The decision to approve the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station application was made on 19 March, and two JRs were launched against it. One was by the Irish equivalent of the National Trust on the ground that Ireland should have been consulted on transboundary effects and the second was by Greenpeace, on an alleged breach of policy on long-term storage of nuclear waste. The two Hinkley Point C claims have both been rolled up (i.e. the arguments as to whether they should be heard have been combined with the hearing itself) and listed for 5-6 December.
Bircham Dyson, Bell 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Workers at the nuclear site in Sellafield are launching a campaign aimed at attracting fresh investment to help guarantee its future. The Government will be urged to support a new nuclear power station in the area and to explore the potential of re-using existing plutonium stocks. Ministers will also be pressed to work with those councils in Cumbria that backed a recent proposal to hold studies into a disposal facility for radioactive waste.
Belfast Telegraph 30th Aug 2013 read more »
York Press 30th Aug 2013 read more »
A new government bill could inadvertently squeeze the life out of the UK’s climate policy debate, charities are warning. The draft law is designed to stop lobbyists unfairly influencing the outcome of the coming election, but risks hitting charities hardest. The bill could mean charities unexpectedly find themselves unable to write reports on parties’ energy policies, conduct polls on which party is best placed to lead on environmental issues, or organise climate change awareness events for 12 months before the election due to a new definition of the term ‘electoral activities’. The new rules could also discourage smaller, community-led charities from taking part in the debate at all.
Carbon Brief 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Letter Colin Wales: I can justifiably blame the government for many things, and do, but Copeland running out of money isn’t one of them. For the record, more than 400 local authorities are having difficulty but they ARE managing. To further suggest, as both Couns Woodburn and Knowles have done, that blame lies with Cumbria County Council for closing down the options to site a Geological Disposal Facility and against the wishes of the majority of Copeland residents is simply wrong. Cumbria County Council gave sound and logical reasons for its decision of January 30, not least the results of the IPSOS Mori poll when contrasted with the overwhelming rejection to proceed from the parish councils and doubts as to suitable geology as exposed by Professors Smythe and Haszeldine. Coun Woodburn, you were invited to attend the presentations on geology I set up with others but you chose not to. Fortunately, many other councillors from both Allerdale and Cumbria did. They at least had the benefit of the geology of West Cumbria explained to them. For the record, Cumbria is one of the most studied geological environments on the whole planet. As Geoff Smith pointed out in letters of the same week, volunteerism, not the long-term geological safety for the nation’s nuclear, is still the preferred government option, this despite other nations ensuring the prospect of good geology is put BEFORE asking for volunteers. No doubt the nuclear industry will say that “engineered barriers” will ensure safety. Of course they will. Oh and by the way save the nuclear industry hundreds of millions of pounds by not having to transport the waste to a safe geological region.
Whitehaven News 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Fossil fuels seldom bother us, so we seldom consider their impact, but fracking forces us to face the uncomfortable reality. Many of those who deny that climate change is taking place reached that position as a result of their opposition to windfarms. This, for example, was the route taken by David Bellamy, who stumbled disastrously into the debate a decade ago.
Guardian 30th Aug 2013 read more »
Government provisional figures released on Thursday showed a 9.3pc jump in gas imports in the first six months of 2013 against the same period of 2012. The period saw renewed attention on the security of Britain’s gas supply, with the gas price spiking in late March when a key import pipeline was temporarily closed and gas storage facilities were almost depleted from the winter. The new figures show that Britain relied on pipelines, primarily from Norway and the Netherlands, for 81pc of its imports, with the remainder shipped to the UK as liquefied natural gas (LNG). The LNG cargoes were overwhelmingly from Qatar, with a handful from Algeria. The growing reliance on imports stems from a drop in domestic gas production from the North Sea as reserves at older fields are used up.
Telegraph 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Gas fired electricity generation fell in 2013 to its lowest first quarter level in 15 years, the latest Department of Energy and Climate Change statistics show. Output was down from 27.1TWh in Q1 2012 to 26.5TWh in Q1 2013, attributed to high wholesale gas prices. Several gas power stations have been closed or mothballed. Coal power was also slightly down, after a bumper 2012 driven by cheap supplies, from 42.1TWh to 41.6TWh. Low carbon generation’s share of the mix was up from 28.4 per cent to 30.4 per cent.
Utility Week 30th Aug 2013 read more »
Entergy Corp, one of the largest nuclear-power producers in the US, issued a surprise press release Tuesday, saying it plans “to close and decommission its Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station in Vernon, Vermont. The station is expected to cease power production after its current fuel cycle and move to safe shutdown in the fourth quarter of 2014.” Although the press release came from the corporation, it was years of people’s protests and state legislative action that forced its closure. At the same time that activists celebrate this key defeat of nuclear power, officials in Japan admitted that radioactive leaks from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear catastrophe are far worse than previously acknowledged.
Guardian 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Rolls-Royce has secured a contract worth $13.7m for replacing the plant process computers (PPC) for the two generating units at Luminant’s Comanche Peak nuclear power plant in Texas. Under the contract, Rolls-Royce will replace the ageing PPC on both units of Comanche Peak and also the PPC training system located within its full scope training simulator. The Comanche Peak nuclear plant, located near Glen Rose, Texas, comprises two pressurized water reactors with a combined generating capacity of 2,300MW.
Energy Business Review 30th Aug 2013 read more »
The International Atomic Energy Agency said on Wednesday that Japan should stop sending “confusing messages” about the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. They urge the government to explain why they suddenly decided to raise the nuclear warning level at the plant when other incidents since March 2011 have not merited such action.
Japan Today 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Will Fukushima now officially be referred to as worst nuclear disaster in world history? Study estimates Japan plant released 100 quadrillion becquerels (PBq) of cesium into atmosphere… In a single day.
Energy News 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) continued conducting sloppy oversight of tanks containing highly radioactive water at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant even after advice was offered by the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s secretariat from around a year ago, it has been learned. Had TEPCO improved its oversight according to the secretariat’s advice, it may have been able to reduce the severity of the massive leak of contaminated water at the plant.
Mainichi 29th Aug 2013 read more »
Market researchers at Ecofys have taken a look at the need for the German grid to be expanded and find that a greater focus on distributed generation would also do the trick. The findings are in line with a recent study by Agora, and Ecofys says that their findings are applicable to other countries as well.
Renewables International 30th Aug 2013 read more »