust for research grants of up to £500,000, firms based in Scotland cannot. Money has run out because the Scottish government has refused to come up with the cash. The revelation is embarrassing for ministers, who have often proclaimed their ambition to make Scotland “the Saudi Arabia of renewable energy”. And it has provoked scorn from political opponents. “SNP ministers desperately try to look like they’re funding clean technologies, but the money has run out and the commitment’s simply not there,” said Green MSP Patrick Harvie.

Sunday Herald 31st May 2009 more >>

US

The Republicans want 100 new reactors as Areva admits the cost of a new reactor will be $8bn – double the price offered to Finland.

Climate Progress 30th May 2009 more >>

In a devastating pair of financial reports that might be called “The Emperor Has No Pressure Vessel,” the New York Times has blazed new light on the catastrophic economics of atomic power. The two Business Section specials cover the fiasco of new French construction at Okiluoto, Finland, and the virtual collapse of Atomic Energy of Canada. In a sane world they could comprise an epitaph for the “Peaceful Atom”. But they come simultaneous with Republican demands for up to $700 billion or more in new reactor construction. The Times’ “In Finland, Nuclear Renaissance Runs Into Trouble” by James Kanter is a “cautionary tale” about the “most powerful reactor ever built” whose modular design “was supposed to make it faster and cheaper to build” as well as safer to operate.

Huffington Post 31st May 2009 more >>

North Korea

America has warned it “will not accept” a nuclear-armed North Korea as new intelligence data showed that the secretive state was preparing a fresh missile launch, which could take place in two weeks’ time. The fresh developments increased the tension yet further yesterday in a game of diplomatic brinkmanship that seems destined to put Washington and Pyongyang on a collision course.

Observer 31st May 2009 more >>

Scotland on Sunday 31st May 2009 more >>

A British military aircraft is on its way to North Korea to aid investigations in to the strength of this week’s nuclear bomb test. The underground blast which took place on Monday has received worldwide criticism and increased international tensions with the communist country, with America confirming it would act quickly if a military threat was posed.

Times 30th May 2009 more >>

Posted: 31 May 2009

30 May 2009

New Nukes

Stephen Tindale: Everyone should support the building of new nuclear power stations, to help tackle climate change. We must stop arguing about whether energy efficiency, renewables, carbon capture and storage or nuclear are ‘better’ to cut carbon emissions. We need all of them.

Nuclear Engineering International 29th May 2009 more >>

Phil Radford talks to Bibi van der Zee about becoming the new executive director of Greenpeace USA. He says nuclear reactors are sitting ducks for terrorists.

Guardian 29th May 2009 more >>

Nuclear contracts – what form will they take?

Contract Journal 29th May 2009 more >>

Copeland MP Jamie Reed has invited Tory leader David Cameron to West Cumbria to debate his policies – starting with the nuclear issue. Mr Cameron, who is visiting Cumbria today, has repeatedly refused to back more new nuclear build and in interviews with the News & Star said the energy source was a “last resort.”

Carlisle News and Star 29th May 2009 more >>

Europe

Today, environmental organisations Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and Sortir du nucl aire formally ended their participation in the European Nuclear Energy Forum (ENEF) at a meeting in Prague hosted by the Czech and Slovak governments and backed by the European Commission. The environmental groups accuse the nuclear industry-dominated body of stifling critical voices and ignoring the concerns of civil society.

FoE Press Release 29th May 2009 more >>

Wylfa

Fires within the confines of a nuclear power plant should not be described as `minor’ the Celtic League have told the United Kingdom Nuclear Safety Directorate. The League were querying the circumstances surrounding a fire a week ago at the Wylfa nuclear power station on Anglesey during which a nuclear reactor was shut down.

Agence Bretagne 29th May 2009 more >>

Bradwell

Anti-nuclear campaigners have expressed alarm at the possibility of three new stations at Bradwell. The Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG) spoke out after Spanish energy company Iberdrola announced that a site had been proposed to them for the development of new nuclear reactors.

Essex County Standard 29th May 2009 more >>

Hinkley

COFFERS at West Somerset Council are set to take a £15,000 hit just because the council has to process a £6.5m business rates refund to Hinkley Point B. The power station is owed the money because it has been generating less electricity than expected and is entitled to a refund of £6,564,000, dating back to September 2006.

This is the West Country 29th May 2009 more >>

SEDGEMOOR District Council has defended its decision to donate a chunk of public land by Bridgwater College for a new nuclear training centre. During a private part of a council meeting this month, councillors agreed to give the college the land so it can press ahead with its new energy skills centre. Anti-nuclear group Stop Hinkley claimed the land was worth around £100,000 and hit out at the decision to pass it on. Stop Hinkley spokesman Jim Duffy said: “This land is owned by council taxpayers who should be consulted if the council wants to give it away for nothing.

This is the West Country 29th May 2009 more >>

Radhealth

Fifty years ago, on 28 May 1959, the World Health Organisation’s assembly voted into force an obscure but important agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency – the United Nations “Atoms for Peace” organisation, founded just two years before in 1957. The effect of this agreement has been to give the IAEA an effective veto on any actions by the WHO that relate in any way to nuclear power – and so prevent the WHO from playing its proper role in investigating and warning of the dangers of nuclear radiation on human health.

Guardian 28th May 2009 more >>

National Nuclear Laboratory

A former Rolls-Royce director has been appointed as chairman for the National Nuclear Laboratory. Richard Maudslay began the three-year role on 18 May, taking over from acting chairman Richard Ramsay. The National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) has been owned by the UK government since April 2009, following the winding down of British Nuclear Fuels.

New Energy Focus 29th May 2009 more >>

US

Is the nuclear renaissance fizzling? Nuclear power may be making a comeback, but long-standing problems with the technology still could lead to canceled orders and renewed public opposition. One problem is what to do with the highly dangerous waste produced by reactors. Currently waste is stored above ground in pools of water or in vast dry casks, but neither of those methods is regarded as adequate over the long term.

New York Times 29th May 2009 more >>

North Korea

Letter from David Lowry: North Korea’s actions are certainly against the progressive security norms being promoted by the President, but such a test, although abhorrent, is not illegal, nor did North Korea illegally leave the NPT, as under treaty Article X this is permitted.

Times 29th May 2009 more >>

The United States will not accept a nuclear-armed North Korea, the US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has said. In a speech to an Asian defence conference in Singapore, Mr Gates also said the threat from North Korea, which this week detonated a nuclear device and launched a series of missiles, could trigger an arms race in Asia.

ITN 30th May 2009 more >>

Interactive Investor 30th May 2009 more >>

BBC 30th May 2009 more >>

Listeners to a national radio station were shocked to learn that the normally peaceful county of North Yorkshire had launched a programme of illegal underground nuclear tests. A newsreader made the comical error at the start of a news bulletin on Radio Five Live.

Yorkshire Post 29th May 2009 more >>

North Korea test-fired another missile yesterday and warned it would act in ‘self-defence’ if provoked by the UN Security Council. The UN is considering tough sanctions over the communist country’s nuclear test on Monday. But the North Korean government warned: ‘Any hostile act against our peaceful vessels, including search and seizure, will be considered an unpardonable infringement on our sovereignty.

Daily Mail 30th May 2009 more >>

China provides as much as 90% of the North’s energy and 40% of its food. Like Russia, it has used its security council veto against attempts to isolate Pyongyang. Without its support, its poor neighbour would struggle to survive. But now it appears that the North may be exhausting Beijing’s patience. This week’s nuclear and missile tests, last month’s rocket launch, increasing threats and the suspected restarting of the Yongbyon nuclear plant have reignited debate about how best to deal with a troublesome neighbour.

Guardian 30th May 2009 more >>

Czech Republic & Slovakia

Slovakia and the Czech Republic signed agreements on Friday to build a nuclear reactor in Slovakia at an estimated cost of 4-6 billion euros ($5.6-$8.4 billion) to increase the country’s energy independence.

Yahoo 29th May 2009 more >>

Belarus

Belarus has asked Russia for $9 billion loan for the construction of a nuclear power plant, Russian finance minister, Alexei Leonidovich Kudrin said. Rosatom State Nuclear Energy Corporation said that Belarus and Russia would sign an agreement to construct the nuclear plant in the third quarter of 2009. Kudrin reported that Belarus had turned down a new loan tranche from Russia worth $500 million, insisting that it be denominated in dollars rather than Russian rubles.

Energy Business Review 28th May 2009 more >>

India

Westinghouse Electric Company, LLC (Westinghouse) will start discussions with Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) with an objective to reach agreement on the deployment of Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power plants in India.

Energy Business Review 28th May 2009 more >>

China

AREVA S.A. (AREVA) is expected to commence work on Taishan nuclear power plant in August 2009. The plant which is located in the southern province of Guangdong, China, is being built with third generation technology. The first reactor is planned to be completed by 2013 and the second is expected to be finished in mid-2014.

Energy Business Review 28th May 2009 more >>

Coal

SCOTLAND is leading the way towards a new energy era in which power stations are fitted with groundbreaking technology to capture greenhouse gas emissions, it was claimed yesterday. The switch-on of a 1 million prototype to capture carbon dioxide emissions from Longannet Power Station in Fife was compared yesterday with the hunt for oil in the North Sea. The 1MW prototype unit switched on yesterday at Longannet, Europe’s third-largest coal-fired power station, is a small-scale replica of a full-sized carbon capture plant. However, it only captures before releasing it again rather than storing it and is tiny compared with the technology needed for the full 2,300MW plant. ScottishPower hopes the test unit will help experts move towards building a 330MW demonstration plant at Longannet, which would incorporate capture of , transportation to the North Sea and storage in disused gas plants or “saline aquifers” gaps in the rocks in the seabed.

Scotsman 30th May 2009 more >>

Posted: 30 May 2009