Energy Bill critique by Dieter Helm – serious problems embedded in EMR .
Dieter Helm 27th June 2012 more >>
Letter: Mr Ingham also uses the existence of poor people in the Upper Calder Valley to argue against subsidies for renewable energy as he claims these cost each household an extra £100 per year. However, he supports the governments plans to give subsidies to the nuclear industry via the Contract for Difference which will also lead to an increase in the energy bills for poor people and everyone else!
Hebden Bridge Times 28th June 2012 more >>
The Institute of Directors in Yorkshire is calling for the UK to get off the fence and press ahead with building a new generation of nuclear power stations. But the IoD adds that the Coalition should also consider ways of exploiting Yorkshires coal reserves. The call comes following the publication of an IoD study, which shows that nuclear power remains extremely popular among business leaders, despite the nuclear disaster caused when an earthquake and tsunami hit Japan in March last year.
Sheffield Star 28th June 2012 more >>
GDF Suez is expected to significantly trim its 47-year old nuclear business now that its only showroom, Belgium, is gradually wrapping up its reliance on the energy form and with nuclear prospects in the French utility’s home market dimming. GDF Suez will reveal its new nuclear strategy this summer after the new Belgian government says in July the pace at which it will cut its reliance on nuclear energy, a source that secured 57 percent of the country’s electricity supply in 2011. “If you are being challenged on your operating nuclear base, like the German utilities have been, you will try to keep as long as possible your existing nuclear plants and possibly build abroad but if you can’t do that, than you give up on nuclear like E.ON and RWE have done,” said one sector specialist who declined to be named. GDF Suez’s nuclear buck stops with a plan to develop a new nuclear plant in Britain with Nugen joint-venture partner Iberdrola but a final decision will be taken in 2015 as the government’s nuclear energy policy is still shaping up.
Reuters 28th June 2012 more >>
ENVIRONMENT campaigners have claimed that some of the most beautiful valleys in the Western Lakes could be a potential final resting place for highly active radioactive waste. They point to Wasdale, Eskdale, Ennerdale & Kinniside, and Muncaster as possible locations for a nuclear waste repository up to four times the size of Sellafield and as big as the Channel Tunnel. But yesterday Coun Tim Knowles, who heads up West Cumbrias Managing Radioactive Waste Safety Partnership, strongly rebutted any suggestion that specific sites had been identified, and he rejected suggestions by Save Our Lake District Dont Dump Cumbria that Longlands Farm at Gosforth has already been ruled out.
Whitehaven News 28th June 2012 more >>
Letter Tim Knowles: Your article in last weeks paper was wrong to suggest that a university think tank has criticised the poll conducted by Ipsos MORI on behalf of the West Cumbria Managing Radioactive Waste Safely Partnership. The views in the article were those of an individual who is a geologist, not a polling expert, and he was speaking in a personal capacity. He is entitled to comment on the poll, as is any other member of the public. We have always made it clear that the views of local people are of paramount importance in deciding whether the area should take part in further geological and other investigations to see if there is anywhere that is suitable for an underground nuclear waste repository. We commissioned one of the countrys leading polling companies to carry out the opinion survey and two independent experts to give their views on the way the survey was conducted and the questions that were being asked.
Whitehaven News 28th June 2012 more >>
Letter IPSOS MORI: I am writing to clarify a number of the claims made by the geologist in your article N-waste opinion poll criticised on June 21. He claims that the results presented have cherry picked the two pieces of information most favourable. This is certainly not the case. The questionnaire for this survey included three opinion questions, plus three screening questions (to ensure we were talking to a representative sample of adults in Cumbria) and seven demographic questions (for analysis purposes). A copy of the questionnaire used is available on the Partnerships website (Doc 251 at http://www.westcumbriamrws. org.uk/all_documents.asp).
Whitehaven News 28th June 2012 more >>
Letter: Having read P Wilsons latest letter on the waste repository issue (Letters, June 14), I am appalled since, quite clearly, he has access to information that has been carefully and deliberately withheld from the general public. And, in such circumstances, quite how we can possibly come to an informed opinion on that issue is completely beyond me. From his letter, it seems that all of the various design studies for that repository have been based on the presumption that it would be flooded, and eventually filled by ground-water. And if repeat, if that is so, then the so-called public consultation exercise that MRWS has been pushing so assiduously is and always was nothing more than an empty pretence. A total sham.
Whitehaven News 28th June 2012 more >>
HOPES for Dungeness C “are not dead”, 200 Marsh residents were told at a meeting at which the district council was criticised over the nuclear waste centre plans. People packed the Marsh Academy on Thursday to discuss the area’s economic future, including updates on the potential for a third power station and Shepway District Council’s £40,000 consultation into whether the Marsh should host a national radioactive waste facility. While MP Damian Collins, county councillor Carole Waters and Kent County Council leader Paul Carter were united in their opposition to the waste centre, SDC councillor Russell Tillson found himself the focus of residents’ objections to the “dump” despite his insisting the council did not have a formal view on it. Ross Carter, of the local Green party, told the Herald afterwards: “I almost felt sorry for the hapless Shepway councillor who was given the task of trying to justify the indefensible position SDC has taken.”
Romney Marsh Herald 28th June 2012 more >>
A nuclear war of words has broken out over research which says Government policy to promote nuclear power plants could boost the UK economy by more than £5billion a year. Figures from the Institute for Public Policy Research also suggest that rebuilding new nuclear energy capacity in the UK could create more than 32,000 additional jobs while giving a significant boost to annual exports. But campaign group Stop Hinkley said yesterday that the claimed economic benefit would be cancelled out by Government subsidies. The IPPR research was commissioned by EDF energy which has plans to build new nuclear plants at Hinkley Point in Somerset and Sizewell in Suffolk, with a combined capacity of 6.4 GW, sufficient to power ten million homes.
Western Daily Press 28th June 2012 more >>
A report from the National Assemblys Environment and Sustainability Committee in Wales surprisingly backs the Governments nuclear policy at Wylfa B on Anglesey, though some members did vote against. The report agrees that there needs to be a bigger mix of energy sources in order to keep up with demand.
e-Gov Monitor 28th June 2012 more >>
FIRST Minister Carwyn Jones yesterday said Welsh independence would mean no Wylfa B as the row over his offer of a home to Britains nuclear submarine fleet rumbled on.
Daily Post 29th June 2012 more >>
Caroline Flint will meet management and unions only three weeks after the news that Thorp will close in six years time throwing doubts over 800 jobs directly linked to the oxide reprocessing plant. On what is described as a private visit, she is keen to talk over various issues, listen to union concerns about future job security and the workforces hopes for a second Mox recycling plant which would absorb any employment losses and create new jobs.
Whitehaven News 28th May 2012 more >>
THE UKs National Nuclear Lab has clinched another lucrative order to help Sellafield get rid of one of its major potential hazards. The multi-million pound contract is linked to cleaning up the pile fuel storage pond which is in the open air and which contains various radioactive fuel dating back to the 60s. Decommissioning the pond is said to represent one of the biggest challenges in cleaning up the sites old facilities and eliminating hazard. Removing the first oxide fuel signals the start of an 18-month programme which will see the rest of the material moved for re-packing into modern container vessels. Most of it comes from the Windscale Advanced Gas Cooled Reactors known locally as the golf ball and was put into the pond between 1963 and 1972. The National Lab has landed the major job of examining the fuel and re-packing into modern containers before being transferred to Thorp for reprocessing.
Whitehaven News 28th June 2012 more >>
AMEC has completed the acquisition of Serco’s North West-based nuclear operation for £137m.The two companies announced last month they were in talks over a potential deal for the £70m turnover Technical Services unit, which has its HQ at Risley, Warrington and provides consulting and project solutions primarily to the UK civil and defence nuclear markets.The unit generated ebitda of £13m last year and has around 600 staff at a number of sites around the country. Customers include the Ministry of Defence, EDF, Magnox Electric.
Business Desk 29th June 2012 more >>
Scotland & Germany
Energy Minister Fergus Ewing will today meet with politicians from one of Germanys major Federal States to discuss shared interests and opportunities in the growing domestic and international low carbon economy. On the final day of his three-day visit to Germany, Mr Ewing will meet with Franz Untersteller MP, Minister for Environment, Climate and Energy, Baden-Württemberg State Government, and Ulrich Müller MP and Alfred Winkler MP, the Convener and Deputy Convener of the Environment, Climate and Energy Committee at the State Parliament of Baden-Württemberg, in Stuttgart. Mr Ewing will discuss the similarities between the energy policy and ambition of Scotland, Baden-Württemberg and Grmany at national level, and the shared emphasis on the importance of renewables playing an increasing role in energy security and supply. Germany is implementing the strategic phase out of nuclear power generation by 2022, a process that has been brought forward by 13 years from the original target of 2035. As a result, Germany is putting a much greater emphasis on renewable energy generation, and has a target to double renewables generation from around 17 per cent at present to 35 per cent by 2020, rising to 86 per cent by 2050.
Scottish Government 28th June 2012 more >>
The Scottish Government plans for low carbon homes will provide more than £2 billion to help make the nation’s homes more energy efficient. The investment will be delivered over the next ten years in a national programme that will transform aging houses. The measures are outlined in the Sustainable Housing Strategy, a blueprint for reduced heating costs and improved efficiency in homes across Scotland. It is linked to the consultation on the Energy Efficiency Standard for Social Housing which proposes setting a minimum energy efficiency rating to be met by social landlords. Launching the consultations in Glasgow after visiting Cube Housing Associations new Energy Centre delivering heat to housing in the Wyndford estate in Maryhill, Mr Neil said Scotland’s housing stock is responsible for more than a quarter of our carbon emissions, which is why it is essential that measures are put in place to improve the energy efficiency of our homes. Elizabeth Leighton of the Existing Homes Alliance Scotland said: “We very much welcome the launch of this important consultation. The Exisiting Homes Alliance believes that improving the condition of our existing housing stock is crucial if targets to eradicate fuel poverty and reduce carbon emissions are to be met. It is essential that the Sustainable Housing Strategy sets a clear direction for the improvement of Scotlands housing stock over the coming decade and beyond. As such we would encourage all of those with an interest to get involved in shaping the final strategy by engaging in the consultation process.”
Scottish Government 25th June 2012 more >>
Five years from now, the UAE is expected to become the first Arab nation to produce nuclear energy, which will generate nearly a quarter of its electricity by 2020. Its training programmes have impressive benefits luring a competitive programme for its next generation of nuclear engineers. The United Arab Emirates four nuclear energy reactors at Braka are set to come online in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 respectively. This leaves Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) a government-owned entity charged with implementing the UAEs civil nuclear energy program with less than five years to train and recruit an entire team of operators, engineers and scientists. How feasible will this be?
Nuclear Energy Insider 27th June 2012 more >>
The EDF Group said June 28 it is committed to implementing post-Fukushima safety enhancements at its French nuclear plants to meet the recommendations of the French nuclear safety authority, Autorité de Sûreté Nucléaire (ASN). A spokeswoman for EDF declined to provide a figure on EDFs investment in post-Fukushima enhancements, although published reports have put the figure at around 10 billion extended over a decade or more. The work, both on EDFs existing plants and plants currently under construction, is intended to increase robustness as well as to guarantee additional safety margins for the facilities to deal with the risks associated with earthquakes and floods; the simultaneous loss of the cooling source and the electricity supply, and the consequences of serious accidents, the company said in a statement.
i-Nuclear 28th June 2012 more >>
Electricite de France SA, operator of the countrys 58 nuclear reactors, has six years to complete about 10 billion euros ($12 billion) of measures to boost safety after Japans Fukushima disaster, the regulator said. Autorite de Surete Nucleaire today published deadlines for employing equipment such as diesel generators, bunkered control rooms, and guards against flooding. An estimate by state-owned EDF that the measures will cost about 10 billion euros is not improbable, Andre-Claude Lacoste, head of the watchdog, told reporters today.
Bloomberg 28th June 2012 more >>
The Japanese government has ordered that a reactor at the Oi nuclear power plant be reactivated on Sunday, defying widespread public opposition and warnings from seismologists about active fault lines close to the facility.
Telegraph 28th June 2012 more >>
CARMARTHEN East and Dinefwr AM Rhodri Glyn Thomas has attacked the First Minister for suggesting Britain’s nuclear submarine fleet would be welcome in Milford Haven, should Scotland become independent. Mr Thomas said: “I have received information from the Port Authority which states categorically that it has had not been involved in any discussions regarding the location of the nuclear submarine fleet to Wales. “It is therefore remarkable for the First Minister to make such an absurd comment to warmly welcome Trident. His remarks are clearly unsubstantiated and have no basis of reality. “The fact the Port Authority itself has not been consulted suggests that no other assessments whatsoever has been undertaken by the Welsh Government.
South Wales Evening Post 29th June 2012 more >>
A Princeton University scientist by the name of Lyman Spitzer Jr. founded a laboratory where he designed a new machine which could harness the vast energy levels released in fusion reactions. Sptizer called his invention the stellerator, and dreamed that it could one day power tens of thousands of homes. Now, 60 years later, scientists working on the stellerator in Spitzers laboratory are worried that, whilst China, South Korea, Japan, and Europe are increasing investment in nuclear fusion research, the US are reducing investment and backing away from the field and the potential of Spitzers dream.
Oil Price 28th June 2012 more >>
The government must give up its “dash for gas” in order to save money for hard-pressed households and avoid dangerous levels of greenhouse gas emissions, according to the committee charged with advising ministers on climate change. Going for gas rather than lower carbon alternatives such as renewable energy could result in costs of £25bn by the 2020s, a charge that would be paid by energy bill payers, according to the Commiittee on Climate Change. Ministers have strongly supported a large increase in the number of gas-fired power stations in the UK as a way of keeping the lights on while cutting greenhouse gas emissions. But the massive programme of construction envisaged could put climate targets under threat if new gas-fired power plants displace lower carbon alternatives such as wind farms and nuclear reactors. Ed Davey, the energy and climate change secretary, joined with the chancellor George Osborne earlier this year in calling for a big increase in gas-fired power generation, despite warnings that the rising cost of gas has been the biggest factor in energy price rises for consumers.
Guardian 29th June 2012 more >>
A controversial technique used to extract shale gas is not risk-free, but can be managed effectively with robust regulations and monitoring, a team of scientists will say today. Joint work between the Royal Society and Royal Academy examining the risks of hydraulic fracturing, popularly known as “fracking”, concludes the practice could be undertaken safely, albeit with a significant number of caveats.
Business Green 29th June 2012 more >>
Renewable energy generation during the first quarter of the year hit record levels, providing more than 11 per cent of electricity generation as output from wind farms, hydro-electric plants, and solar panels all soared.
Business Green 28th June 2012 more >>