Plans to expand Hinkley Point nuclear power station near Burnham-On-Sea have been thrown into doubt, according to a report in the Financial Times. The paper says that power company Centrica, which owns British Gas, is threatening to abandon its investment in the scheme.
Burnham-on-sea.com 21st April 2012 more >>
The need to drive for more progress was the message at a major west Cumbrian conference. The West Cumbria Nuclear Futures event, at the Energus Centre in Lillyhall yesterday, saw some of the nuclear industrys leading figures, union officials and community leaders. Among them was Copeland MP Jamie Reed who delivered a hard-hitting speech over what he sees as delays in delivering the areas anticipated nuclear benefits. Mr Reed said: There is no cavalry coming to help us it is down to us. The truth is we are the people we have been waiting for. If we do not act now we will become architects of our own destruction.
Cumberland News 21st April2012 more >>
A group of anti-nuclear campaigners will gather at Sizewell in Suffolk to commemorate the anniversary this week of the Chernobyl disaster. The nuclear power plant disaster took place on the 26th April 1986 in northern Ukraine. The campaigners will gather at a camp on the beach by the power station in Suffolk and hold a remembrance event on Sunday afternoon. Sizewell has seen a number of protests since it was named by the government as a possible site for a new nuclear plant.
ITV Anglia 21st April 2012 more >>
Geoffrey Lean: David Cameron pledged to run the greenest government ever. It was a very simple ambition and one that Im absolutely committed to achieving. This Thursday will show if hes as good as his word, as he makes his first speech on the environment as Prime Minister since that brief address at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. The occasion has been planned for some time, to restore the Governments fading green reputation; this is perhaps Mr Camerons last chance to ensure his two-year-old promise is realised. Last month, the Chancellor bounced Ed Davey, the inexperienced new Energy Secretary, into setting emission standards for gas power stations that are likely to nullify Britains greenhouse gas targets. A third runway at Heathrow, ruled out when the Coalition took office, is now getting a hearing. And this week, Downing Street briefed against the conservatory tax which doesnt affect conservatories, and would actually make householders better off that is designed to make the Green Deal effective. All this has deterred the very growth the Prime Minister promised, since green industries though one of the fastest-growing sectors of the economy are particularly vulnerable to political uncertainty. Many have deferred investment. And, just this week, a Korean firm scrapped plans for offshore wind turbine factories that would have created 1,700 jobs.
Telegraph 20th April 2012 more >>
Geoffrey Lean: Whod have thought it? All five leading candidates in the French election, apart from Nicolas Sarkozy, want to scale back or reassess the countrys commitment to nuclear power. Its one more sign of the retreat from the atom that I have been banging on about for many months which could well endanger our own nuclear plans. François Hollande, the favourite, is the most sceptical of all, pledging to close 24 of 58 reactors. Things are even more critical in Japan almost as enthusiastic as France, until the Fukushima disaster. The only two reactors still operating are set to go offline soon, leaving it with no nuclear power for the first time in over 40 years. Even here in Britain, where the Government remains keen, things have taken a marked turn for the worse. Last month, the German utilities E.ON and RWE pulled out of building nuclear plants in Wales and Gloucestershire. Last week, GDF Suez effectively threatened to abandon its plan to construct one at Sellafield. And ratings agency Moodys has hinted that it could downgrade the members of the remaining nuclear construction consortium, EDF and Centrica, if they proceed. EDF, as a French nationalised company, is relatively inured against financial pressures, but vulnerable to political ones. So a Hollande win could be the final straw. Britains energy policy, too, is being cast into doubt by those French votes.
Telegraph 20th April 2012 more >>
The UK is set to miss its renewable energy targets by a wide margin a failure that could result in billions of pounds being added to energy bills as we rely increasingly on imported gas, according to a new study. Only 3% of the UK’s energy currently comes from renewable sources, such as sun and wind, compared with a European average of 12%, despite a series of high-profile government policies aimed at increasing that percentage. Britain is committed to producing 15% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020 but campaigners say that the government currently has no prospect of achieving that target. The evidence that the UK is falling behind will embarrass David Cameron as he hosts a two-day international meeting on renewables, the Clean Energy Ministerial, beginning in London on Wednesday. Energy ministers from the world’s 20 biggest economies will be at the event, where they will discuss strategies for co-operating on developing low-carbon emission technology and policy. Meanwhile, green campaigners attacked government plans for a new “dash for gas”, which could see a host of gas-fired power stations built across the country that green groups have warned will lock in fossil-fuel infrastructure for decades.
Guardian 21st April 2012 more >>
Louise Wilson is one of three founders of Abundance Generation, which she describes as being like a building society for low-carbon technology. The firm is the first of its kind, and aims to bridge the gap between the average citizen and the renewable projects sprouting up all over the country by allowing anyone to invest as little as £5 in new ventures. Wilson argues that Abundance provides an alternative to savings accounts and funds that often offer no more than an abstract concept of where your money is going and what the return might be.
Sunday Times 22nd April 2012 more >>
SOLAR Electricity Systems is branching into other forms of energy generation for the home following soaring sales during the Glasgow-based companys second year of trading. The firm, which has installed 32,000 solar panels on 1,800 houses across Scotland, has signed a deal with boiler specialist Vokera to supply thermal panels used to heat water. It is expected to be the first in a series of agreements to extend the firms offering beyond its core business of installing solar panels which generate domestic electricity.
Scotland on Sunday 22nd April 2012 more >>