Claims that nuclear power is a ‘low carbon’ energy source fall apart under scrutiny, writes Keith Barnham. Far from coming in at six grams of CO2 per unit of electricity for Hinkley C, as the Climate Change Committee believes, the true figure is probably well above 50 grams – breaching the CCC’s recommended limit for new sources of power generation beyond 2030.
Ecologist 5th Feb 2015 read more »
Counterpunch 5th Feb 2015 read more »
AN emergency evacuation of people on and around the Sellafield site would be hampered by an A595 that is “not fit for purpose”.THE revised area covers Seascale, Gosforth, Thornhill, Beckermet and other smaller towns and villages. It includes: That’s the stark warning given by a number of concerned local people, ahead of the emergency zone around the nuclear site being trebled in size. The Office for Nuclear Regulations – which oversees the nuclear industry – has ruled that the impact zone in the event of a radiation emergency must be increased from 2km to between 6km and 7km. Cumbria County Council must now produce an off-site emergency plan – including evacuation policy – to reflect this.
Whitehaven News 5th Feb 2015 read more »
2015 could be the year in which Europe fundamentally changes the way it thinks energy and climate policy. In a new discussion paper from E3G and our partners Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and the European Climate Foundation, we explain why the Energy Union is a unique defining political moment for Europe. In it, we set out six core principles to deliver a secure, competitive and decarbonised energy system, summarised here.
E3G 4th Feb 2015 read more »
The Energy Policy Group recently attended a hearing on the CMA Energy Market Investigation. We started the hearing with a prepared opening statement: Thank you for inviting us to this hearing. We are not economists. Our research focuses on innovation and a more ‘whole system’ approach to how energy systems might change from their current configurations to something which is more sustainable while also ensuring affordability and security. It is very important that climate change is addressed. The required reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide will not be achieved overnight, and it is generally accepted that the change in energy systems will be cheaper and more secure if it is carried out strategically and in a managed manner over a period of time rather than doing very little in the short and medium and then rushing to meet our commitments in 2050 towards the end of the period.
IGov 5th Feb 2015 read more »
France’s Areva is drafting a plan to let utility EDF take a stake in some of its units, giving the indebted nuclear group a capital boost and strengthening the link between the two firms, a source familiar with the situation said. The source told Reuters that as part of the new strategy, Areva’s new management will present on March 4, the firm is considering setting up joint ventures with EDF to export nuclear reactors and for the treatment and recycling of nuclear fuel. “This scenario should be a major element of the plan,” the source said, adding there was a growing consensus that Areva’s future will be closely linked to that of EDF. The project would allow EDF to inject capital into Areva, and let Areva share risk and investments with EDF, which accounted for 30 percent of Areva’s sales in 2013.
Reuters 5th Feb 2015 read more »
A nuclear industry firm will create 36 jobs with an expansion in the Deeside Enterprise Zone. James Fisher Nuclear (JFN) has chosen to expand its base in Wales by relocating to larger premises in the Zone. The £1.5m investment in new premises and equipment is supported by £149,200 business finance from the Welsh Government. The expansion will bring the company’s head count up to 100 in Flintshire.
Daily Post 5th Feb 2015 read more »
Rolls-Royce has signed a declaration of intent with Kirloskar Oil Engines (KOEL), the Indian engine and genset manufacturer, for exclusive cooperation on the developing and commissioning of emergency gensets for nuclear power plants in India. Rolls-Royce will be responsible for the supply of MTU engines and key components, besides being responsible for basic engineering and genset configuration.
Energy Business Review 5th Feb 2015 read more »
Workers at Areva in Richland have completed a fuel fabrication and testing project for a prototype reactor being developed by TerraPower in Bellevue. TerraPower, with Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates as board chairman and an investor, is developing a traveling wave reactor. A 600 megawatt-electric reactor is planned to start up around 2022. The sodium-cooled reactor design, which could be scaled up to an 1,150 megawatt-electric plant for commercial use, relies on fuel made from inexpensive depleted uranium. The material is seen as a waste byproduct of uranium enrichment, according to TerraPower. Areva started work in the last half of 2014 and recently finished. Its work did not require the use of uranium, according to Areva, but the Richland plant does manufacture nuclear fuel for more than 30 reactors worldwide.
Tri City Herald 3rd Feb 2015 read more »
Japan’s government is aiming to restart a nuclear reactor by around June following a lengthy and politically-sensitive approval process in the wake of the Fukushima disaster, sources familiar with the plans said. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government has been pushing to bring some of the country’s reactors back online after all 48 closed following meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in March 2011, arguing they are key to economic growth. A reboot in what was once the third-biggest user of nuclear power would boost its utilities, which have been hit by huge losses as they switch to fossil fuels and upgrade nuclear plants, with two turning to the government for bailouts. But the move would be controversial in a nation where most oppose nuclear power, with memories still fresh of the worst atomic crisis since Chernobyl in 1986.
Reuters 6th Feb 2015 read more »
As US-Russian relations continue their long slide, pushed into the deep freeze by the Ukraine conflict, a critical element in that relationship has remained intact. Four years ago, in much more hopeful times, the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) entered into force, after having been signed in Prague by Barack Obama and the then Russian president Dmitry Medvedev. The deal involved a cut in both sides’ arsenal of deployed strategic warheads by a third to a new ceiling of 1550 apiece. Afterwards Obama described Medvedev as a “friend and partner” and Medvedev talked of a “personal chemistry” between the two. It was the one solid achievement of the temporary ‘reset’ of relations between Washington and Moscow.
Guardian 5th Feb 2015 read more »
Was Kirkcaldy singled out to face certain annihilation in the event of a nuclear attack, as declassified government documents suggest? According to Home Office papers, released last week, Kirkcaldy was the only UK borough not to provide nuclear shelter for residents – despite Rosyth dockyards being an obvious target during the Cold War.
Fife Today 5th Feb 2015 read more »
The UK Government has revealed plans to cut its stake in renewables infrastructure fund Greencoat UK Wind, which could see it raise up to £42m. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said that it would sell at least 40m of shares in Greencoat.. The shares will be priced between 103p and 105p each in an accelerated placing that will close by tomorrow.
Telegraph 5th Feb 2015 read more »
Renewables – solar
Scottish support for solar power is on the rise and – according to the Solar Trade Association (STA) – there are now more than double the number of domestic solar installations in Scotland than there are in London, despite the UK capital having more than three million more residents. With growing support for solar on the rise, the UK Department of Energy (DECC) is pushing for greater levels of local and community ownership. In a gesture of support the STA announced that it has revised its influential ‘10 commitments’ to include this.
Scottish Energy News 6th Feb 2015 read more »