U.S. nuclear energy developers on Tuesday met with President Donald Trump and asked for help winning contracts to build power plants in the Middle East and elsewhere overseas. The push comes as developers seek U.S. government approval of next-generation advanced and small modular nuclear reactors — and the administration’s help in selling their products to the world. The International Atomic Energy Agency predicts that some 554 gigawatts of nuclear electric generating capacity will come online by 2030, a 42 percent increase over current levels. The White House meeting included representatives from a range of nuclear developers, including NuScale Power LLC, TerraPower LLC, Westinghouse Electric Co. LLC and General Electric Co, as well as supplier Centrus Energy Corp. and other companies. It was initiated by Jack Keane, a retired Army general and the co-founder of IP3 International, a company that has advocated American nuclear power development in the Middle East, according to two people familiar with the session.
Bloomberg 12th Feb 2019 read more »
Long-Delayed Vogtle Nuclear Plants Want To Delay Reporting How Much Longer They’ll Be Delayed. When centrists insist we need to build more nuclear power plants as part of the decarbonization push to prevent climate change, they ignore two very important things: New nuclear power plants are fiendishly expensive and have a lousy track record of getting built on time. Or even at all. Southern Company’s Georgia Power division started building its new Vogtle nuclear reactors in 2009, with expected completion in 2016. It’s now three years later, the two reactors have been delayed till 2021 and 2022, and now Georgia Power is asking to delay reporting on whether or not those delayed openings will once again be delayed.
Clean Technica 11th Feb 2019 read more »
Despite being labelled as a “socialist manifesto”, the Green New Deal (GND) on climate change and jobs has sparked a lively debate in US politics. So what’s in the deal and what will be its likely impact? President Trump was quick to thrash the Democrats’ new approach to tackling rising temperatures. Speaking in El Paso, he said the Green New Deal amounted to “taking away your car, taking away your plane flights”. However in its current form, the GND is more a political statement than a set of proposals aimed at penalising US citizens. Introduced by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey, the GND is a large scale re-imagining of how economies should work to deal with the root causes of climate change. It firmly and deliberately sets out to echo the past glories of FDR and the economi c New Deal of the 1930s. Republican leader in the US Senate, Mitch McConnell, said on Tuesday he will bring it to the Senate floor for a vote, so Democrats will have to back it or distance themselves from it. In the document, the GND calls for a “new national, social, industrial, and economic mobilisation on a scale not seen since World War II and the New Deal.” The plan is built around the recent warnings from scientists about the impacts on the planet of a temperature rise of 2 degrees Celsius this century, above pre-industrial levels.
BBC 12th Feb 2019 read more »
Gregory Jaczko, former chairman of U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and author of “Confessions of a Rogue Nuclear Regulator,” discusses the safety of nuclear energy and whether it should play a potential role in Democrats’ Green New Deal.
Bloomberg 11th Feb 2019 read more »
Employment at companies making equipment for the solar power industry is expected to be lower this year than it was in 2017, despite a small revival helped by tariffs the Trump administration introduced last year. An annual survey of employment from the Solar Foundation, an industry-backed think-tank, has found that about 35,000 people are expected to work in the US manufacturing panels, brackets and other components this year, up from about 34,000 last year but down from a peak of 38,000 in 2016. President Donald Trump introduced a new 30 per cent tariff on solar cells and panels early last year, in one of the first moves in his strategy of using import barriers to revive US manufacturing. The results after a year show that those ambitions have met with only limited success, although the worst fears of a devastating impact on developments of new solar projects have also not been fulfilled. Manufacturing capacity in the US for solar panels, or modules as they are known in the industry, is increasing sharply. In the third quarter of last year, production was running at an annualised rate of about 1.2 gigawatts of generation a year, and companies including Hanwha Q-Cells, First Solar and Jinko Solar plan to increase that by about a further 4GW, the Solar Foundation has calculated. That manufacturing capacity would be equivalent to more than half of the 8.2GW of new solar generation that the US Energy Information Administration expects to be installed this year. A surge in domestic production would represent a huge shift from the 12 months to October 2018, when about 90 per cent of the panels used in the US were imported.
FT 12th Feb 2019 read more »
Solar energy sector lost 8,000 jobs in US last year, but future looks bright – report. Despite second consecutive year of declines, report concludes the long-term outlook for solar energy production is positive.
Guardian 12th Feb 2019 read more »