Lauvergeon put Areva’s engineers to work on a bold new technology called the Evolutionary Pressurized Reactor. The EPR is super-powerful, fuel-efficient, and loaded with safety features such as a reinforced concrete shell designed, post-September 11, to withstand a direct hit by a jumbo jet. Now the 50-year-old CEO is rolling out the EPR just as the nuclear industry awakens from its slumber. Worldwide, hundreds of reactors are being planned and 53 are being built, three of them EPRs. On Feb. 16, President Obama awarded the first of an expected $54 billion in federal loan guarantees to help U.S. utilities build a new generation of nuclear plants.
Business Week 4th Mar 2010 more >>
National Policy Statements
The government is facing renewed calls to answer concerns on its nuclear national policy statement (NPS) consultation, after flaws in the process were uncovered. Colchester Borough Council has opposed nuclear proposals at Bradwell, advising that the plans will “arouse a great deal of local interest, discussion and even controversy”.
Planning 5th Mar 2010 more >>
People living in Allerdale can find out how they might be affected if proposals to site an underground radioactive waste facility in the area come to fruition. The West Cumbria Managing Radioactive Waste Safely (MRWS) Partnership has been set up to advise councils on whether the area should go through to the next stage in discussing with the Government the possibility of putting a disposal facility somewhere in west Cumbria. A meeting will take place on Tuesday where members of the partnership will explain what is happening and offer residents a chance to ask questions.
Carlisle News and Star 4th Mar 2010 more >>
MOVES are under way to complete the arrangements for the operation of the first common good fund run by the operators of Dounreay. The £4 million fund, expected to go live in spring 2011, is being financed by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and covers the site’s travel-to-work area. It is a community benefit spin-off from the new dump being built for low-level waste created at Dounreay and the neighbouring MoD site at Vulcan. A total of £1m is due to become available when work starts on the new dump – currently scheduled for April 2011.
John O Groat Journal 3rd Mar 2010 more >>
Nuclear new-build developers called on the government to set up a mechanism to support the carbon price, saying that without such a mechanism all low-carbon investment was at risk. EDF Energy’s Humphrey Cadoux-Hudson, who aims to be the first developer to bring new nuclear online, said of the EU’s emissions trading scheme, which is designed to produce a carbon price, that it was “not possible to leave some things at the mercy of a poorly-defined market”. He said, “With the carbon price so low the signal for low-carbon energy investment is compromised. Now is the time to act”, adding that EDF’s preferred solution was a carbon price floor. He said he could, “See no reason why the government should not act unilaterally”. Alan Raymant, chief executive of Horizon, a joint venture of RWE and Eon that aims to build nuclear reactors at Oldbury and Wylfa, agreed.
Utility Week 4th Mar 2010 more >>
A new power plant in Lancashire would create 9,000 jobs, it was revealed today. But the scheme at Heysham will be subjected to a public inquiry if the Conservative Party wins the next General Election.
Lancashire Evening Post 4th Mar 2010 more >>
Planning chiefs at South Gloucestershire Council have said they want to see the new homes built by 2026 as part of the authority’s Core Strategy. The strategy also acknowledges the potential impact on the area of a possible 6,000 strong construction workforce, should a new nuclear power station at Oldbury be given the go-ahead. However, the document makes no provision for any additional housing that might be needed.
Gloucestershire Gazette 4th Mar 2010 more >>
Hybrid nuclear fusion combines the two forms of nuclear power, fission and fusion, in a single reactor. This has several advantages over fission alone: it minimises the environmental impact, reduces risks, enlarges reserves of nuclear fuel and is more flexible to operate.
New Scientist 4th Mar 2010 more >>
Two of Britain’s largest engineering and defence contractors locked horns in a merger battle today after weeks of skirmishes that have encouraged investors in both groups to consider backing a combined firm to rival BAE Systems.
Guardian 5th Mar 2010 more >>
Almost half of Americans are in favour of new nuclear power plants being built in the USA, but the majority said they are concerned about radioactive waste management, plant safety and nuclear material falling into the wrong hands, a new public opinion poll shows.
World Nuclear News 4th Mar 2010 more >>
IT SEEMS obvious: if you’re planning a new generation of nuclear power stations, you should invest in the most advanced and efficient designs available. Yet that’s not what seems to be happening in the US. Westinghouse AP1000 light water reactors differ only slightly from plants built by the US in the 1970s, yet they have problems of their own, notably questions about whether they can withstand severe hurricanes and earthquakes. The UK is looking to similar light water reactors for its own nuclear expansion.
New Scientist 4th Mar 2010 more >>
Japan’s Monju Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (FBR, 280MWe) is scheduled to restart by the end of the 2009 fiscal year (March 31, 2010). If it does so, it will be the first time the plant has operated since it was shut down as a result of a sodium leak and fire fourteen years ago. This article reviews the history and current status of Monju and Japan’s FBR program.
CNIC 5th Mar 2010 more >>
A senior diplomat from China, the biggest benefactor for destitute North Korea, said on Friday that Beijing wanted long-stalled international talks on ending Pyongyang’s atomic ambitions to restart by July. North Korea’s top nuclear envoy is trying to enter the United States in the next few days for a visit that could add new life to disarmament-for-aid talks which have been on hold for more than a year.
Interactive Investor 5th Mar 2010 more >>
China has rebuffed efforts by Western powers to impose a new set of sanctions against Tehran. Beijing said it would continue to push for a diplomatic resolution to the stand-off over Iran’s civil nuclear energy programme.
Morning Star 4th Mar 2010 more >>
Statkraft, the Norwegian utility giant, which is developing the UK’s biggest wind farm with RWE npower and SSE, confirmed that it was no longer wanted to invest in Britain’s marine energy sector. Industry sources said there were deep concerns about the economic viability of planned marine projects, despite the Government’s desire to increase wave and tidal electricity from the current 3 megawatts to 2,000 megawatts in the next 10 years.
Telegraph 5th Mar 2010 more >>
The renewable power industry has warned that it needs 500m from the government over the next two years if it is to help ministers meet energy and climate change targets. More than half of the cash is for offshore wind power generation, while another part is required if wind and tidal power is to move from experimental to commercial application, the industry said in a budget submission out tomorrow . The call for a large injection of public cash was made by RenewableUK, the lobby group previously known as the British Wind Energy Association, in a presentation to the energy minister, David Kidney.
Guardian 5th Mar 2010 more >>