Britain faces the prospect of power shortages and soaring prices this winter after the National Grid warned of a shortfall in electricity-generating capacity yesterday. The alert coincides with a surge in gas prices, which are now 40% higher than in continental Europe, and the confirmation that a vital import plant in South Wales will not be operational this winter. And it emerged last night that the energy minister, Malcolm Wicks, met power providers and users last week to discuss mounting concerns that the UK was heading into another winter of soaring prices and power shortages, similar to the one that forced some manufacturers to shut down capacity 24 months ago. The fragility of the country’s power infrastructure is partly the result of a series of breakdowns at the UK’s ageing nuclear reactors.
Guardian 31st Oct 2007 more >>
“Radical reforms” to save £300m every year and cut delays to nuclear power stations and other major infrastructure projects by half will be outlined on Tuesday by local government minister John Healey. Mr Healey will say that the Planning Reform Bill, which will attempt to overhaul the creaking British system of infrastructure planning, will save up to £5bn by 2030.
FT 30th October 2007 more >>
Has India’s ruling Congress party-led government been reduced to a lame duck one after its Communist allies appear to have scuppered a landmark civilian nuclear deal with the US?
BBC 30th Oct 2007 more >>
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said he believes a controversial civilian nuclear deal with the US is not dead, despite being delayed.
BBC 30th Oct 2007 more >>
Iran held fresh talks with Russia on Tuesday, just before Moscow and other major powers discuss possible new U.N. sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear plans.
Reuters 30th Oct 2007 more >>
North Korea agreed Tuesday to accept half of the economic aid it has been promised for disabling its nuclear reactor in energy-related equipment and other materials.
Guardian website 30th Oct 2007 more >>
Italy is beginning to reconsider nuclear power 20 years after a referendum which banned it.
World Nuclear News 30th Oct 2007 more >>
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services has said the growth in electricity demand and higher fossil fuel prices, alongside increasing concerns about climate change and security of supplies, have considerably improved the prospects of nuclear power generation in Europe. “It is still too early to talk about a nuclear revival in the EU, though. Only one plant has so far been commissioned this year, in Romania, while four others are being built and another four are planned,” S&P’s credit analyst Hugues de la Presle said.
Interactive Investor 30th Oct 2007 more >>
British Energy Group has reaffirmed the safety at Hinkley Point B power station after a recent inspection by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate that brought up the issue of core restraints.
Energy Business Review 29th Oct 2007 more >>