British Energy has applied for permission to reopen Hinkley B nuclear power station in Somerset, after six months of repair work. The station was closed in September last year for repairs to cracked pipes in the boiler system.
BBC 5th March 2007
British Energy has received a good response to its recent invitation for partners to help build new nuclear plants, Chief Executive Bill Coley said on Monday. The nuclear power company is also on track with repair work at its Hunterston and Hinkley power stations, which it said last month would be completed by the end of March or early April.
Reuters 5th March 2007
The new round of hand-wringing and saber-rattling about Iran’s nascent but worrisome nuclear program comes just a few weeks after the Bush administration announced its new budget, which included billions for nuclear weapons development.
Report Iran 6th March 2007
U.S. and North Korean officials started talks on Monday aimed at eventually normalizing diplomatic ties as part of an agreement under which Pyongyang has pledged to scrap its nuclear arms programs in exchange for aid.
Reuters 5th March 2007
BBC 5th March 2007
Scottish & Southern Energy (SSE), one of only a handful of independent British utility firms remaining, could be targeted by E.ON because the German power giant’s plans to buy Spain’s Endesa for €41bn (£28bn) are close to collapse.
Independent on Sunday 4th March 2007
Times 6th March 2007
Letter: Lib Dems have decided to support is a reduction in the UK weapons stockpile by 20 per cent, thus reducing the weapons capability from several thousand times the equivalent of the Hiroshima to a “bit less than that”. They have also postponed any decision about the renewal of the Trident weapons system until some time in the next parliament.
Scotsman 6th March 2007
The US has selected the design for a controversial new nuclear warhead to replace the Cold War era weapons currently deployed in its submarines.
New Scientist 5th March 2007
A personal appeal by Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell has helped him win a narrow victory over Trident rebels at his party’s spring conference. Sir Menzies appeared on stage to defend his policy of delaying a decision on replacing Britain’s nuclear weapons. Opponents, including some of his own MPs, wanted Trident to be scrapped when it reaches the end of its life.
BBC 3rd March 2007
Councillor Philip Booth article on how to tackle Climate Change: Let’s stop the £12 billion road building programme, end aviation’s annual £9 billion tax break, end subsidies to the oil industry, and build peace and save £78 billion by not replacing Trident.
Western Daily Press 27th Feb 2007
Letter from David Olivier (an expert on superinsulated houses): Those who confine the green debate to wind and nuclear are ignoring the fact that only 10 per cent of our delivered energy is needed as electricity. The rest is needed as heat or transport fuel. We don’t actually need or want electricity for that; we need heat and we need storable fuel. Another fundamental truth is that all future energy sources, whether renewable or nuclear, will be far more expensive than oil or gas, which in many places gush out of the ground for 10 cents to $10 a barrel. I am amazed at the lack of mention of energy efficiency, since this costs far less than either wind or nuclear (or indeed most other renewables). The cost of investing in renewables (or nuclear), without first reducing demand via lavish attention to energy efficiency, could be prohibitive, energy-efficient buildings, energy-efficient cars – the lot. One example: the UK throws away more heat from its power stations than the amount of gas which it uses to heat the whole domestic sector. Countries such as Denmark, pipe waste heat to every house in a town; the UK builds cooling towers. The nuclear lobby is an unhelpful distraction to the real work which needs to be done, to focus on investing in more efficient energy use.
Independent 23rd Feb 2007
HIGH in the Basque hills stand Spanish energy group Iberdrola’s towering white windpower obelisks, blades whirling almost silently like hovering birds. But money rather than aesthetics is the driving force behind the rapid expansion of the windfarm business of the group, which is expected to complete its acquisition of ScottishPower at the end of April. In its results this week, Iberdrola consolidated its world leadership in the wind energy sector, with an operational renewable capacity of 4,434 megawatts – 10 per cent of it abroad. Iberdrola supplies 60,000 people in the region fanning out from Bilbao with electricity from its windfarms. That is 20 per cent of the population, and the group insists it is not pylons-in-the-sky to think it can meet the demand of the Basque energy authorities to increase this to 60 per cent coverage by 2010. While it is far from the only reason for the planned £11.8 billion takeover of ScottishPower, the Scottish group’s windfarm activities – the bulk of which are in its PPM energy subsidiary in the US – are bound to benefit from added investment from its new parent if the deal goes through as expected. That deal has got regulatory clearance in Brussels and the US; it now only needs shareholder approval in Spain on 20 March and at an EGM in Scotland on 30 March. From conventional electricity to renewable and nuclear power – where, in the latter, Iberdrola is the Spanish market leader – the group looks to be on the front foot. Like utilities in Britain, it says it seeks clarity and
coherence from its regulators in Spain and overseas.
Scotsman 23rd Feb 2007