News

18 July 2007

Japan

The mayor ordered that a nuclear power plant hit by a strong earthquake be shut down Wednesday until its safety could be confirmed after a long list of problems — including radiation leaks, burst pipes and fires — came to light. The malfunctions and a delay in reporting the problems at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant fueled concerns about the safety of Japan’s 55 nuclear reactors, which have suffered a string of accidents and cover-ups.

CNN Europe 18th July 2007 more >>

Reuters 18th July 2007 more >>

Interactive Investor 18th July 2007 more >>

View London 17th July 2007 more >>

BBC 17th July 2007 more >>

New Scientist 17th July 2007 more >>

Water leaked from the world’s largest nuclear plant after a major earthquake here in central Japan Monday was 50 pct more radioactive than initially estimated, the operator of the plant said Wednesday.

Forbes 18th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear power officials in Japan yesterday admitted that the world’s largest nuclear power plant had suffered at least 50 malfunctions, including burst pipes, water leaks and radioactive waste spillage, when it was hit by Monday’s earthquake.

Guardian 18th July 2007 more >>

The Japanese government yesterday ordered the shutdown of the world’s biggest nuclear power station and told all nuclear plantsto double-check their facilities following a powerful earthquake on Monday.

FT 18th July 2007 more >>

A radioactive leak at a major nuclear plant in Japan damaged by an earthquake on Monday was worse than previously thought, the plant’s operators say.

BBC 18th July 2007 more >>

As Japan admits that radioactive material leaked from a nuclear power plant during Monday’s powerful earthquake, the former BBC Tokyo correspondent Jonathan Head looks at why Japan has stuck with nuclear power despite the risks.

BBC 17th July 2007 more >>

Officials in Japan are investigating reports of a new leak at the world’s biggest nuclear plant following Monday’s earthquake.

Channel 4 News 17th July 2007 more >>

ITV News 17th July 2007 more >>

Japan ordered that emergency earthquake checks be carried out on all its nuclear facilities yesterday as experts gave warning that the country’s largest plant may be prone to further radioactive leaks.

Times 18th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

The UN nuclear watchdog said on Wednesday it had verified that North Korea had closed all five of its major nuclear facilities, a milestone in efforts to get the country to give up its nuclear weapons programmes.

FT 18th July 2007 more >>

Interactive Investor 18th July 2007 more >>

Mirror 18th July 2007 more >>

BBC 18th July 2007 more >>

Guardian website 18th July 2007 more >>

Germany

Swedish utility Vattenfall has dismissed the head of its German nuclear operations after a fire at its Kruemmel nuclear plant and a failure at its Brunsbuettel nuclear plant sparked concerns over the company’s management of its nuclear assets and the future of nuclear power generation in Germany as a whole.

Energy Business Review 17th July 2007 more >>

Europe

The European Commission has set up a high level group to improve nuclear safety.

Mathaba 17th July 2007 more >>

New nukes

Letter: I do not see the dire disaster forecast. Fossil fuel may be on the way out, but we can always build nuclear power plants. The alternative is to become the poor relations of countries such as France, China, India, et al, which have no hang-ups about nuclear energy. Faced with that prospect, the nuclear objections will melt like summer snow.

Herald 18th July 2007 more >>

Russia

President Vladimir Putin has signed a plan to build 26 major new nuclear plants, doubling Russia’s energy from nuclear power stations. In addition to this, Russia plans to export more than 60 nuclear plants to other countries over the next 20 years.

Product Reviews 17th July 2007 more >>

Australia

John Howard, the Prime Minister of Australia has said in a speech that his country cannot keep ignoring nuclear power as an option for energy. This particularly applies to Australia as the country has the largest uranium reserves in the world and uranium is the key fuel for nuclear power.

Product Reviews 17th July 2007 more >>

France

Suez said it has signed a five-year agreement with France’s Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) to cooperate in research and development in the nuclear energy sector. Suez said that the partnership, which is renewable for three-year periods, covers research on 4th-generation nuclear reactors, improvement of reactor performance and security, and waste management and decommissioning.

Interactive Investor 17th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 18 July 2007

17 July 2007

Japan

Flames and black smoke poured from the Kashiwazaki nuclear plant, which automatically shut down during the quake. The fire, at an electrical transformer, was put out and there was no release of radioactivity or damage to the reactors.

Edinburgh Evening News 16th July 2007 more >>

Tokyo Electric Power said there were no radiation leaks.

Guardian 17th July 2007 more >>

Water containing a “small amount of radioactive material” leaked from the massive Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant, where a fire caused by the quake sent black smoke pouring into the sky for hours.

ABC News 16th July 2007 more >>

A strong earthquake struck central Japan, killing at least eight people, injuring hundreds and causing a fire and radioactive leak at the world’s biggest nuclear power plant.

Belfast Telegraph 17th July 2007 more >>

Telegraph 17th July 2007 more >>

Scotsman 17th July 2007 more >>

Independent 17th July 2007 more >>

Herald 17th July 2007 more >>

New Scientist 16th July 2007 more >>

Reuters 16th July 2007 more >>

BBC 16th July 2007 more >>

World Nuclear News 16th July 2007 more >>

Times 17th July 2007 more >>

Authorities were investigating a new possible radioactive leak at a nuclear plant hit by an earthquake in northern Japan. Officials said a series of stacked drums containing low-level nuclear waste fell over during Monday’s quake and some of the lids were found open, Kyodo said, citing officials in the city of Kashiwazaki, near the epicenter. Kensuke Takeuchi, a spokesman at the Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear power plant, confirmed that barrels of low-level nuclear waste had tipped over.

Daily Mail 17th July 2007 more >>

BBC 17th July 2007 more >>

Sky News 17th July 2007 more >>

The government here will consider strengthening the resistance of Japan’s nuclear power plants to earthquakes after a powerful tremor caused a radiation leak, Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Akira Amari said Tuesday.

Interactive Investor 17th July 2007 more >>

“This fire and radioactive leakage reminds us yet again of the serious threats posed by nuclear power. There is a real risk in Japan, and globally, of larger earthquakes and other natural disasters, as well as of terrorist attacks that could lead to far more serious nuclear accidents,” said Jan Beranek, Greenpeace International Nuclear Campaigner.

Greenpeace International Press Release 16th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

UN inspectors have verified that North Korea has shut down its sole functioning nuclear reactor, the chief of the watchdog agency said yesterday, confirming Pyongyang’s first step to halt production of atomic weapons in nearly five years.

Independent 17th July 2007 more >>

North Korea’s chief nuclear negotiator has arrived in Beijing for six-nation talks focusing on how to implement the second phase of a key disarmament deal.

BBC 17th July 2007 more >>

Comment by John Gittings: In spite of progress over the Korean nuclear problem, the big question remains: are we going to have to live with North Korea as the ninth member of the nuclear club? Closing down the Yongbyon facility, about 60 miles north of the capital, Pyongyang, in exchange for economic aid is only the first step: the crunch will come when North Korea produces an inventory of its nuclear programmes. And it would be truly amazing if they listed in it the three or four, or perhaps nine or 10, nuclear weapons which they are believed to possess.

Guardian 16th July 2007 more >>

Germany

Vattenfall has fired its German nuclear chief after incidents at two nuclear power stations in the country that threatened a political backlash against the industry. The departure of Bruno Thomauske, managing director of Vattenfall Europe Nuclear Energy, followed communication failures and clashes with German authorities after a fire at the Krümmel nuclear power station and a short-circuit at Brunsbüttel, another power station also in north Germany. Both incidents took place a few hours apart on June 28, apparently coincidentally. Berlin had said licences to operate the plants could be withdrawn.

FT 17th July 2007 more >>

Spiegel Online 16th July 2007 more >>

Business Week 16th July 2007 more >>

IHT 16th July 2007 more >>

Forbes 16th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear Convoys

Letter: Every year six convoys, each of about 10 vehicles, carry loads of nuclear warheads and explosives some 400 miles by public roads from the atomic weapons establishment in Berkshire to Faslane and Coulport. We learn from a Ministry of Defence freedom-of-information release that there have been 50 “engineering incidents” and 17 “operational accidents” to convoy vehicles on Scottish roads in the past seven years. As a west of Scotland resident, I would be interested to know the precise route followed by these secret convoys in the middle of the night.

Herald 17th July 2007 more >>

Convoys of nuclear material in the UK have suffered a total of 67 safety incidents over the past seven years.

Yorkshire Post 16th July 2007 more >>

Star Wars

The United States may start building a missile shield in Poland in February 2008, Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski said in an interview published in a Russian newspaper today.

Daily Mail 16th July 2007 more >>

Trident

FOUR campaigners from the Weston and Somerset area were arrested as they spearheaded an emotional protest against the Government’s use of nuclear weapons outside the Faslane Royal Navy base in Scotland.

Weston Mercury 16th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 17 July 2007

16 July 2007

North Korea

United Nations inspectors have verified the shutdown of North Korea’s key reactor, the head of the UN nuclear agency has confirmed.

BBC 16th July 2007 more >>

North Korea says it has shut down its main nuclear reactor, stepping back from confrontation with the United States in a first concrete move towards disarmament. If the closure is confirmed by UN inspectors who returned to the reclusive totalitarian state on Saturday for the first time in four and a half years, it will be a major step towards the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

Independent 16th July 2007 more >>

Guardian 16th July 2007 more >>

FT 16th July 2007 more >>

Scotsman 16th July 2007 more >>

Telegraph 16th July 2007 more >>

Times 16th July 2007 more >>

In February, North Korea agreed to close down its nuclear reactor at Yongbyon in return for economic aid. Few at the time, especially in the United States, would have dared wager that, six months later, with a few hitches along the way, the secretive regime in Pyongyang would honour its pledge to the letter. Even fewer would have foreseen the spirit in which North Korea made the announcement, seeming almost to relish the sense of delivering on an international undertaking.

Independent 16th July 2007 more >>

South Korea sent a second shipment of heavy fuel oil to the North on Monday under a nuclear disarmament deal as international efforts to disable Pyongyang’s atomic arms programme picked up speed.

Mirror 16th July 2007 more >>

Japan

A powerful earthquake rattled Japan Monday, killing two people and injuring more than 260 as it toppled houses, triggered mudslides and set off a blaze at a nuclear power plant, various officials said.

Interactive Investor 16th July 2007 more >>

Forbes 16th July 2007 more >>

Reuters 16th July 2007 more >>

Telegraph website 16th July 2007 more >>

Times website 16th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear Convoys

CONVOYS of nuclear material have suffered a total of 67 safety incidents over the past seven years in the UK, it emerged yesterday. The Ministry of Defence revealed dozens of mechanical faults and equipment failures to the specialised transports since 2000, as well as delays and diversions caused by anti-nuclear protests.

Scotsman 16th July 2007 more >>

ICScotland 15th July 2007 more >>

Germany

E.ON AG has declined to comment on a report in Spiegel magazine which stated the German utility is in talks to acquire the license to operate the troubled Kruemmel nuclear power plant from Vattenfall.

Forbes 15th July 2007 more >>

Vattenfall AB chief executive Lars Goeran Josefsson told Berliner Zeitung that his company’s German unit did not communicate properly with the public during the recent fire at its Kruemmel nuclear power plant. “We were incompetent in our efforts to communicate properly,” Josefsson said in an interview to be published in tomorrow’s edition.

Interactive Investor 15th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 16 July 2007

15 July 2007

UKAEA

The Government is planning to sell off the rump of the state- owned UK Atomic Energy Authority. The auction of the nuclear decommissioning division of UKAEA, which will raise up to £400m for Treasury coffers, will be hotly contested. US engineering giants such as CH2M Hill, Bechtel and Fluor, as well as UK services company Amec, are all likely to be interested as they seek a slice of the £70bn nuclear clean-up market. UKAEA, which employs 2,300 people, receives some £300m a year from government body the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) to clean up civil nuclear research sites such as Dounreay in Scotland. It also leads UK research into nuclear fusion and is involved in the international venture to build a €4bn (£2.7bn) test facility in France. This smaller division will remain in government hands.

Independent on Sunday 15th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear Convoys

THE NUCLEAR bomb convoys that regularly pass through Scotland have suffered 67 safety incidents over the past seven years, sparking fears of a “catastrophic” accident. Lists obtained by the Sunday Herald from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) reveal details of dozens of mechanical faults and equipment failures since 2000, as well as delays and diversions caused by anti-nuclear protests. Incidents include numerous fuel leaks, a series of broken valves and several instances of engine and brake overheating. In October 2003, an axle began smoking due to “excessive use of wheel brakes” coming down a steep hill.

Sunday Herald 15th July 2007 more >>

Malaysia

Malaysia will build Southeast Asia’s first nuclear monitoring laboratory to allow scientists check the safety of atomic energy programs in the region, a report said Sunday. The 26-million-US-dollar facility would be built in central Pahang state and be operational in three years’ time.

Interactive Investor 15th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

The United States announced Saturday it learned that North Korea has shut down its Yongbyon nuclear facilities, and said it now hopes for “rapid progress” toward Pyongyang’s nuclear disarmament.

Interactive Investor 15th July 2007 more >>

Telegraph 15th July 2007 more >>

Reuters 14th July 2007 more >>

BBC 14th July 2007 more >>

Sky 14th July 2007 more >>

UN inspectors are starting to verify that North Korea has really closed down its nuclear reactor at Yongbyon, the top US nuclear envoy has said.

BBC 15th July 2007 more >>

Chronology of the nuclear stand-off.

BBC 15th July 2007 more >>

Q&A about North Korea

BBC 14th July 2007 more >>

A North Korean diplomat said Sunday that Pyongyang is ready to start disabling its nuclear programs now that it has shut down its sole operating reactor, as long as Washington lifts all sanctions against the communist nation.

Guardian website 15th July 2007 more >>

New nukes

Despite its environmentally unfriendly image, nuclear power is firmly back on the world’s energy agenda thanks to the need to cut carbon-dioxide emissions. Paul Norman, Andrew Worrall and Kevin Hesketh describe how the next generation of nuclear power stations will be cleaner and more efficient than ever.

Physics World July 2007 more >>

NDA

A PENSIONER who triggered a major security alert at the Nuclear Decommissioning Auth-ority’s Cumbrian headquarters says he cannot understand how it happened. Anti-nuclear campaigner Charles Barnett, 75, sent the envelope in which white crystals were found by NDA staff at Westlakes science park, near Whitehaven, on June 27. It led to more than 120 workers being quarantined while a chemical, biological, radiation and nuclear reaction unit and chemical testing team were dispatched to the scene. They later discovered that the suspicious substance was nothing more harmful than ordinary granulated sugar. Suffolk-based Mr Barnett, who has since been questioned under caution by police, says he is at a loss to understand how the sugar got into the A4-sized envelope. He denied that it was a publicity stunt.

Carlisle News and Star 14th July 2007 more >>

Coal

A decision is expected within weeks about whether Britain is to build the first coal-fired power station for more than 20 years – potentially unleashing a new generation of coal power. Planning officials are considering an application from Eon to build a new coal-fired station in Kent, which could supply 1.5 million homes. The decision is being watched by power companies considering at least three more coal-fired projects, and government officials forecast up to eight could be built by 2020.

Observer 15th July 2007 more >>

Aldermaston

The Government will this week kick off an auction for one of Britain’s most politically sensitive contracts. The Sunday Telegraph has learned that an announcement of the sale of the Government’s stake in the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), which manages the Aldermaston weapons site on behalf of the Ministry of Defence, will be made in Parliament tomorrow.

Sunday Telegraph 15th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 15 July 2007

14 July 2007

Iran

Iran has agreed to lift a three-month ban on visits by UN weapons inspectors to a main nuclear plant, in a raft of concessions that received a cautious welcome from Western powers.

Independent 14th July 2007 more >>

Scotsman 14th July 2007 more >>

Times 14th July 2007 more >>

Daily Mail website 13th July 2007 more >>

Guardian website 13th July 2007 more >>

BBC 13th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

UN inspectors have arrived in Pyongyang to monitor the shutdown of North Korea’s nuclear reactor, official Xinhua News Agency reported today.

ICWales 14th July 2007 more >>

The five years since the last UN nuclear inspections, however, is a long time for Chun Yung-woo, South Korea’s chief delegate at the six-party talks between the US, China, Japan, Russia and the two Koreas. The tectonic plates underneath the last unresolved conflict of the cold war may be about to shift with the return today of the inspectors to North Korea to monitor the shutdown of its only operating nuclear reactor.

Guardian 14th July 2007 more >>

A tanker carrying fuel oil docked at a North Korean port on Saturday under a deal by six countries on shutting down the communist state’s nuclear reactor, South Korea’s Unification Ministry said.

Reuters 14th July 2007 more >>

Oldbury

A nuclear power station has only been open for a total of eight days since August, it has been revealed. Oldbury Power Station in South Gloucestershire recently closed for an undisclosed reason, three days after reopening at the end of June. It was also closed at the end of May after a fire at the plant.

BBC 13th July 2007
more >>

Oldbury nuclear power station, which was closed in May after a fire in an electricity transformer, is losing £1 million per week, it has been revealed. The 39-year-old nuclear power station, in South Gloucestershire, was forced to shut down on May 30 after a fire broke out in a non-nuclear part of the plant. People reported hearing the explosion and seeing smoke from the nearby village of Oldbury. A number of inquiries have come to the conclusion that the fire occurred when moisture became mixed with oil within the transformer’s insulation. The power station had only been reopened for a few days when it was forced to close again because of problems with the plant’s turbine.

Western Daily Press 13th July 2007 more >>

Germany

Police searched offices at a German nuclear plant as part of an inquiry into a possible offence during a June 28 transformer fire at the site, state prosecutors said on Friday. The legislature of Schleswig-Holstein state warned the Swedish-owned company Vattenfall Europe that it might lose its license to operate Krümmel power station east of Hamburg. It called on company officials to testify at a state parliamentary inquiry next week.

DW-World 13th July 2007 more >>

Vattenfall Europe AG, Germany’s fourth-largest utility, expects its Kruemmel nuclear reactor, which caught fire on June 28, to remain stopped for at least “several more weeks” as regulators investigate the plant.

Bloomberg 13th July 2007 more >>

EDF

Lord Coe took the nuclear option yesterday as he accepted a cheque for as much as £80 million from the second significant sponsor for the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the national debate on renewable energy split, the Olympic colours will be nailed to the mast of EDF, the world’s biggest owner-operator of nuclear power stations. EDF, the state-owned French company, is the biggest company listed on the Paris stock exchange, with 58 reactors on 19 sites and plans to build new plants around the world, including Britain.

Times 12th July 2007 more >>

Parliament

Three of Gordon Brown’s 23 proposed Bills are:

Climate Change Bill a new body, the Committee on Climate Change, will police legally-binding, five-year “carbon budgets”.

Energy Bill will make way for a new generation of nuclear power stations. It will also allow for more incentives for renewable energy generation and carbon capture technology.

Housing and Regeneration Bill will merge English Partnerships and the Housing Corporation into a new agency to increase social and affordable housing. Major part of job will be to bring public sector land into use for house-building. Tenants will be given new rights and responsibilities.

Times 12th July 2007 more >>

Independent 11th July 2007 more >>

New nukes

PUPILS at Chuchfields School put their scientific thinking caps on and wrote to the Prime Minister about nuclear power.

Swindon Advertiser 13th July 2007 more >>

A group of experts gathered in Westminster, on 28th November 2006 to put the case for a non-nuclear energy strategy in the UK. The meeting was sponsored by Dr Ian Gibson MP and co-chaired by a panel of cross-party MPs. We have compiled a report – ‘Nuclear Power: Unnecessary,
Dangerous and Expensive’ – based on the presentations that were made on the day.

Nuclear Power No Thanks website 13th July 2007 more >>

Jordon

King Abdullah says that although he believes nuclear power is “sort of smelly and dangerous” he believes it is necessary for Jordon.

World Nuclear News 13th July 2007 more >>

Dounreay

The operators of the Dounreay nuclear plant were yesterday fined £15,000 for a safety lapse which led to a worker breathing in potentially deadly plutonium.

Aberdeen Press and Journal 13th July 2007 more >>

John O Groat Journal 13th July 2007 more >>

Proliferation

Two book reviews: “Doomsday Men” follows the chicken-and-egg circle of extraordinary scientific achievement, and the fiction that fed off it, to show how the idea of the doomsday weapon made possible the reality by preparing the political, cultural and – particularly among scientists – moral grounds for its acceptance. “The Atomic Bazaar”, on the other hand, investigates the drift of nuclear weapons technology from the hands of the rich world to those of the poor, attempting to ascertain where the 21st-century nuclear threat might really lie.

Guardian 14th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 14 July 2007

13 July 2007

THORP

THORP has been put on trial following the serious radioactive liquor leak which has left Sellafield’s troubled flagship plant virtually shutdown for nearly three years with the loss of many millions of pounds worth of valuable reprocessing income. Thorp is being allowed to start serious operations again by its owners, the NDA, who hopes the plant will come through with flying colours over the next month and pave the way to a full re-start. The Whitehaven News understands this is virtually a trial period to make sure everything is working all right after the expensive repairs to the plant along with checks on a vital support evaporator. The Nuclear Installations Inspectorate has already given thumbs up to a phased re-start but the final consent is subject to performance over the next few weeks. First material to be treated is the massive amount of liquor which spilled in the leak which went undetected for eight months. Most of the 800 or so Thorp operators are working normally again. Some have had to undergo “behavioural” training as a result of the leak. The NDA is banking on Thorp and Mox to make profits to offset the huge costs of Sellafield’s decommissioning otherwise a shadow will hang over the future of the two big production plants.

Whitehaven News 12th July 2007 more >>

NDA

The white powder sent to the NDA was sugar. It was sent by anti-Sizewell campaigner Charles Barnett who says he doesn’t know how it got into the envelope with the newsletter he was sending to Ian Roxburgh.

Whitehaven News 12th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear Spin

The nuclear industry’s biggest challenge: PR. Nuclear energy is safe, clean and long lasting, according to its proponents. But many people associate it with nuclear disaster or war and believe it is the most dangerous thing on the planet. It is time, argues Gia Milinovich, to update its image.

New Statesman Supplement on Energy 2nd July 2007 more >>

North Korea

The armed forces in North Korea warned Friday that a nuclear disarmament deal the government there has agreed to could be scrapped if the US keeps “pressurising” their country, North Korea’s official KCNA news agency reported. The North Korea will step up efforts to protect itself from a “US nuclear attack and preemptive strike” if the US keeps “pressurising [North Korea] under the pretext of the nuclear issue,” the armed forces said in a statement carried by KCNA.

Interactive Investor 13th July 2007 more >>

The shutdown of North Korea’s main nuclear reactor could be a “smooth process” completed within a month, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency said yesterday.

FT 13th July 2007 more >>

Body Parts Scandal

NUCLEAR scientists are feared to have stolen organs from the dead bodies of at least 122 people, it emerged yesterday. The body parts from adult or child crash victims were tested by boffins probing plutonium levels in human tissue.

The Sun 13th July 2007 more >>

Difficult questions are going to have to be asked and answered.

Whitehaven News 12th July 2007
more >>

Michael Redfern QC has said he will use the full powers available to him in order to get answers if he needs to.

Whitehaven News 12th July 2007 more >>

Iran

The UN nuclear watchdog has reached an agreement with Iran on how to conduct negotiations over Tehran’s contentious nuclear programme, the delegation’s chief said.

Channel 4 News 12th July 2007 more >>

German prosecutors on Thursday said they are investigating some 50 companies suspected of smuggling technology to Iran’s Bushehr nuclear power plant via Russia. Berlin-based company Vero is suspected of having smuggled material to build the nuclear reactor through Poland to Moscow, from where it was taken to Iran.

Forbes 12th July 2007 more >>

Iranian nuclear officials and a visiting team from the U.N. nuclear watchdog held a second round of talks on Thursday to discuss ways to remove outstanding questions about Iran’s disputed nuclear programme. Iran has offered to draw up an “action plan” to address Western suspicions that its nuclear programme is a front to obtain nuclear arms. Tehran says it needs nuclear technology only to generate power.

Reuters 12th July 2007 more >>

France

France has offered to co-operate on nuclear power with Algeria, having already offered help to Georgia and Vietnam.

World Nuclear News 12th July 2007
more >>

Dounreay

Dounreay operators have been fined £15,000 for a series of health and safety failings that led to a worker breathing in plutonium.

Channel 4 News 12th July 2007 more >>

ICScotland 12th July 2007 more >>

Herald 13th July 2007 more >>

THE operator of the Dounreay nuclear plant claims it has tightened safety procedures after being fined £15,000 yesterday for health and safety failings that led to a worker breathing in plutonium.

Scotsman 13th July 2007 more >>

A 49-YEAR-OLD Glasgow man is to have a key role in the bid to counter the job losses at Dounreay as the nuclear site is decommissioned at a cost of £2.7 billion. Roy Kirk, who spent over 20 years with the Scottish Office and the Scottish Executive, has just been appointed to the post of inward investment manager by the Caithness Regeneration Partnership and is looking forward to the challenge of his new job which he takes up next month. He told the Caithness Courier yesterday that the Far North can “achieve a number of positive outcomes” and said he will be considering various options. These will include energy – and particularly renewable energy – as well as tourism and the food-and-drink industry.

John O Groat Journal 11th July 2007 more >>

Aberdeen Press and Journal 11th July 2007 more >>

NEW security measures costing £500,000 are to be taken at the Dounreay plant. Work is to get under way early next month to realign the access to the site. A new roundabout is being built, together with new barriers and a vehicle inspection area on the approach to the entrance of the former reactor complex. The UKAEA has planned the work for some time, though momentum has been added with the latest terrorism incidents in London and Glasgow. The new measures have been recommended by the Office of Civil Nuclear Security (OCNS).

John O Groat Journal 11th July 2007more >>

Peace

BIN the bomb was the message from a group of travelling protestors who are on the road to campaign against nuclear weapons. The Peace Walk towards a Nuclear Free Future set off from Dublin on May 13 and aims to arrive in London on Hiroshima Day on August 6.

Matlock Mercury 12th July 2007 more >>

Proliferation

Are the risks associated with the possible proliferation of nuclear materials or the threat of terrorist attack against nuclear facilities a potential barrier to new build? Article by Steve Kidd of the World Nuclear Association.

Nuclear Engineering International 12th July 2007 more >>

Sellafield

A Sellafield scientist wanted to set fire to himself at work after being signed off with depression.

Carlisle News and Star 12th July 2007 more >>

Nuclear Waste

Packaging firm Iggesund Paperboard has objected to the controversial waste plant planned at Lillyhall.

Whitehaven News 12th July 2007 more >>

New nukes

We could have a nuclear power station on our doorstep if the government follows the advice of energy experts, the Post has learned. Friends of the Earth have told the Post Rugeley’s existing station could be converted to nuclear after a report revealed the government is considering building plants on the sites of existing coal and gas-fired stations in the Midlands.

Stafford Post 12th July 2007 more >>

Energy Efficiency

The government and energy supply industry yesterday began a £20m trial to encourage households to curb their use of gas and electricity and reduce Britain’s emissions of greenhouse gases. Some 15,000 homes will be equipped with so-called smart meters, allowing consumers and suppliers to track energy use, cutting out the need for meter readings and estimated bills.

Guardian 13th July 2007 more >>

Guardian 13th July 2007 more >>

Almost 13,000 households in Scotland will be able to see exactly how much they are spending on electricity as new “smart” technology is installed in their homes. About 10,000 Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) customers, mostly in Tayside, and a further 2640 people signed up to ScottishPower in South Lanarkshire are taking part in the trials.

Herald 13th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 13 July 2007

12 July 2007

New nukes

At last week’s PMQs Gordon Brown saiid the government would be going for nuclear power. That was a mistake because the High Court said there must be a full public consultation before a decision is taken. Brown had to find a way to withdraw the statement. Now, at PMQs on 11th July a Labour MP asked a planted question about nuclear power and Brown looked down and read from a statement, saying he’d only decide after the consultation. It was a stealth withdrawl of his statement last week. The MP who asked him the question used to be the press officer for BNFL – Jamie Reed MP. The point is, it was just like the old days. A planted question and a read-out statement to get the PM out of trouble. Glorious.

Ian Dale’s Diary 11th July 2007 more >>

Chernobyl

Birds with brightly-coloured plumages face a greater threat from radiation released during the 1986 Chernobyl disaster than many other species, a team of ecologists claims today.

Guardian 11th July 2007 more >>

US nuclear missiles

WHEN the US deployed nuclear missiles in England during the cold war, it did so despite safety warnings from UK government scientists, New Scientist has learned. Between 1983 and 1991, the US stationed 96 nuclear-tipped cruise missiles at Greenham Common in Berkshire, prompting the most prolonged and iconic of the UK’s protests against nuclear weapons. Now, previously top secret reports released to New Scientist by the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) under freedom of information legislation show that the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment at Aldermaston had estimated that 10 million people, including the population of London, could have been exposed to an “inhalation hazard” from plutonium if warheads exploded or caught fire. The Aldermaston reports will feature in a BBC Radio 4 documentary to be broadcast at 8 pm on Monday 16 July.

New Scientist, 11 July 2007 more >>

www.robedwards.com, 11 July 2007 more >>

Guardian 12th July 2007 more >>

Terror

Documents including “detailed plans” of Sizewell B were found in a car connected to the failed bomb attacks on the London transport system of 21 July 2005. An unidentified expert told the BBC that he had distributed the notes at a series of university lectures, and that they originated from the Sizewell B public enquiry. The expert said that the bombers had held the documents for “at least two years”. Police could release the information only after the conviction of Muktar Ibrahim, Yassin Omar, Ramzi Mohammed and Hussain Osman. They were each sentenced to life imprisonment to serve a minimum of 40 years on 9 July. Two other men face a retrial.
World Nuclear News 11th July 2007 more >>

Undercover investigators, working for a fake firm, obtained a licence to buy enough radioactive material to build a “dirty bomb,” amid little scrutiny from US federal regulators, according to a government report obtained on Wednesday.

Reuters 12th July 2007 more >>

A terrorist attack on Sizewell B nuclear power station in Suffolk could see a major evacuation involving 271,500 people, a new study has found. Nuclear expert John Large, who has just published the figures, believes the nuclear industry has put its “head in the sand” over terrorist concerns.

BBC 11th July 2007 more >>

EMERGENCY measures to combat a terrorist attempt on radioactive materials kept at Crewe do not go far enough to protect the public, Greenpeace has warned. Radioactive waste on its way to Sellafield’s THORP reprocessing plant is held overnight on a daily basis at Basford Sidings, half a mile away from Crewe town centre. But the environmental organisation claims that the lack of a dedicated contingency plan to deal with evacuating the area in the event of an incident is putting lives at risk.

Crewe Chronicle 11th July 2007 more >>

Iran

A UN nuclear watchdog delegation have arrived in Iran to see if the Tehran government is willing to answer all outstanding questions about its disputed nuclear programme, state television reported.

Channel 4 News 11th July 2007 more >>

ICWales 11th July 2007 more >>

The biggest nuclear threat from Iran is not the bomb – but a Chernobyl-style disaster at a poorly run power station, a leading safety expert has warned.
Iranian born Najmedin Meshkati, an expert in nuclear safety at the University of Southern California, fears that sanctions mean Iran cannot hire Western contractors to analyse safety or carry out quality control checks at its planned nuclear facilities. Instead, the country is forced to turn to Russia – and officials from the same ministry in charge at the time of the world’s worst nuclear power plant disaster at Chernobyl in 1986.

Life Style Extra 11th July 2007 more >>

Algeria

France and Algeria are discussing co-operation in the civil nuclear field as the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, attempts to give life to his ambition for a union of Mediterranean countries. As part of his efforts to improve his country’s long and often complicated relationship with Algeria, President Sarkozy has indicated he is willing to share French civil nuclear expertise. This was a key element of discussion with Algeria’s president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who met Mr Sarkozy on the first stop in his North African tour this week.

FT 12th July 2007 more >>

Dounreay

Nuclear plant operators are appearing in court accused of health and safety failings which led to a worker breathing in plutonium. The alleged breaches caused the employee at the Dounreay site in Caithness to suffer the radioactive intake, it is claimed. The case against the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) is to call at Wick Sheriff Court.

ICScotland 12th July 2007 more >>

Brazil

Brazil is committed to nuclear energy starting with the completion of Angra 3.

World Nuclear News 11th July 2007 more >>

Radwaste

Allerdale Council’s development panel has recommended refusal of a controversial nuclear decontamination site planned for Lillyhall, Workington. Residents near the Joseph Noble Road site have already expressed concern at Studsvik UK’s plans to recycle low-level radioactive items there. Cumbria County Council will make the final decision on the scheme.

Nelson Leader 11th July 2007 more >>

Europe

Fianna Fail MEPs are calling for the establishment of an independent inspectorate to monitor nuclear plants across Europe. The MEPs claim the European Commission has failed to publicise relevant information about these plants, including legal action that it is taking against the Sellafield factory in England. They say Ireland is entitled to be kept up to date on all relevant information relating to the Sellafield site.

Belfast Telegraph 11th July 2007 more >>

Energy Efficiency

Superglass, which makes glass wool used to insulate a quarter of the nation’s lofts, is floating on the stock market today with a price tag of £105m. The Scotland-based firm has experienced rapid and growing demand for its range of insulation products spurred by government initiatives to improve energy efficiency, and tougher building regulations.

Independent 12th July 2007 more >>

Companies

EDF, the French state-controlled electricity and gas group, has become the second top-tier sponsor to sign up for the London 2012 Olympics. The group joins Lloyds TSB as a tier-one sponsor signed up by Locog, the organiser of London’s Olympic and Paralympic games that is trying to raise £2bn towards the cost of the games.

FT 12th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

A ship carrying the first delivery of energy aid to North Korea, under a key nuclear disarmament deal, has left a South Korean port. The ship, carrying 6,200 tons of fuel oil, is expected to arrive in North Korea on Saturday.

BBC 12th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 12 July 2007

11 July 2007

Body Parts Scandal

The scandal of dead nuclear workers’ organs being taken without consent escalated yesterday as it emerged there may be hundreds more victims than previously thought. Relatives of at least 57 deceased employees of the Sellafield power plant had already been horrified to discover their corpses had been plundered for a secret research project on radiation poisoning. But it has since emerged that the covert “body- snatching” programme involved staff of at least four other nuclear sites – as well as “control groups” made up of members of the public living both nearby and further afield who may have died in road accidents.

This is London 11th July 2007 more >>

North West Evening Mail 10th July 2007 more >>

Daily Mail website 10th July 2007 more >>

Nelson Leader 10th July 2007 more >>

The barrister investigating the removal of body parts from Sellafield workers and those at other nuclear plants over 30 years said yesterday that he expected the number of cases would rise beyond the 65 already disclosed by BNFL.

Guardian 11th July 2007 more >>

Hundreds of former nuclear workers may have had their body parts illegally stored over nearly 30 years, it was revealed last night. The disclosure came as a barrister announced details of an independent inquiry into events at Sellafield, Cumbria, and four other nuclear establishments.

Telegraph 11th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

UN inspectors tasked with supervising the shutdown of North Korea’s bomb-making nuclear reactor are expected to return to the communist nation around this weekend.

Channel 4 News 11th July 2007 more >>

Brazil

Brazil’s president has pledged to revive a long-stalled project to build the country’s third nuclear reactor and also a nuclear submarine.

BBC 11th July 2007 more >>

President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said that Brazil will budget about $540 million over eight years to complete its nuclear program, including uranium enrichment and possibly building a nuclear-powered submarine.

Guardian website 11th July 2007 more >>

NDA

Fifty newly-recruited scientists and engineers in charge of the government’s nuclear decommissioning programme in Harwell and Winfrith are to be sacked by Christmas, with another 150 facing redundancy next June.

Guardian 11th July 2007 more >>

Iran

The US Government is the real threat. Opinion piece about Iran’s nuclear programme.

Mathaba 11th July 2007 more >>

Russia

A joint venture dedicated to manufacturing the conventional islands of Russian nuclear power plants has been forged between Alstom and JSC Atomenergomash, part of Rosatom, following a framework agreement signed in April. The joint venture, in which Atomenergomash will hold 51% and Alstom 49%, will be located in Podolsk, close to Moscow. It will manufacture the entire conventional island of nuclear power plants based on Alstom’s Arabelle half-speed turbine technology, that Alstom will transfer to the new company, named Alstom Atomenergomash.

Nuclear Engineering International 10th July 2007 more >>

South Korea

Korea’s Doosan Heavy has begin preliminary excavation work on the Shin-Wolsong 1 and 2 Nuclear Power Plant. Having obtained the construction permit from the Ministry of Science and Technology the initial concrete installation ceremony for the installation of Shin-Kori nuclear reactor 2 was held on 5 June.

Nuclear Engineering International 10th July 2007 more >>

US

Florida and California are both considering nuclear plans, with Florida even contemplating building a reprocessing plant.

World Nuclear News 10th July 2007 more >>

Companies

General Electric Co. and Hitachi Ltd. launched a joint nuclear business to capitalize on rising demand for electricity and increasing concerns about carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired plants.

Manufacturing.net 10th July 2007 more >>

New nukes

Four designs have been declared eligible for the first stage of the pre-licensing process.

North West Evening Mail 10th July 2007 more >>

Gordon Brown has had a torrid start as an environmental leader. In PM question time last week he told the Commons ” … we have made the decision to continue with nuclear power”. Tut, tut, Mr B. Your civil servants are having kittens because a high court judge ruled in February that the government had failed to consult the public properly on nuclear last year and should therefore not be seen to have made a decision in advance of another consultation. Greenpeace lawyers have now written both to Brown and the Treasury demanding that the statement be retracted and the new consultation be abandoned, but No 10 is bluffing it out. “A decision has been taken [on nuclear] in principle,” says a spokesman. “A full consultation is now taking place.”

Guardian 11th July 2007 more >>

China

China has sufficient uranium reserves to last until 2020.

Mathaba 10th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 11 July 2007

10 July 2007

North Korea

Six-nation talks on scrapping North Korea’s nuclear programme are likely to resume next week, South Korea’s foreign ministry said Tuesday.

Interactive Investor 10th July 2007 more >>

Guardian website 10th July 2007 more >>

The UN’s nuclear agency has approved sending experts to North Korea to supervise the shutdown of its plutonium-producing reactor, the agency’s chief Mohamed ElBaradei said.

Channel 4 News 9th July 2007 more >>

Belfast Telegraph 9th July 2007 more >>

BBC 9th July 2007 more >>

Finland

Alongside two existing reactors, industry-controlled utility Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) is building a third in a bid to meet European Union carbon dioxide reduction targets and feed a growing economy — a rare new nuclear project in largely nuclear-sceptical Western Europe. In a little more than a decade there could be two to three new reactors, despite Environment Minister Paula Lehtomaki joining environmental groups in expressing alarm at what she sees as a growing acceptance of nuclear power as an environmentally friendly alternative to other forms of energy.

Planet Ark 10th July 2007 more >>

Companies

General Electric Co. and Hitachi Ltd. on Monday launched a joint nuclear business to capitalize on rising demand for electricity and increasing concerns about carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired plants.

Forbes 10th July 2007 more >>

Babcock International Group PLC said its offer for International Nuclear Solutions PLC (INS) has become unconditional after it said it owns or has received valid acceptances for 31.7 mln INS shares, or about 50.9 pct of the company’s issued share capital.

Interactive Investor 9th July 2007 more >>

Iran

Iran has scaled back its uranium enrichment programme, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said. The move on the part of Tehran could signal willingness to resolve the international stand-off over its nuclear defiance. IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei spoke at the end of a special meeting of his agency’s 35-nation board that approved sending an agency team to North Korea as well as agreeing on the IAEA’s 2008-2009 budget.

Channel 4 News 9th July 2007 more >>

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his visiting Italian counterpart Romano Prodi on Monday reiterated both countries’ determination to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.

Africasia 9th July 2007 more >>

India

A site in India’s Orissa State is under investigation for its suitability for a 4 – 6000MWe nuclear facility.

World Nuclear News 9th July 2007 more >>

Niger

A Chinese uranium mining company executive has been kidnapped in Niger.

World Nuclear News 9th July 2007 more >>

Terror

On the eve of the entry into force of the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism, the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) pledged support for the pact.

eGov Monitor 9th July 2007 more >>

Investment

The role nuclear energy can and will play in a carbon constrained future is being hotly debated – particularly by socially responsible investors
Nuclear power is routinely excluded from socially responsible investment fund portfolios, along with other often-maligned industries including tobacco, alcohol and mining. But with demand for energy growing, oil prices climbing and concerns about climate change on the rise, some argue it is time to include nuclear power in the responsible energy equation. Calvert, a leading US socially responsible investor, is one fund thought to be reconsidering its stance on nuclear power. Managers polled shareholders for input in December, although to date the group still screens against companies involved in nuclear technology.

Ethical Corporation 9th July 2007 more >>

Oil

The world faces an oil supply crunch with prices poised to soar to new all-time highs over the next five years, a report from the International Energy Agency warned yesterday.

Independent 10th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 10 July 2007

9 July 2007

New nukes

Four companies have been given the green light for their reactor designs, moving construction of new nuclear power stations in the UK a step closer. Areva, the largest reactor maker in the world, has received approval from the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate, along with Westinghouse, owned by Japan’s Toshiba, and US giant General Electric. Canada’s AECL has also won approval. Sources close to the nuclear industry said the real competition to win the potentially multi-billion pound work was now on. They added the strongest contenders were Areva, Westinghouse and GE.

Telegraph 9th July 2007 more >>

Toshiba is in advanced talks to sell a 10 per cent stake in Westinghouse Electric, the US nuclear power company of which it acquired control last year, to a state-run Kazakh resources company. The proposed sale to Kazatomprom, likely to be worth nearly Y65bn ($527m), would help Westinghouse’s efforts to improve its supply of uranium, an increasingly important factor in winning contracts to build nuclear power stations.

FT 9th July 2007 more >>

Regulation

Regulator Ofgem may be given new powers to tackle Britain’s long-term gas and electricity needs and counter the short-termist investment strategies of companies that have been blamed for the UK’s energy crisis. Ofgem has written to power companies to tell them that it is to investigate the electricity market, and has asked for “initial thoughts” about “looking significantly further into the future” than the regulator’s existing five-yearly price reviews.

Telegraph 9th July 2007 more >>

Iran

David Miliband, foreign secretary, has warned Iran that the UK government will maintain a tough stance on Tehran’s nuclear ambitions, insisting that the Iranian regime “doesn’t have the right to set off a nuclear arms race in the Middle East”.

FT 9th July 2007 more >>

Telegraph 9th July 2007 more >>

BBC 9th July 2007 more >>

Finland

Finland — eager to avoid power shortages ahead of tighter EU carbon emission policies — is building a fifth nuclear reactor and seeing new plans emerging from an industry keen to build more. This Factbox has key facts about nuclear power in Finland, Europe and the world.

Reuters 8th July 2007 more >>

North Korea

The International Atomic Energy Agency’s governing body is expected on Monday to authorise the dispatch of U.N. monitors to North Korea to verify the shutdown of its atomic bomb programme, diplomats said.

Reuters 9th July 2007 more >>

Guardian website 8th July 2007 more >>

THORP

Ministers are planning to give permission to use British stockpiled plutonium as fuel for German nuclear reactors because of the two-year closure of the Thorp reprocessing plant – a move some industry experts believe is against the law. The government has been forced to consider what it describes as “virtual reprocessing” amid fears that without the use of the plutonium, German reactors would have to be closed down, leading to expensive legal claims against the British Nuclear Group because it cannot fulfil its contracts to supply fuel.

Guardian 9th July 2007 more >>

Carbon Capture

The government has been warned it needs to take a quick decision to spend almost £1bn to experiment with the potential benefits of carbon sequestration and capture to fight global warming. Gordon Brown has spoken about Britain becoming a pioneer in this revolutionary sector and the energy white paper outlined the criteria by which companies would compete for part-funding for trials. However, oil and electricity providers are understood to have privately told ministers they will need more than £300m for each of the three expected experimental facilities, according to industry sources.

Guardian 9th July 2007 more >>

Posted: 9 July 2007