Proposed planning reforms, say critics, will enable ministers to sidestep public opposition and smooth the way for bigger airports, roads, power stations and other major building projects.
Guardian 9th May 2007
Support services company Babcock International Group Plc has agreed to buy Devonport, the dockyard where Britain refuels its nuclear-powered submarines, for 350 million pounds ($697 million) cash, it said on Thursday.
Reuters 10th May 2007
The council of the Finnish city of Loviisa on Wednesday voted against a preliminary agreement to sell land to German utility E.ON for a planned nuclear power station.
Virtual Finland 10th May 2007
French nuclear solutions provider Areva and Sogin, which manages Italy’s nuclear facilities, have signed a contract worth over E250 million to reprocess 235 tons of used nuclear fuel. In a press release, Areva said that the contract follows the intergovernmental agreement signed between France and Italy on November 24, 2006. The contract covers the transport, reprocessing and packaging of used fuel from the Caorso, Trino and Garigliano facilities, which will involve 190, 32 and 13 tons of nuclear waste, respectively.
Energy Business Review 9th May 2007
A Pakistani public information campaign about what to do if you stumble across stray radioactive material is raising hairs on the necks of Western arms control experts. The ads, which appeared last week in several Urdu-language newspapers, featured the large, yellow radiation symbol and a warning to report any lost or misplaced isotopes.
Nature 9th May 2007
The Conservative candidate Nicolas Sarkozy was elected French President on 6 May. He won 53% of the national vote, while Socialist candidate Segolene Royal got 47%. If elected, Royal had promised to revoke the decree signed by the current Conservative government in April that approved Electricite de France’s (EdF’s) construction of an EPR unit at Flamanville. She had also promised to hold a new national debate on energy policy. Royal said the decision taken by the French parliament to develop the EPR was taken under conditions of contestable analysis and debate, no impact study was presented and there were no proposals for diversification of the energy mix. However, Sarkozy’s victory means that EdF will keep its licence to build the 1600 MWe reactor. He has stated that combating climate change will be one of his priorities.
World Nuclear News 9th May 2007
On a cold and windy Sunday in January 1968, a US bomber with nuclear weapons crashed near Thule Air base in North-West Greenland. Locals and US personnel from the base ran to the crash site to see if there was anything they could do. Jeffry Carswell was one person who helped clear up the debris from the crash. He later developed cancer and holds that the Danish government did not sufficiently deal with the consequences of the crash. His petition asking for redress will be debated by MEPs today.
European Parliament News 9th May 2007
Israel and France once made a secret deal to produce a nuclear bomb together, according to a new biography of Israeli elder statesman Shimon Peres. The deal was later cancelled, but the disclosure in the book by Israeli historian Michael Bar-Zohar sheds new light on the depth of France’s involvement in making Israel the Middle East’s sole atomic power.
Reuters 9th May 2007
A former Iranian nuclear negotiator who reportedly faces espionage charges was released on bail Wednesday, state television said.
Guardian website 10th May 2007
The government drew sharp criticism from the country’s fledgling renewables industry yesterday as it relaunched a controversial grant system but slashed the funds available for some technologies. Electricity generating systems such as solar photovoltaics and small wind turbines will now be uneconomic for households, even though the government has pledged a big rise in the use of renewables over the coming decade, experts said.
Guardian 10th May 2007
The directors of a solar power company are to net a £240m windfall in the biggest flotation yet of a renewables business on the London market. PV Crystalox Solar, which makes silicon wafers for solar roof panels, is expected to be valued at around £500m when it lists on the main market next month.
Independent 10th May 2007
Twenty-two firms have formed an alliance to compete for work and spark new development in the area. It is to put itself in the shop window at the All-Energy conference and exhibition – the biggest event in the renewable energy calendar – in Aberdeen on May 23 and 24. The Caithness Energy Alliance is to market the advantages the area has in terms of its industrial track record, research activities and natural resources. Its stand at the exhibition has been funded by the UK Atomic Energy Authority and HIE Caithness and Sutherland. Alliance spokeswoman Louise Smith said “This is a great opportunity for local firms to look beyond their traditional nuclear-based work and seize the opportunities that exist in the renewables market.
John O Groat Journal 9th May 2007