Japan “will resuscitate nuclear energy, and rebuild the basis for promoting exports of infrastructure facilities,” indicating that the ministry would continue to advance nuclear power generation and further expand nuclear facilities exports.
Because the pro-nuclear Abe administration has said, “We will share our experience of the accident and lessons learned from the disaster with countries of the world,” the ministry’s report can be regarded as a prototype for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s nuclear policy.
Ministry continued promoting nuclear power right after Fukushima accident December 02, 2013 THE ASAHI SHIMBUN The industry ministry began working to continue promoting nuclear power even immediately following the disastrous meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in March 2011, sources said.
The Asahi Shimbun has obtained a copy of the ministry’s confidential internal document titled, “Toward the Renaissance of Nuclear Energy,” which was compiled in late March 2011.
The report was written by a senior ministry official familiar with nuclear power facilities and distributed to its executives involved in designing the country’s energy policy, according to the sources.
The in-house document was used as a basis to determine the nation’s future nuclear policy in the aftermath of the disaster triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011, the sources said. Read more »
Japan has said the main purpose of Emperor Akihito’s ongoing visit to India was to add more ballast to the bilateral relationship.
One of the elements that would add greater depth to the ties would be a civil nuclear agreement. “We are close to a bilateral deal on the peaceful use of nuclear energy,’’ said senior Japanese diplomats accompanying the Emperor, who is on a six-day visit to India……http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nuclear-deal-with-japan-on-the-anvil/article5415157.ece
How Pakistan and China Are Strengthening Nuclear Ties http://world.time.com/2013/12/02/how-pakistan-and-china-are-strengthening-nuclear-ties/?iid=gs-main-lead
The reactors are expected to start supplying 2,200 megawatts to the grid by 2019. The complex is not the first energy investment or nuclear project in Pakistan that China has been involved with, but it will be by far the largest.
The nuclear power relationship between Pakistan and China is widely seen as a continuing effort to respond to the India-U.S. civilian nuclear deal, which, among other things, ended a decades-long moratorium on U.S. companies selling nuclear technology to India, despite India not being a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. The move rankled Pakistan, which has also not signed the treaty and worries about a nuclear buildup by a country it considers its archenemy. China, too, criticized the deal for, it asserted, undermining nonproliferation. That the U.S. was building ties with India to counterbalance China’s growing power in Asia was probably not lost on Beijing either.
the draft Russian agreement, which Business Day has seen, had a veto clause, which would allow the parties to block the involvement of a third country
Russia turns up heat on ambitions for nuclear build in SA BUSINES DAY LIVE, BY CAROL PATON, 29 NOVEMBER 2013 THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT IS PUMPING UP THE PROPAGANDA SURROUNDING THE COUNTRY’S NUCLEAR AMBITIONS IN SOUTH AFRICA WITH A SERIES OF REPORTS ON THE OFFICIAL INTERNATIONAL BROADCASTER VOICE OF RUSSIA THAT A DEAL HAS BEEN STRUCK TO BUILD SOUTH AFRICA’S PLANNED NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS.
Several countries are jockeying for position in South Africa’s nuclear build programme, which envisages the construction of three nuclear power plants to supply 9,600MW at the cost of at least R1-trillion. The government has said the procurement process is close to finalised and there is high expectation among bidders that it will go ahead next year.
This week, the temperature over the nuclear build was further heightened when state-owned Russian corporation Rosatom hosted a nuclear suppliers’ forum in Johannesburg “with the aim of establishing and developing lasting partnerships in South Africa”.
At the forum on Monday, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Nuclear Energy Corporation of South Africa (Necsa) and a Rosatom subsidiary. Read more »
Egypt moves ahead with nuclear plant to address electricity crisis ALMONITOR, Egypt Pulse Ayah Aman 29 Nov 13, CAIRO — The Egyptian government is taking new steps to implement its ambitious program to use nuclear energy for the generation of electricity. This comes after the project had been halted due to security, political and economic reasons as well as popular opposition…….
A source at the EAEA told Al-Monitor that the government expected to receive offers from 30 international companies for the execution of the project. The actual competition has been limited to 10 companies from six countries: Russia, China, Japan, South Korea, the United States and France…….
“The government will meet the $4 billion financing through grants from companies that it will pay back in installments,” the same source clarified. “However, the Egyptian government has yet to receive any offers for financing or assistance.” He brushed off criticism that external financing constituted a violation of sovereignty, “as it is the only option available to expedite the completion of the project.”
A delegation from the international consulting firm WorleyParsons visited Cairo in early November and met with experts on nuclear safety……… The Supreme Council of Energy is scheduled to hold a meeting next week, chaired by Mansour, to discuss the nuclear dossier and review the steps being considered to hold the tender to build nuclear power plants. Read more »
India’s state-owned monopoly Nuclear Power Corp. had signed an initial pact with Areva in 2010 for the supply and installation of equipment needed for building two nuclear power reactors of 1,650 megawatts each at Jaitapur in the western state of Maharashtra. The plan is to eventually build a total of six reactors with a combined capacity of 9.9 gigawatts, which would be the biggest nuclear power complex in India at a single location.
But the cost of the equipment has risen due to the higher cost of borrowing as well as a slide in the rupee’s value against the U.S. dollar this year, which would more than double the cost of electricity generation from an initial estimate of about 4 rupees (6.4 U.S. cents) per unit.
“The price of electricity from the project once it becomes operational can not be more than 6.50 rupees,” said R.K. Sinha, chairman of India’s Atomic Energy Commission, the country’s top nuclear policy making body. “Negotiations are still on.”
An Areva India executive, who declined to be named, said negotiations on the sale of the equipment are still under way, while Areva India chairman and managing director Erwan Hinault didn’t immediately respond to emailed queries.
Nuclear Power Corp. had earlier expected to sign an agreement with Areva for the supply of equipment for the first two reactors by end-2012, but negotiations remained inconclusive. Global nuclear equipment companies such as Areva, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy and Westinghouse Electric Co. have been keen to capitalize on India’s plans to spend billions of dollars to boost its nuclear power capacity. More than half of India’s 228 gigawatts of total power generation capacity is based on coal, which is in short supply…. http://online.wsj.com/article/DN-CO-20131128-003020.html?dsk=
World Bank says no nuclear investment http://www.skynews.com.au/businessnews/article.aspx?id=928794 November 28, 2013 The World Bank and United Nations have appealed for billions of dollars to provide electricity for the poorest nations but say there will be no investment in nuclear power.
‘We don’t do nuclear energy,’ said World Bank president Jim Yong Kim on Wednesday, as he and UN leader Ban Ki-moon outlined efforts to make sure all people have access to electricity by 2030. Kim said $US600-800 ($A659-878) billion a year will be needed to meet the campaign target of universal access to electricity, doubling energy efficiency and doubling the share of renewable energy by 2030. In some countries, only 10 per cent of the population has electricity.
So far, the campaign has a pledge of one billion US dollars from the OPEC Fund for International Development, Bank of America has raised $US500 million through the world’s first ‘green bond’ and Norway has committed to spend two billion krone (US$325 million) on renewable energy efforts in 2014.
Kim said the World Bank is preparing energy plans for 42 countries that would be ready in June, but said any money raised would only go to new power sources. ’Nuclear power from country to country is an extremely political issue,’ Kim told reporters.
‘The World Bank Group does not engage in providing support for nuclear power. We think that this is an extremely difficult conversation that every country is continuing to have. ’And because we are really not in that business our focus is on finding ways of working in hydro electric power in geo-thermal, in solar, in wind,’ he said.
‘We are really focusing on increasing investment in those modalities and we don’t do nuclear energy.’
Kim highlighted private financing for power expansion in Nigeria and Ivory Coast and said efforts were being made to launch a similar deal for Myanmar, where the government has launched major reform efforts. ’We are working and moving very quickly to try to ensure that Myanmar experiences a clear democracy dividend,’ Kim said. The World Bank chief said it had been difficult to find long term capital for poorer countries but insisted: ‘We will show investors that sustainable energy is an opportunity they cannot afford to miss.’
Of course, the nuclear lobby is well-heeled and has its silver-tongued apologists who will do their best to discredit such stories. Beyond the despicable aspects of this, you should consider, from an investment point of view, the risk that the industry loses control of the public relations battle as more stories emerge – and legal consequences ensue……uranium stocks are a no-go as a long-term investment.
Meltdown Coming? The Uranium Story You Haven’t Heard Money Morning 27 November 2013 by Chris Mayer “……You remember the nuclear disaster at Fukushima? It was a horrible human tragedy that is still playing out – and in ways I am sure you will be surprised to learn.
The disaster also set back the so-called nuclear renaissance that was then in swing. Uranium prices fell like a piano tumbling down a flight of stairs, only recently crashing down to five-year lows and laying waste to uranium stocks.
But it’s been over two years since the meltdown at Fukushima, and memory is short. Here is Barron’s over the weekend, on its optimistic appraisal of Cameco, the world’s largest publicly traded producer of uranium:
‘Cameco shares recently rallied after stronger-than-expected third-quarter earnings, but are still flat for the year. They fetch just 15.2 times what the company has earned, well below its decade median of 24 times, and the low-cost producer generated net profit margins near 22% even when uranium prices slumped. Improving prices can only energize the stock.‘
Among the ‘reasons for optimism‘, Barron’s included ‘gradual progress toward the cleanup in Japan‘.
Barron’s piece inspired me to write to you today. As a long-term investor, I am not tempted – at all – by the apparent bargain in uranium stocks. Read more »
Here’s What Warren Buffett Thinks About Renewable Energy The Motley Fool By Jason Hall | November 27, 2013 |
“Rule No. 1: Never Lose Money. Rule No. 2: Never Forget Rule No. 1.”
Warren Buffett is famous for both his legendary investing acumen, and his simple, straightforward investing advice. For years, alternative energy has been viewed as non-competitive with traditional energy production from coal and other fossil fuels, making them money-losers for most investors.
Buffett’s own Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-B ) subsidiary MidAmerican Energy is heavily investing in alternative energy sources, including both wind and solar. And considering that MidAmerican produces more than $1.2 billion in annual “ammo” for Buffett’s “elephant gun,” the story on renewables is clearly changing.
Should investors follow t… (registered readers only) http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2013/11/27/when-it-comes-to-renewable-energy-buffetts-not-blo.aspx
GE Hitachi, Energy Dept. in talks over Ky. uranium Chron, By DYLAN LOVAN and ROGER ALFORD, Associated Press | November 27, 2013 LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy said Wednesday that it is entering negotiations with General Electric’s nuclear division on a proposal to replace an aging uranium enrichment plant in Kentucky with a new facility.
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy wants to build a laser enrichment facility that would make use of the depleted uranium kept at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant. The Energy Department announced that it has selected GE Hitachi to begin exclusive negotiations for the sale of the uranium inventory.
GE Hitachi spokesman Chris White said Global Laser Enrichment that uses a unique laser technology would extract natural uranium from Paducah’s stores of depleted tails. The uranium would be used to fuel commercial nuclear reactors in the U.S., he said.
The negotiations are just beginning and there is no timetable on building a new plant, White said…….http://www.chron.com/business/energy/article/GE-Hitachi-Energy-Dept-in-talks-over-Ky-uranium-5017015.php
they always give the dirty jobs to indigenous people
NAU seeks Navajos for uranium cleanup training http://www.sunherald.com/2013/11/25/5146098/nau-seeks-navajos-for-uranium.html BY FELICIA FONSECA Associated PressNovember 25, 2013 FLAGSTAFF, ARIZ. — Northern Arizona University is using federal grant money to address two of the most widespread problems on the Navajo Nation — unemployment and uranium contamination.
A $200,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will allow the school’s Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals to train up to 40 people over three years to safely handle radioactive materials and to find a job in a place where the unemployment rate hovers around 50 percent.
About 4 million tons of uranium ore were mined from the reservation from 1944 to 1986 for wartime weapons, leaving a legacy of death and disease. Families still live among the contamination that the tribe and federal government are working toward cleaning up. The top priority is the former Northeast Church Rock Mine near Gallup, N.M. Read more »
Nuclear faces long road as Ontario maps its energy future SHAWN MCCARTHY The Globe and Mail Nov. 25 2013 Canada’s nuclear industry is looking to persuade Ontario that it’s not dead yet. Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli will launch in the coming weeks a revised long-term energy plan that will spell out how the current government expects to feed the province’s appetite for electricity over the next two decades. The new road map comes as the nuclear sector – which will supply more than half the province’s electricity this year – battles to maintain its share of that market by proposing long-term, multi-billion-dollar projects in order to refurbish existing plants and sell the province new reactors.
But the industry is confronting a myriad of challenges: including assumptions about weak demand growth as a result of to economic shifts and greater efficiency and conservation; the low price of natural gas that is fuelling a boom in gas-fired power in the United States; the Liberal government’s aggressive commitment to build new wind and solar capacity, and even the possibility of buying electricity from Quebec.
Taken together, those factors could add up to a sharply diminished role for nuclear in Ontario, even as the country’s domestic reactor company, SNC-Lavalin Inc.’s Candu Energy Inc., struggles to make sales abroad. ……..
Some critics question whether even the refurbishments are needed, let alone the new reactors. Nuclear power suffers from that fact that its high, upfront capital costs must be amortized over 30 years in the case of refurbishments, and 50 to 60 years in the case of new reactors. Given the rapid technology transformation, a long-term bet on nuclear is fraught with the risk of the province being saddled with an expensive white elephant, York University’s Mark Winfield said…….
Ontario is currently moving towards a much greater reliance on wind power, backed up by natural gas generation when the wind turbines aren’t producing as much as expected…… http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/industry-news/energy-and-resources/nuclear-faces-long-road-as-ontario-maps-its-energy-future/article15595098/
Goldman Sachs to sell uranium unit BUSINESS DAY, BY SCOTT DISAVINO AND DAVID SHEPPARD, NOVEMBER 25 2013 NEW YORK — US BANK GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP HAS PUT ITS URANIUM TRADING BUSINESS UP FOR SALE, A SOURCE FAMILIAR WITH THE MATTER SAID ON FRIDAY, THE LATEST SIGN THAT WALL STREET’S MOST STORIED COMMODITY TRADER IS PARING BACK PARTS OF THE BUSINESS.
The move comes as other US banks, including JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley, look to exit physical commodity trading in the wake of increased government scrutiny, squeezed trading margins and forecasts for tepid demand in certain markets……
The move to sell also comes as uranium prices languish at their lowest since 2005. Spot prices of U3O8 (triuranium octoxide), a material that is converted to uranium hexafluoride for the purpose of uranium enrichment, have ranged from $34-$35 a pound since September, less than half the price prior to the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011……
Financial firms started to get into the uranium business in the mid-2000s when prices were rising on expectations demand would grow with the nuclear renaissance. Reuters http://www.bdlive.co.za/world/americas/2013/11/25/goldman-sachs-to-sell-uranium-unit
TV: Mentally disabled are working at Fukushima Daiichi, says journalist — Many men forced to go to plant — Homeless treated like ‘disposable people’ (VIDEO) http://enenews.com/tv-journalist-says-theres-mentally-disabled-workers-at-fukushima-many-men-forced-to-work-at-plant-homeless-treated-like-disposable-people-video
Atomic Mafia? Yakuza cleans up Fukushima, neglects basic worker
RT News, , Nov. 20, 2013: Homeless men employed cleaning up the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant, including those brought in by Japan’s yakuza gangsters, were not aware of the health risks they were taking and say their bosses treated them like “disposable people.” [...] While some workers voluntarily agreed to take jobs on the nuclear clean-up project, many others simply didn’t have a choice [...] many of the workers were brought into the nuclear plant by Japan’s organized crime syndicates, the yakuza. [...] Although a special task force to keep organized crime out of the nuclear clean-up project has been set up, investigators say they need first-hand reports from those forced to work by the yakuza [...]
Anonymous former Fukushima worker: We were given no insurance for health risks, no radiation meters even. We were treated like nothing, like disposable people — promised things, and then kicked us out when we received a large radiation dose.
Tomohiko Suzuki, journalist who worked at Fukushima plant: The government called Tepco to take urgent action, Tepco relayed it to subcontractors — and they, eventually, as they had a shortage of available workers, called the Yakuza for help. [...] They were given very general information about radiation and most were not even given radiation meters. They could have exposed themselves to large doses without even knowing it. Even the so-called Fukushima 50 [...] at least three of them were enrolled by the yakuza.
Aleksey Yaroshevsky, RT: : There are 25% more openings for jobs at Fukushima plant than applicants, according to government data. Gaps filled, says Suzuki, by the homeless, the desperately unemployed and even those with mental disabilities. Watch the broadcast here
TEPCO eyes restarting 4 reactors by 2015 November 23, 2013 THE ASAHI SHIMBUN by Mari Fujisaki and Takashi Ebuchi.) Tokyo Electric Power Co. hopes to have four nuclear reactors in Niigata Prefecture back online by 2015, including two planned for next summer, despite the crisis at its hobbled Fukushima nuclear plant.
The company intends to reactivate the No. 1 and No. 5 reactors at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant during the first half of 2015 after restarting the No. 6 and No. 7 reactors as early as July 2014, sources said. Both plans will be included in the utility’s rehabilitation program when it is revised toward the end of this year.
The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant has seven reactors. TEPCO estimates that for each reactor restart its annual profit will increase by about 100 billion yen ($1 billion)……
it remains unclear whether TEPCO can restart the reactors under its proposed time frame. NRA screenings could drag on if regulators demand detailed investigations to confirm that no active faults run immediately under the reactors.
Consent of local communities is also essential, but Niigata Governor Hirohiko Izumida remains cautious. He has criticized plans to restart the two reactors next summer as a pipe dream.
Meanwhile, TEPCO will speed up streamlining its operations while expanding investments, the sources said……http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201311230052
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