There was a very scary story out of Georgia today after two Armenian men pleaded guilty during a secret trial to smuggling highly enriched uranium into the former Soviet state and trying to sell it to an undercover agent posing as a representative of Islamic radicals. By proving once again that a black market for fissile materials still exists, the Georgia trials illustrates that any nuclear renaissance must be accompanied with the strictest safeguards and accounting, with international oversight at every step of the process. Nuclear power can play a role in the fight against climate change. But that will be useless if the price we pay is the destruction of a city by nuclear terrorists.
Time 8th Nov 2010 more >>
The Armenian government said today it had detained a man suspected of supplying nuclear bomb-grade uranium to two smugglers caught in Georgia earlier this year trying to sell it on the black market.
Guardian 9th Nov 2010 more >>
The capture of two Armenian men who attempted to sell weapons grade uranium to men posing as terrorists has raised concerns of a smuggling network for nuclear arms.
Daily Mail 8th Nov 2010 more >>
Suppose that a terrorist group manages to get hold of nuclear material, make a bomb and set it off in a city centre somewhere. Will the fragments that are left leave clues to who did it, or where the fissile material came from? Tests on residues from the world’s first nuclear explosion suggest they might.
New Scientist 8th Nov 2010 more >>
BBC 8th Nov 2010 more >>
A handy list of links to all things Planning Act – the Act and legislation made under it, government and IPC guidance, Parliamentary debates and reports. I will keep this entry up to date as events unfold.
Bircham, Dyson & Bell 2010 more >>
Low Level Waste
Twelve people had to be decontaminated after a chemical explosion at a waste facility in Cannock. More than 30 firefighters attended the Augean liquid treatment plant in the Bridgtown area of Cannock at 1200 GMT on Friday. Two Augean staff were taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. (Likely to feed fears at Kings Cliffe about the company’s track record on safety and claims of competency).
BBC 5th Nov 2010 more >>
German police began carrying protesters away from a road Tuesday morning after 4,000 demonstrators attempted to block a nuclear waste shipment to the village of Gorleben. As they were hauled off to the side of the road by two officers each, protesters shouted, “Abschalten,” or “Turn them off,” referring to the nuclear power stations.
CNN 9th Nov 2010 more >>
Guardian 8th Nov 2010 more >>
From Australia to Canada, from India to the UK – the world is watching the ongoing protest of the CASTOR nuclear transport in Germany. This morning the nuclear train reached its final stop in Dannenberg, a small town approximately 10 kilometres from the final destination – an interim nuclear storage facility in Gorleben. It was stopped last night for several hours by acts of non-violent direct action on a scale never before seen in the region, which has been the site of similar protests against transports of nuclear waste since 1997. Approximately 10,000 demonstrators – including local residents, politicians, environmental groups, football clubs, unions and supporters coming from all over Germany and beyond – occupied the railway tracks.
Greenpeace Nuclear Reaction 8th Nov 2010 more >>
France and China have agreed to form what they are calling a “strategic” partnership in civilian nuclear power.
The announcement came on November 4 as Chinese President Hu Jintao opened a three-day state visit to France. The opening day of the visit included the announcement of more than $20 billion worth of new deals between France and China, including in the nuclear sector.
Oil Price 8th Nov 2010 more >>
Rolls-Royce, the global power systems company, has secured contracts worth over GBP35m from China Nuclear Power Engineering to provide reactor safety instrumentation and controls systems for eight new nuclear power plants operated by China Guangdong Nuclear Power.
Energy Business Review 8th Nov 2010 more >>
Italy’s Council of Ministers has agreed on the board members of the country’s Agency for Nuclear Safety (ASN). Former health minister and noted oncologist Umberto Veronesi has been named as the agency’s president. Veronesi is joined by nuclear scientists Maurizio Cumo and Marco Enrico Ricotti, ministry of environment chief of staff Michele Corradino and magistrate and terrorism expert Stefano Dambruoso. The long-awaited formal announcement of the ASN board means that Italy has completed another step on the road to its nuclear energy renaissance.
World Nuclear News 8th Nov 2010 more >>
A four-year delay to the replacement of Britain’s Trident nuclear deterrent will cost up to £1.4bn, prompting claims tonight that David Cameron is incurring extra spending to appease the Liberal Democrats. Labour accused the prime minister of playing politics with Britain’s national security after the defence secretary Liam Fox announced that the government’s decision to prolong the life of the current Trident deterrent by four years would cost an extra £1.2-£1.4bn.
Guardian 9th Nov 2010 more >>
Extending the life of Trident will cost up to £1.4bn casting doubt over the savings made by delaying replacement.
FT 9th Nov 2010 more >>
Westcountry-based nuclear-powered submarines have crashed eight times in the last 20 years, the Ministry of Defence has admitted. A Parliamentary answer revealed 16 groundings and collisions suffered by the British submarine fleet – involving icebergs, trawlers and even yachts – since 1988. Half of the incidents involved boats based at Plymouth. The embarrassing list includes the accident in 2002 when Devonport-based HMS Trafalgar grounded off the Scottish coast causing £5 million worth of damage. A year later HMS Tireless struck an iceberg while on Arctic patrol.
This is Devon 8th Nov 2010 more >>