The world’s first floating nuclear power plant, currently under construction, has been seized by the Court of Arbitration of Saint Petersburg as the shipyard building it faces bankruptcy proceedings. Despite the seizure, a Rosatom spokesman told the Moscow Times, “Work is continuing as normal, and I think it should be commissioned on schedule by 2012.”
World Nuclear News 15th Aug 2011 more >>
EDF Energy’s 610-megawatt Heysham 1-1 nuclear reactor is scheduled to restart on Aug. 25, after the operator stopped the unit on Monday for refuelling.
Reuters 15th Aug 2011 more >>
Mushrooms joined the threats to Japans food chain from radiation spewed by Tokyo Electric Power Co.s Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant, as the country expands efforts to limit the effects of the disaster. Japan is under pressure to enhance food inspections as it has no centralized system for detecting radiation contamination. About two-thirds of Japans prefectures now plan to check rice crops, the Mainichi newspaper said today, citing a survey. Half of Japans rice is grown within range of emissions from the crippled nuclear plant, and farmers are awaiting the results of tests before harvesting begins this month.
Vancouver Sun 14th Aug 2011 more >>
The Japanese cabinet decided this week to transfer the country’s nuclear safety agency from the trade ministry, where it nestled in a department also dedicated to the expansion of nuclear power, to the environment ministry, where, at least in theory, there is some chance that its operations will not be subverted or manipulated by Japanese energy firms. After nearly half a century of producing nuclear power, Japan has finally separated regulation from promotion, but the move may well have come too late to restore public trust. The impulse to minimise the inherent risks of the most dangerous technology man has ever tried to master, the tendency to conceal or downplay accidents, the assertion that each succeeding generation of plants is foolproof and super safe, and the presumption, so often proved wrong by events, that every contingency has been provided for, all these have been evident again and again. Angela Merkel, one of the few leading politicians who is also a scientist, saw the writing on the wall. Her decision to phase out nuclear power has revived a global debate which has been dormant for far too long.
Guardian 16th Aug 2011 more >>
A senior Russian official, National Security Council secretary Nikolai Patrushev, arrived on Monday for talks with Iranian officials on the country’s nuclear programme, state news agency IRNA reported.
AFP 15th Aug 2011 more >>
Social housing tenants will be able to gain access to green forms of heating, such as wood-fired boilers, solar-powered hot water systems and heat pumps, under plans unveiled . The heating should help to save households money and cut carbon dioxide emissions. It will be paid for from a £3m fund for social housing, ring-fenced as part of the £860m renewable heat incentive. Households will also be encouraged to take up insulation, to be offered at no upfront cost from late next year under the “green deal”, in the form of loans that are paid back in instalments through additions to household energy bills. However, green think-tanks have calculated that under the current rules, the “green deal” is unlikely to work, as the interest charged on the loans will be too high to deliver sufficient savings to attract people.
Guardian 15th Aug 2011 more >>