A new inquiry instigated by the French government into the international activities of the French nuclear industry poses a new challenge to the UK’s plans for a new nuclear. Further delay in reaching a final decision seems certain. The formal inquiry will be undertaken by the powerful Inspection Generale des Finances. The inquiry is sector wide and focused on potentially inappropriate transfers of protected technologies through the international partnerships developed by the nuclear companies. The inquiry is directed specifically at EDF and its relationships in China and threatens to disrupt the company’s decision making process for months to come. The inquiry also adds to the uncertainty surrounding Britain’s plans for a new generation of nuclear stations, which are on hold pending agreement between the UK government and EDF on the pricing structure and financing arrangements. It will no doubt deeply offend the Chinese government and make impossible any revival of the proposed links with the Guangdong Nuclear Power or the Three Gorges company, which would have given the Chinese businesses a stake, and perhaps an operating role, in the new UK stations. The chances of such an arrangement has faded away over recent months. The added uncertainty will make it more difficult for EDF to secure external financing for the UK plants. Without some new source of finance it is difficult to see how the project can proceed.
FT 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Natalie Bennett: For Britain’s environment, clearly the most important resolution is to restructure the government’s energy bill to put energy conservation at its heart, to restore the target of decarbonising electricity by 2030 and to follow most of the developed world in drawing a final line underneath the failed decades of expensive nuclear power.
Guardian 3rd Jan 2013 more »
Stage 1 of the Sizewell C consultation process began on Wednesday 21 November 2012 and runs until 6 February 2013. EDF Energy arranged a number of public exhibitions during November and December, which have now all taken place. EDF energy has created a special Sizewell C website which gives details of its proposals.
Suffolk Coastal (accessed) 2nd Jan 2013 more »
A video which explains the Ecology and Geology of Ennerdale, part of the Lake District National park (UK), and the impact of siting a Radioactive Nuclear Waste Facility on the Environment.
Noend 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Petition: No Nuclear Dump in the Lake District.
38 Degress (accessed) 3rd Jan 2013 more »
THE SNP really needs to sort out its energy policy if the contrasting messages issued by the leadership yesterday are a measure of what to expect in the year ahead. Energy spokesman Mike Weir and his boss Alex Salmond ought to have compared notes. Weir was cheered by a report supporting the view that focusing on renewables will mean cheaper fuel bills than relying on other forms of energy. The First Minister, in a new year message for the oil and gas industry, talked up the vital contribution the North Sea makes to the economy. Cake and eating it, sprung to mind.
Scotsman 3rd Jan 2012 more »
Japan appears to be heading toward a gradual revival of nuclear power generation under a new government supportive of retaining it, but the outlook for the industry in 2013 is unclear, with antinuclear sentiment still lingering among the public amid the disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 atomic plant. But the nuclear industry is not necessarily optimistic about its prospects due to the huge impact the Fukushima crisis has had on the public. In addition to such a harsh climate of public opinion about atomic power, utilities may also face more headwinds now that the NRA is gearing up to assess the safety of reactors in the quake-prone country. Recently, the NRA has suggested it will be tough with utilities, warning that geological faults under two plants are likely to be active, assessments that will significantly affect the prospects for restarting the two plants’ reactors.
Japan Times 3rd Jan 2012 more »
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Areva are planning a joint bid to build the Atmea 1 generation III+ pressurized water reactor in Turkey. The county is soliciting international companies to build reactors at its Sinop site, which will be the second nuclear power complex built in Turkey. Quoting a Turkish government official, Nikkei recently reported that the Japanese-French consortium will pursue the opportunity. The companies have previously sold reactors in Jordan. Kepco, Candu, Rosatom and Chinese firms were also among the companies expressing interest in the project, according to the World Nuclear Association. Rosatom in 2010 was confirmed as the company that will build and operate four AES-2006 reactors at Akkuyu, which will be Turkey’s first nuclear plant. Construction there is scheduled to begin this year while the Turkish government and state utility EUAS continue negotiations for 5,600 megawatts of additional nuclear generation at Sinop on the Black Sea.
Nuclear Street 1st Jan 2013 more »
South Korea resumed operations at the Younggwang 6 reactor after the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission (NSSC) approved its restart. The nuclear reactor was shut down in early December 2012 for an emergency safety check following reports that many substandard parts were used under fake warranties in at least two reactors. The NSSC earlier informed that a total of 13,794 substandard parts were supplied to the Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power for the past decade. In addition, the safety commission noted that nearly 6,500 of them had actually been used in Younggwang 5 & 6 reactors. The Nuclear Safety and Security Commission was quoted by Yonhap news agency as saying that, “All the parts that had been supplied under fake warranties have been replaced and all safety checks needed for a restart of the reactors have been completed.”
Energy Business Review 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Management of used nuclear fuel in Finland has reached a milestone with the application by Posiva to construct a final repository and waste encapsulation plant at Olkiluoto. Leading the project is Posiva, a waste management specialist jointly owned by Finnish nuclear utilities Fortum and TVO. It submitted the application to the Ministry of Employment and the Economy on 28 December with the aim of permanently storing the used nuclear fuel from its owners’ nuclear power plants. The application covers the construction of the encapsulation plant and repository, as well as for facilities for the final disposal of waste created during the operation and decommissioning of the encapsulation plant.
World Nuclear News 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Nucnet 31st Dec 2013 more »
India currently has 20 nuclear reactors, of which 19 are in operation, and approval has been given for the construction of six more — with a combined capacity of 9,900MW — at Jaitapur in the west coast state of Maharashtra (in partnership with France-based Areva).
Machinery Market 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Iran hopes talks with six major powers about its atomic programme will begin very soon, the country’s top nuclear negotiator said on Wednesday during a trip to India. Last week, Russian media said the six world powers – the United States, Russia, France, Britain, Germany and China – were still negotiating with the Islamic Republic on a possible date and venue for the talks.
Trust 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Construction has begun on unit 3 of the Russian-designed Tianwan nuclear power plant in China’s Jiangsu province. First concrete pouring began on 27 December. It came eighteen days after the project was given the go-ahead by state authorities. Atomstroyexport JSC will construct units 3&4 of Tianwan nuclear power station. They will be analogous to those of the first phase: two VVER-1000 reactor plants, each of 1060 MW electric capacity. Jiangsu Nuclear Power Corporation (JNPC) will design and deliver the balance-of-plant equipment. The first unit is expected to start up in 2018, according to Rosatom.
Nuclear Engineering International 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Billionaire US investor Warren Buffett is taking a $2.5bn (£1.5bn) bet on solar energy, acquiring what is set to become the largest photovoltaic development in the world.
Telegraph 2nd Jan 2013 more »
Six million households face a shock next month when an average fuel bill of Â£530 pops through the letterbox, analysts warned today. The bill – the biggest ever single payment demanded by the energy giants – will hit those customers who pay for their gas and electricity quarterly. An estimated 6.5 million households have already been left in fuel poverty this winter because of near-8 per cent hikes increasing the average annual bill to Â£1,343. An analysis by Moneysupermarket.com showed that 39.4 per cent of a household’s annual consumption of gas and electricity falls within just three months, between 13 November and 15 February. As a result, the website calculated that the bill for those months would hit Â£530 – Â£50 more than last year.
Independent 2nd Jan 2013 more »