Letter Steuart Campbell: I am curious to know what your statement that it is Labour policy to import “expensive and uninsurable nuclear technology from other countries” (News, 3 April) means? Since there are now no UK consortia able to build nuclear power stations, it is inevitable that new plants will be built by foreign companies. The statement also implies that nuclear plants are too expensive and uninsurable. They are expensive to build but not to run. As for insurance, this is provided by a pool of UK insurers comprising eight insurance companies and 16 Lloyds syndicates. The premiums are paid by the plant operators, and although their liability is restricted to the first £140 million towards any cleanup, there is a proposal to increase that to £1 billion.
Scotland on Sunday 10th April 2011 more >>
IAEA status updates after 7th April earthquake.
IB Times 9th April 2011 more >>
Japan’s industry minister has met workers battling to cool overheating reactors and plug radioactive leaks in the first government visit to the country’s tsunami-crippled nuclear plant. The visit came as one of the country’s top nuclear officials called for a sweeping review of safety standards in the industry and Tokyo warned the crisis at the plant was far from over.
Yahoo 10th April 2011 more >>
The four-week-old nuclear crisis would seem like a perfect showcase for Japans advanced robotics industry. Human technicians at Fukushima are suffering from injuries and exhaustion, and have been prevented from carrying out critical repair work by dangerous levels of radiation. What, then, would be more welcome than a fleet of remote-controlled mechanical drones? Yet in reality, robots capable of responding to nuclear accidents are thin on the ground in Japan a reflection, experts say, of both the limits of current robotics technology and of power-plant operators reluctance to invest in improving it.
FT 10th April 2011 more >>
THE crisis in Japan has bruised the country’s reputation for excellence. Its hyper-efficient supply chains were shown to have major vulnerabilities. Its prestigious nuclear technology companies look feeble. Its renown for food safety has been undermined by fears of radiation contamination. At least one Western diplomat and economist believes that the stature of Japanese goods in the minds of consumers overseas may be severely damaged. “People buy ‘brand Japan’ because it implies a premiumthat the quality will be better, or the product is more reliableand now they don’t have that,” he says.
Economist 10th April 2011 more >>
Regulators said the pumping of radioactive water into waters off Japan from a crippled nuclear plant would end today, one day later than planned. Plant operator TEPCO said work was interrupted by an after-shock last Thursday.
Irish Independent 10th April 2011 more >>
With the recent increase in concern over the risk of nuclear power generation, many countries are questioning the future composition of their electricity sources. Some analysts and governments have noted that coal is well placed as the obvious substitute for nuclear to ensure the growing electricity demand faced by many nations. But despite recent concerns over nuclear, many energy experts are reluctant to write it off as a bygone energy source. Current market sentiment remains strong for thermal coal, but it would be premature to think that coal will eat the lunch of nuclear.
IB Times 9th April 2011 more >>
Police today removed Neptune Network’s campaigners from the railway line at Sellafield. Why Oh Why are’nt thousands of Cumbrians sat on the railway preventing nuclear wastes from being delivered to Sellafield? The wastes that Neptune Network are blowing the whistle on, travel to Sellafield from around the world and through “reprocessing” even higher level wastes are added to the growing toxic brew. Norwegian campaigner, Frank Hugo Storelv said “The plant cannot handle the waste they already have in a responsible way and they say themselves that Sellafield cannot accommodate more without creating an untenable security situation. Sellafield stores most of the world’s nuclear waste and Norway is under threat from this.”
101 uses for nuclear power 9th April 2011 more >>
Stop Hinkley today expressed concern at warnings from the French Nuclear Safety Authority, ASN, about the dangers of the Hinkley C reactor design. ASN President Andre-Claude Lacoste told the French media that he could not rule out a moratorium on the third generation European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) nuclear reactor under construction at Flamanville in Normandy, northern France.
Stop Hinkley Press Release 8th April 2011 more >>
Talk on 14th April at Conwy on decommissioning and future plans
Institution of Civil Engineers April 2011 more >>
A Jesuit priest in Indian has called for an end to the country’s nuclear programme. With less than half of the billions that are expected to be spent on nuclear energy it might be possible to deliver electricity in every city and every house in India, Father Ambrose Pinto told the Missionary News Service. Father Pinto who has recently taken over the leadership of Saint Josephs University College in Bangalore said that the institute is soon to be powered exclusively by solar energy – and he said he believes it should be possible to develop alternative forms of energy across India at half the cost the country is planning to spend on developing nuclear power through a new agreement with the US. According to the New York Times, the agreement is worth some150 billion US dollars.
Independent Catholic News 9th April 2011 more >>