Private Eye: In summer 2013 government spin doctors said a deal with the French to build two new nuclear power plants in the UK was in the bag (EYE 1351). It wasn’t. Now the spinners are in action again. This time they are hinting that during the state visit in October of China’s president Xi Jinping, he will commit Chinese money to rescue the endlessly delayed nuclear projects. With his country’s dire record on industrial health and safety , Xi should feel at home in the ramshackle edifice that is much of Britain’s nuclear infrastructure.
Radiation Free Lakeland 29th Aug 2015 read more »
Interview with Dylan Morgan of PAWB.
People Against Wylfa B. 29th Aug 2015 read more »
August 23-25 2015 saw the ‘making’ of a small camp , close to the Wylfa nuclear power station , where a group of activists from many walks of life , joined in ceremonies and talks to ‘twin’ Wylfa with Fukushima . The new proposed Wylfa B power station is of a similar type to the Fukushima Daiichi reactors that melted in 2011 , and is to be built by the same company.
People Against Wylfa B 29th Aug 2015 read more »
Georgia Power reported Friday the cost to build a nuclear plant was holding steady, but there’s significant uncertainty whether those numbers will stick. The Southern Co. subsidiary owns a 46 percent stake in two new reactors under construction at Plant Vogtle, near Augusta. The utility now expects to spend roughly $7.5 billion to finish the project, or about 22 percent more than originally expected. The budget released Friday declined slightly from the company’s last financial filing in February. If they hold, the level spending figures would be welcome news for investors and customers. By law, Georgia Power’s customers will ultimately pay for construction costs unless state regulators object and force losses onto shareholders. However, project watchdogs say multiple problems could still raise costs.
Island Packet 28th Aug 2015 read more »
Kyushu Electric Power Co says the No. 1 reactor at its Sendai plant in Kagoshima Prefecture will begin commercial operation on Sept 10. Earlier this month, Kyushu Electric began the restart of the Sendai plant, the first of Japan’s reactors to begin operation under new safety standards introduced in the wake of the Fukushima disaster in 2011. However, it had to halt the ramp-up of power output from the No. 1 reactor due to a problem with a pump in the plant’s secondary cooling system. The utility said that seawater entered one of the pumps in the secondary cooling system, where steam that turns the turbines to produce electricity is cooled.
Japan Today 30th Aug 2015 read more »
The Chancellor George Osborne is set to make a surprise visit to Faslane Naval Base tomorrow in a move that has antagonised anti-nuclear campaigners and Scottish MPs. Osborne’s controversial trip north of the border has attracted widespread criticism, with CND saying it is ‘disrespectful’ following the revelations of whistle-blower William McNeilly, who broke his silence on fears over the safety of Trident in the Sunday Herald earlier this year. John Ainslie, Coordinator for Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, said: “George Osborne’s presence at Faslane will do nothing to reassure the Scottish public that everything is safe at Britain’s nuclear base. “We know from the revelations of William McNeilly that Trident is a ‘disaster waiting to happen’. The Chancellor is about to commit billions of pounds to renewing Trident, although he knows that Holyrood and 57 of our 59 MPs are against this.
Herald 30th Aug 2015 read more »
Three of the four Labour leadership contenders have called for compensation and recognition for Britain’s nuclear test heroes. Frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn, Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper and Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham all say the 3,000 veterans and their families deserve apologies and a health fund. Only Blairite Liz Kendall – who is trailing last in the leadership race with another three weeks to go – failed to respond to requests from this newspaper to back our long campaign. The veterans, whose children suffer 10 times the normal rate of birth defects, are demanding a £25m benevolent fund for themselves and their families.
Mirror 29th Aug 2015 read more »
Energy has got interesting again. I don’t just mean in our homes, where we should all be searching for a deal that reflects the fall in wholesale gas prices since 2012. A quick look at the switching websites reveals that the Clover household could be saving about 10% of our bill for the past year. This is far less than wholesale gas prices have tumbled, confirming the conclusions of the competition watchdog that the big energy firms are still ripping us off and we consumers should switch more often. Things have got interesting at national policy level, too, where the false assumptions of Labour and Liberal Democrat energy secretaries now stand exposed by the fall in gas prices. Remember, renewables were meant to be saving us money, instead of adding to bills. Despite reflecting the new realities of a world awash with cheap gas, the Conservatives’ energy announcements s ince the election have been slated by the subsidy junkies represented by RenewableUK, to whom green groups tend to cling instead of thinking for themselves. Since being appointed energy and climate change secretary, Amber Rudd has ended new subsidies for onshore wind, parked the Green Deal, ended the zero-carbon homes plan, speeded up rules allowing an expansion of fracking and removed guaranteed subsidy for biomass. Last week she slashed subsidies for solar roofs and farms. She has also said she is committed to signing up to the first truly global deal to limit greenhouse gas emissions in Paris this December. To the greens and the renewable subsidy addicts, though, these things are incompatible. RenewableUK howled: “It’s like saying you want to win the Tour de France on a bike without wheels.” There may indeed be some short-term turmoil as wind and solar adjust (maybe we will see the end of those irritating cold callers) but what is not widely recognised is t hat Rudd wasn’t being mindlessly ideological and most of her decisions were those of any sensible party. The reason is that it has become increasingly clear that while the energy companies are partly responsible for higher bills, the government is also to blame. As the Policy Exchange think tank has pointed out, policy decisions account for half of the average £240 rise in dual-fuel energy bills in the past five years.
Sunday Times 30th Aug 2015 read more »
One week. Two nations. Two dramatically different approaches to enabling people to tap renewable energy in their homes. In the US on Monday, Barack Obama announced a $1 billion programme to increase the number of homes with solar panels. In Britain, three days later, the Government announced plans effectively to close its own existing scheme down. “We are going to make it even easier for individual homeowners to put solar panel on the roof,” the President told the National Clean Energy Summit. “People are beginning to realise that they can take more control over their own energy. So we are taking steps that will allow more America ns to join this revolution, with no money down.” Back in Britain, by contrast, ministers announced that they planned to slash the tariffs paid to homeowners who install rooftop solar panels (already down by 70 per cent since their inception five years ago) by a further 87 per cent, far more than anyone had expected, reducing them almost to zero – despite having announced, shortly after the election, that they wanted to unleash “a new solar revolution”. The Government admits that this will mean than 958,000 houses, schools, and communities ,who could otherwise have afforded to install solar panels, will no longer be able to do so. Experts agreed that there would now be no incentive to exploit the sun and predicted that the solar energy industry, which had been booming and appeared to be approaching breakthrough, would now be gravely imperilled. Over the last year more solar power was installed on UK homes than in any other European country, and has almost reached the level of deployment predicted for 2020, five years ahead of schedule. Ministers are looking increasingly out of step. “From Kenya to Costa Rica the world is reaping the benefits of clean, green solar power,” says Sarah Butler-Sloss, founder director of the Ashden Foundation, a leading authority on renewables. “But here in the UK, the government appears to be trying to shut solar down.” If it succeeds the loss will not be to solar energy; there will be little effect on the worldwide spread of the technology. It will be to British firms and its economy, which will once again miss out on exploiting a rapidly expanding technology, while countries like the US power ahead.
Telegraph 28th Aug 2015 read more »
Renewables – Onshore Wind
A new report has found that onshore wind is the most cost effective and scalable low carbon technology in the UK and should be supported. Published by public policy charity Policy Exchange, the report — Powering Up: The future of onshore wind in the UK — examined the future of onshore wind in the UK and its possible role as one of the major low carbon energy generation options available. According to the report’s findings, the cost of onshore wind is estimated to fall from £85/MWh to approximately £60/MWh by 2020 as larger turbines are introduced into high wind speed areas of the country, like Scotland.
Clean Technica 28th Aug 2015 read more »