One of the loudest arguments of those who profess that traditional energy is needed even if renewables markets grow large is that modern nations cannot be powered properly without it. In particular, they say, renewables cannot meet baseload demand. Late last year, a German economics ministry experiment showed that distributed power can indeed produce reliable baseload in a secure and reliable manner. Thirty-six decentralised renewable plants – a mix of biogas, wind, solar (photovoltaics, or PV) and hydropower – were linked by three companies and a university in a nationwide network controlled by a central computer.
Guardian website 26th Feb 2008 more >>
The complex job of cleaning up Britain’s dirtiest nuclear site is drawing some of the world’s biggest engineering companies to the poorest corner of north-west England, but local companies are wondering how they will fare in the fight for lucrative contracts.
FT 25th Feb 2008 more >>
The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority has lost its grasp on the cost of handling nuclear waste produced by the latest series of power plants planned by the government, according to the Public Accounts Committee. PAC chairman Edward Leigh told NDA chief executive Ian Roxburgh that he thought he had lost control of the amount that will have to be spent. There is no guarantee that the latest figure of £73bn will not go up like all previous estimates have. Leigh said: “[This] leads me to think you are not in control of what is going on. There is no credence to be given to any of these figures.”
Public Servant Daily 26th Feb 2008 more >>
The government has signed up to a U.S.-sponsored club of countries that want to see more nuclear power plants built globally while keeping atomic weapons in the hands of a few. Britain became the 21st member of the Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP), which aims to keep a firm grip on technologies that can be used to make nuclear weapons, when UK industry minister John Hutton signed up on Tuesday.
Reuters 26th Feb 2008 more >>
eGov Monitor 26th Feb 2008 more >>
As the New York Philharmonic played The Star-Spangled Banner in a North Korean concert hall, Condoleezza Rice struck a conciliatory note in Beijing, expressing hope that China could persuade its recalcitrant communist neighbour to resume nuclear disarmament talks.
Times 27th Feb 2008 more >>
The senior US official responsible for handling the dispute over Iran’s nuclear programme has admitted that the Bush administration is unlikely to resolve the issue, which until recently was seen as a possible cause of military confrontation between Washington and Tehran.
FT 27th Feb 2008 more >>
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has hailed Iran’s “great victory” over its nuclear programme.
BBC 26th Feb 2008 more >>
The point that Mr ElBaradei’s critics miss is that he is judiciously achieving the goals that they seemingly desire – the disarmament of the Islamic Republic. The IAEA process, particularly the adoption last year of a “work plan” to investigate suspect activities, has been criticised by many Americans. The latest report shows, however, that process is working. The investigation and inspections – even the limited ones the IAEA is currently able to conduct – have, in effect, shut down direct weapons work and resolved many of the outstanding historical questions.
FT 27th Feb 2008 more >>
The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, has urged the US and Russia to reduce their nuclear arsenals drastically. “There is no reason why the two largest nuclear-weapon states cannot slash the number of warheads they hold, without diminishing their security or that of their allies,” the director general of the UN atomic watchdog told a nuclear disarmament conference in Oslo.
Interactive Investor 26th Feb 2008 more >>
Sir John Hill, who has died aged 86, was the leader of the British nuclear industry as chairman of the UK Atomic Energy Authority and of two of its commercial offshoots, British Nuclear Fuels and Amersham International.
Telegraph 27th Feb 2008 more >>