nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

South Africa facing a R1-trillion nuclear financial disaster

Money down holeR1-trillion nuclear plans are simply “disastrous” for SA http://businesstech.co.za/news/energy/94677/r1-trillion-nuclear-plans-are-simply-disastrous-for-sa/ 31 July 15 Government’s R1-trillion nuclear build plans are going to turn South Africa’s energy crisis into a jobs crisis, according to the Democratic Alliance.

Earlier in July, the Department of Energy signed two memoranda of understanding with Russian state nuclear energy corporation Rosatom to implement several joint projects for education in the nuclear power industry.

Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson said that South Africa will start a nuclear build programme in 2015, in a bid to generate an additional 9,600MW of electricity.

The country will have as many as nine new nuclear power plants by 2030, with government pegging the total cost to build these at R500 million – though energy experts have stated R1 trillion was more realistic, and would likely increase.

In a statement issued on 31 July, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said the nuclear deal will drag the country’s economy back, and will cost thousands of South Africans their jobs.

According to the party, the details behind government’s nuclear plans show that the undertaking is unaffordable.

“Whichever funding model is chosen, you can rest assured that it will be paid for by the South African taxpayer, and that we can expect substantial tariff increases over many years.”

These higher prices would price the poor out of electricity usage, and would result in energy-heavy industries – like mining and manufacturing – shedding more jobs, said the DA.

“For a government that claims to be pro-poor – and for a country where 5.2 million people cannot find work and a further 2.4 million have given up looking – this is unfathomable.”

Maimane pointed to a number of flaws in the scheme:

  • Even if government’s estimate of R500 million was correct, South Africa cannot afford to build the nuclear reactors. This would result in private-public partnerships being formed, which would be reflected in current and future electricity prices increasing, as citizens would have to pay.
  • South Africa lacks the capacity and skills to operate eight nuclear power stations. We lack the capacity and skills to run the one we already have, said Maimane.
  • The project goes against the government’s own National Development Plan, which urges caution on nuclear, pointing rather towards gas, wind, and solar energy as a primary source of power.

To date, government has not provided solid details on the nuclear build plans.

“Until the government tells us how much the nuclear deal will cost, how we plan to pay for it, and how they intend to choose the preferred bidder, we cannot begin to entertain the notion of going down this path.”

The DA leader said that, while the party does not oppose nuclear power, the current plan is “not right” for the country, and it will do anything in its power to block the deal.

August 1, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, politics, South Africa | Leave a comment

Nuclear industry lobbying for tax=payer funding as a ‘carbon emissions cure’

U.S. nuclear operators try to save plants with carbon emission rule, Reuters, WASHINGTON | BY VALERIE VOLCOVICI , 31 July 15, The U.S. nuclear industry has made a last-minute push to urge the Obama administration to protect the country’s 100 nuclear units in its forthcoming carbon rule and prevent the early retirement of several plants.

cartoon-climate-con

Representatives of the Nuclear Energy Institute met on July 21 with White House officials who are currently reviewing the final version of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan. The industry contends the original version of the plan, released in mid-2014, fails to encourage states to keep some “at risk” plants from closing.

NEI and other industry officials said the final plan, which is expected as soon as Monday, should provide incentives for states to renew operating licenses and ramp up generation at nuclear plants.

The industry said eight plants – producing about 8,000 MW of generation – struggle to compete in competitive electricity markets. The lobby group argued that the loss of even one of these zero-carbon emission plants would be “a major blow to carbon reduction efforts.”

The details were posted on the White House Office of Management and Budget website.

The Clean Power Plan is the centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s climate change strategy, which seeks to slash power plant carbon emissions to 30 percent below 2005 levels by 2030……..

August 1, 2015 Posted by | climate change, politics, USA | Leave a comment

Bradwell: Handing Future UK nuclear Infrastructure to the Chinese

flag-UKflag-China NuClear News August 2015 The Government is preparing to hand over future UK nuclear infrastructure to Chinese firms, according to the GMB Union in a “total betrayal” of UK workers. The GMB raised concerns earlier this month about the prospect of the Bradwell, site in Essex, being given “lock, stock and barrel” to the Chinese National Nuclear Corporation.
 Energy Secretary Amber Rudd responded in a letter to the union: “The UK government welcomes overseas investment in the UK’s new nuclear programme. This includes investment and participation from Chinese companies in the Hinkley Point C project and progressive involvement more generally in the UK’s nuclear new build energy programme. In the future, this could include leading the development of a site in the UK and the potential deployment of a Chinese reactor technology in the UK, subject to meeting the stringent requirements of the UK’s independent nuclear regulatory regime.” (1)
 Gary Smith, GMB National Secretary for energy, said “I have studied the letter from Amber Rudd carefully and conclude that it looks that the UK Government is preparing for a hand over of the future UK nuclear infrastructure to the Chinese state. This is a total betrayal of workers in the UK and of the long term interests of the UK economy.”
 (2) Professor Andy Blowers, chairman of the Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG), takes a rather more fundamental objection to the proposals than the union’s. He said “There shouldn’t be investment from anybody, even British investors. The idea of creating more rubbish when we don’t have any way to dispose of what we’ve already got just seems quite frankly immoral.”
(3) 1. Western Morning News 29th June 2015 http://www.westernmorningnews.co.uk/Chinese-Hinkley-Cnuclear-deal-8216-betrayal/story-26797760-detail/story.html
2. GMB 29th June 2015 http://www.gmb.org.uk/newsroom/chinese-state-role-in-new-nuclear
3. Essex Chronicle 18th June 2015 http://www.essexchronicle.co.uk/Nuclear-plan-blight-Bradwell-scommunity-200/story-26715329-detail/story.html      http://www.no2nuclearpower.org.uk/nuclearnews/NuClearNewsNo76.pdf

August 1, 2015 Posted by | politics, politics international, UK | Leave a comment

Canada’s Nuclear Regulator doesn’t like Bureau d’audiences publiques

nuclear-lobby-put-downCanada’s nuclear regulator slams Quebec uranium review, Resource Clips, by Greg Klein | July 30, 2015 A recommendation against uranium mining in Quebec has come under fire from the federal agency that regulates uranium mining and nuclear energy in Canada. In a July 27 letter to Quebec environment minister David Heurtel, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission criticized the province’s BAPE commission for “conclusions and recommendations that lack scientific basis and rigour.”

Earlier this month, following a year-long review, the provincial government-appointed Bureau d’audiences publiques sur l’environnement suggested Quebec “could decide to suspend uranium mining either temporarily or permanently.” Should the province decide to allow mining, BAPE recommended conditions including consensus-building and additional research that the bureau said would require years to complete……..

“BAPE’s recommendation not to proceed is based on the perceived lack of social acceptance and not on proven science.”

Quebec has no uranium mines. The former Parti Québécois government imposed a moratorium on uranium exploration in March 2013 following the James Bay Cree Nation’s opposition to Strateco Resources’ Matoush project. Saying it had spent $123 million on Matoush, the company launched legal action against the province and has since delisted from the TSX.

As the BAPE inquiry began last year, the Quebec Mineral Exploration Association called for the replacement of chairperson Louis-Gilles Francoeur, whom the association called a “former environmental journalist.”

A decision on BAPE’s recommendations will come from Quebec’s environment minister, who’ll review the report with a committee.

August 1, 2015 Posted by | Canada, politics | Leave a comment

Will USA’s Nuclear Regulatory Commission allow the nuclear lobby to set radiation standards?

If a pro-hormesis model is allowed to take hold, it will change things forever…

It could give the nuclear industry an excuse to release more radiation from nuclear power plants; an excuse for gov’t quackagencies to allow even more radiation in food and water; allow doctors to give you more radiation…

It allows you to be exposed to low-level radiation because “it’s good for you.”

ALERT: NRC may rule radiation exposure is healthful, Heal Fukushima July 27, 2015  The Nuclear Regulatory Commission may decide that exposure to ionizing radiation is beneficial – the radiation from nuclear bombs, nuclear power plants, depleted uranium, x-rays, and Fukushima. It has opened a proceeding to consider adopting this “radiation is good for you” model. Continue reading

July 31, 2015 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

€7bn needed to keep loss-making nuclear company AREVA alive

scrutiny-on-costsLossmaking Areva needs €7bn capital injection, Ft.com Michael Stothard in Paris, 30 July 15  Struggling French nuclear group Areva on Thursday disclosed it needed a bigger than expected capital injection worth €7bn as the company also unveiled a far-reaching agreement with EDF on asset disposals and other projects.

The two companies — both state-controlled — agreed in principle that EDF will pay €2bn for a 75 per cent stake in Areva’s reactor unit, called Areva NP, in a radical reshaping of the French nuclear industry that has come after months of tense negotiations……..

Following the deal, Areva, which reported a €4.8bn net loss last year, will be reduced to a nuclear fuel company that mines, enriches and then disposes of uranium. The heart of the company — designing, building and servicing nuclear reactors — is being sold off.

Areva said that overall it would need €7bn in capital over the next two years, however, meaning that as much as €5bn will be required from sources other than EDF, the French utility group. Much of these additional funds are likely to come from a government-backed capital raising.

The French government may have to contribute between €4bn and €5bn, far more than the €2bn to €3bn that ministers had hoped for just a few months ago, according to people familiar with the situation, although the exact level of the capital raising was not announced on Thursday.

Areva said it could secure €0.4bn from selling some other assets including Canberra, its nuclear measurements subsidiary, and as much as €1.2bn from other sources of equity financing. This suggested a government-backed capital raising that might be closer to €4bn.

On Thursday the two companies also said they would set up a dedicated company to be 80 per cent owned by EDF and 20 per cent by Areva NP, aimed at improving the design and management of brand new reactors projects.

One of the problems that has weighed on Areva in recent years has been cost overruns at key projects, particularly the Olkiluoto 3 reactor in Finland, which is 10 years behind schedule and prompted the company to take €3.9bn in impairment charges………..http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/110c0476-368c-11e5-b05b-b01debd57852.html#axzz3hPaCUU5g

July 31, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, France, politics | Leave a comment

France moves towards renewable energy, while government still shelling out $billions to save AREVA

France‘s decision to reduce dependence on nuclear power will not go down well with the already struggling nuclear industry, which includes French players like Areva, EDF and GDF Suez. Areva, the world’s largest nuclear company, reported a loss of $4.8 billion in 2014 after it started facing a dip in demand following the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

Areva is one of the most prominent companies in France, so the French government has been trying hard to save the company through a proposed deal with EDF, which involves selling off its reactor and fuel treatment business. According to recent reports, the French government could end up shelling out $5.5 billion to rescue Areva, far more than anticipated.

Is France Ready To Move Away From Nuclear Energy? http://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy/Nuclear-Power/Is-France-Ready-To-Move-Away-From-Nuclear-Energy.html By  30 July 2015 | 0

   France is the world’s most nuclear dependent country. With 58 nuclear reactors in 19 power stations having a total capacity of 63.2 gigawatts, France is the second largest producer of nuclear energy in the world, second only to the United States.

But unlike the U.S., nuclear energy represents France’s largest source of electricity generation, accounting for around 77 percent of the country’s energy generation in 2014. However, in the last few years, France has witnessed growing public support in favor of developing newer technologies that can reduce carbon emissions and replace nuclear power.

In the year 2012, France’s newly elected President Francois Hollande pledged to reduce his country’s dependence on nuclear power to 50 percent by 2025. This triggered a ‘national debate for energy transition’ in France which lasted for eight months. The National Assembly of France then passed an Energy Transition for Green Growth bill in 2014 which would put a cap on the country’s nuclear power capacity at the current level of 63.2 gigawatts.

Last week saw French Lawmakers finally pass this bill which seeks to cut the country’s growing dependence on nuclear power. With the move, France is following Germany, which decided to significantly reduce its dependence on nuclear energy after the infamous 2011- Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan.

In order to meet this tough new target, Electricite De France or EDF (which is 85 percent government-owned) would have no other option but to close some of its nuclear power capacity in order to accommodate its new European Pressurized Reactor (EPR), which is currently under construction in Normandy.

The new law further requires France to increase the contribution of renewables in its total energy consumption to 32 percent by 2030. This is in addition to reducing the C02 emissions by 40 percent by 2030 when compared to 1990 levels and also reduce conventional fossil fuel consumption by 30 percent by 2030 from 2012 levels.

Although the law has made it quite clear that France now has to reduce its dependence on nuclear power, there are still several loopholes. as it hasn’t provided a clear manner in which the set target is supposed to be met and there is no specific implementation strategy put in place yet. “This law sets goals, which is interesting, but it doesn’t explain how to reach them, postponement of the detailed implementation plans is not a good sign,” said Yannick Rousselet of Greenpeace.

“I want France to become a nation of environmental excellence,” said French environmental minister Segolene Royal. She further said that recent steps taken by the French government could create close to 100,000 jobs in the renewable sector.

As the new law has also set a goal of increasing overall renewable energy consumption while also curtailing nuclear power, we can expect some major foreign investments in the French clean energy sector in the coming few years. French energy giant Total has in fact been investing a substantial amount in the solar sector. With its partnership with U.S. based Sunpower, Total might just ramp up its investments in the French solar sector.

It is interesting to note that wind energy also enjoys local public support in France as a 2014-CSA survey revealed that around 64 percent of local people see wind energy as a worthy replacement for nuclear power. According to the European Wind Energy Association, France increased its target for energy generation from wind to 19 gigawatts by 2020 from 8.2 gigawatts in 2014.

France is also the second largest producer of biofuels in Europe after Germany, mostly producing biodiesel. France has already set a goal of blending 10 percent of biofuels with its conventional fuels by 2020. So, with the current push towards renewables one can reasonably expect a surge in biofuel investments as well.

However, the same cannot be said for natural gas, as France is one of the four countries that have banned hydraulic fracturing or fracking. Experts predict that the French natural gas demand might even fall by the year 2020.

What does this mean for the suppliers of nuclear fuel and companies like AREVA?

France‘s decision to reduce dependence on nuclear power will not go down well with the already struggling nuclear industry, which includes French players like Areva, EDF and GDF Suez. Areva, the world’s largest nuclear company, reported a loss of $4.8 billion in 2014 after it started facing a dip in demand following the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

Areva is one of the most prominent companies in France, so the French government has been trying hard to save the company through a proposed deal with EDF, which involves selling off its reactor and fuel treatment business. According to recent reports, the French government could end up shelling out $5.5 billion to rescue Areva, far more than anticipated.

With its desire to shift away from nuclear energy, France is slowly and steadily preparing itself to adapt newer technologies and eventually move towards renewables. However, this transition requires a clear road map with a clear plan on the systematic closure of its nuclear capacity. Without these, it might take several years (beyond the target dates) for the Energy Transition law to get implemented.

By Gaurav Agnihotri for Oilprice.com

July 31, 2015 Posted by | France, politics | Leave a comment

$10 billion bonanza to save Exelon nuclear plants in Illinois?

New power rules may preserve Exelon nuclear plants in Illinois, St Louis Post Dispatch,    By Scott DiSavino Reuters , 30 July 15, New rules for U.S. electricity providers could save two money-losing nuclear power plants in Illinois from shutting down and may amount to a $10 billion bonanza to U.S. power producers.

A system of rewards and penalties is part of a requirement approved last month by federal energy regulators that applies to a power auction next month.

It may benefit some costly nuclear reactors in the PJM power region, which stretches from New Jersey to Illinois, that have had a tough time competing against the growing use of wind turbines and power plants fired with cheap natural gas.

That is particularly true for two plants operated by Exelon Corp., the biggest U.S. nuclear power plant operator. It has warned it might be forced to shut its Quad Cities and Byron nuclear plants in northern Illinois, unless the reactors’ revenues increase.

 Other generators expected to benefit from the new requirements, including those with nuclear plants located far away from the Midwest wind farms, include Dynegy Inc., NRG Energy Inc., Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. and Talen Energy Corp.

Thanks to the growth of alternative power sources and abundant gas from shale formations, PJM power prices have fallen an average of 20 percent over the past five years to around $50 per megawatt hour compared with the prior five years…….

The rule creates a niche for nuclear plants, which run consistently, unlike breeze-dependent wind turbines, and do not need potential upgrades to withstand harsh winter temperatures like gas plants.

Under so-called capacity performance requirements, generators will receive higher fees to keep plants available but face stiff penalties if their units don’t deliver power when needed during system emergencies. Fines for an average 100-megawatt plant would be around $350,000 an hour………

If analysts’ estimates are correct and all ten of Exelon’s reactors in northern Illinois are selected to provide capacity in the auction, the company could receive around $600 million for those reactors during the 2018-2019 delivery year………

Exelon has lost close to $1 billion over the past five years on its nuclear operations — about $350 million at Quad Cities alone. It expects those losses to continue, based on forward power prices, Dominguez said.

Even if Byron and Quad Cities clear the auction, Dominguez said they still face the risk of shutdown unless federal, state and regional policy makers find ways to compensate generators for the environmental and reliability benefits that non-carbon emitting nuclear plants provide.

In the meantime, extra revenues from the capacity auction could keep the money losing reactors operating for a few more years until possible new carbon standards are available. http://www.stltoday.com/business/local/new-power-rules-may-preserve-exelon-nuclear-plants-in-illinois/article_e4007591-df54-5795-9b5f-de5a1e6ab3f8.html

July 31, 2015 Posted by | business and costs, politics, USA | Leave a comment

Fukushima compensation increased to 7.07 trillion yen

flag-japanJapan increases Fukushima compensation to US$57 billion, Malaysian Insider,  28 July 2015 Japan on Tuesday approved an increase in compensation payments for the Fukushima crisis to 7.07 trillion yen (RM218 billion), as tens of thousands of evacuees remain in temporary housing more than four years after the disaster.

Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco), the operator of the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear station, will receive 950 billion yen (RM29 billion) more in public funds on top of the 6.125 trillion agreed earlier, the utility and the government said.

The increase, agreed after a request by Tepco, adds to the bill for taxpayers for the disaster in March 2011, when three reactors melted down after an earthquake and tsunami, in the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl in 1986, destroying businesses and livelihoods….

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government and Tepco, which was bailed out by taxpayers in 2012, are undertaking an unprecedented cleanup to lower radiation levels in towns closest to the plant, although some areas will likely remain off limits for decades.

Inside the plant, Tepco has struggled to bring the situation under control and it is estimated removing the melted fuel from the wrecked reactors and cleaning up the site will cost tens of billions of dollars and take decades to complete.

The government plans to revoke evacuation orders for most people forced from their homes by the disaster within two years as part of a plan to cap compensation payouts and speed up reconstruction. – Reuters, July 28, 2015.  http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/world/article/japan-increases-fukushima-compensation-to-us57-billion#sthash.NtMaDGfW.dpuf

July 29, 2015 Posted by | Japan, politics | 1 Comment

South Africa is warned – Nuclear power is a dying industry

scrutiny-on-costsWith the South African build is set to cost anywhere up to R1-trillion, that would mean the same cost (adjusted upward with inflation) would have to be born near the end of this century, he says. “Except then you will have no income coming in. Just the cost of powering the reactors while you wind down operations. And the endless cost of looking after the nuclear waste.”

“This is a dying industry and there are just too many unanswered questions for South Africa to go down this path. Except we know the element of corruption can always be present in the nuclear industry,”

radiation-sign-sadflag-S.AfricaNuclear a ‘technology of the past‘, Mail & Guardian, 27 JUL 2015  SIPHO KINGS Russian nuclear activist has labelled South Africa’s pursuit of new nuclear capacity – with Russian support – as “naive” and advised against it. “Nuclear is not technology of the future. This is technology of the past, of the Cold War.” This is the conclusion Vladimir Slivyak, of the Russian environmental group Ecodefense, reaches when talking about nuclear technology. Continue reading

July 29, 2015 Posted by | politics, South Africa | Leave a comment

Thorough analysis of Switzerland’s plan for exit from nuclear power

It is a simple statement of fact that Germany today produces more solar and wind power than the entire projected electricity demand for Switzerland in 2050. What is possible in Germany should be manageable in Switzerland too. ………Conservation, greater efficiencies, alternative energy sources, the smart grid, and the introduction of new technologies mean that Switzerland should be readily able to find ways to replace the energy  lost by the closing of its existing nuclear power plants. 


flag-SwitzerlandSmall country, big challenge: Switzerland’s upcoming transition to sustainable energy,
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 25 July 15 Dominic A. Notter

Abstract

highly-recommendedSwitzerland has long met a good portion of its energy needs by using nuclear power. But in the wake of the accident at Fukushima, the country will have to turn elsewhere—while still remaining true to its history of self-sufficiency and energy independence. This effort is made more complicated by fears that one of its traditional energy sources, hydropower, may no longer be as reliable as in the past. But with a combination of energy conservation, greater efficiencies, alternative energy sources, the “smart grid,” and the introduction of new technologies currently on the drawing board, the country may readily be able to replace the energy lost by the closing of its existing nuclear power plants. And the loss of the snowpack and glaciers (due to climate change) may not be as dire for Switzerland’s hydropower as first anticipated……. Continue reading

July 27, 2015 Posted by | politics, Reference, Switzerland | 3 Comments

Canada Environment Minister to decide on Lake Huron nuclear waste plan before court case happens ?

flag-canadaChallenge to nuclear waste bunker near Lake Huron on hold until new year http://www.610cktb.com/OntarioCP/Article.aspx?id=474127 Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press, 26 July 15  TORONTO – A court challenge to the preliminary approval of a plan to bury dangerous nuclear waste near Lake Huron has been put on hold now until next year — well after the next federal election.

The delay means that Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq will have made her decision on whether to green light the proposed storage before the case is heard.

Initially, Aglukkaq was to render her decision by Sept. 2, but she instead moved that back to December — ostensibly to allow for public input on any conditions that should be imposed.

“The minister decided to in effect give herself more time, which took the time period until after the federal election,” Rod McLeod, with Save our Saugeen Shores, said from Southampton, Ont., on Wednesday.

“We were put in a position of being required to comply with rather stringent procedural rules of Federal Court … when the minister in fact had unilaterally delayed the whole thing to suit her convenience.”

Save the Saugeen Shores had turned to Federal Court to overturn a review panel’s approval of the Ontario Power Generation proposal on the grounds that its recommendation to Aglukkaq was illegal and unreasonable. The group argues the panel was biased, failed to consider Canada’s international obligations, and violated Canadian environmental rules.

Approval of the billion-dollar deep geological repository near Kincardine, Ont., along with any conditions rests with Aglukkaq.

All the parties involved agreed to put the judicial review in abeyance, and Federal Court Prothonotary Roger Lafreniere issued the relevant order. Doing so also makes sense in terms of efficiency, McLeod said.

“If (Aglukkaq) decides in favour, then the judicial review in effect becomes a judicial review not just of the (panel) decision (but) of her decision.”

The citizens’ group now has until Jan. 16, 2016 to file its materials.

The waste proposal calls for permanently storing hundreds of thousands of cubic metres of so-called low and intermediate level nuclear waste in bedrock 680 metres underground at the site at the Bruce nuclear plant. Storage would be about one kilometre from Lake Huron.

While the company argues the rock is stable and would provide a hermetic seal to prevent any radioactivity reaching the lake for tens of thousands of years, opponents decry the plan as too risky.

More than 150 communities — many in the United States — have passed resolutions against any storage of nuclear waste near the Great Lakes.

Content Provided By Canadian Press.

July 27, 2015 Posted by | Canada, politics | Leave a comment

France quadruples carbon price, will move towards renewable energy

France Passes New Energy Law Quadruples Carbon Price, Bloomberg by  23 July 15, French lawmakers adopted a long-delayed energy law that will reduce the country’s reliance on nuclear reactors and raise carbon prices almost fourfold.

Lawmakers late Wednesday passed legislation that included a last-minute amendment initially rejected by the government to increase the target price of carbon to 56 euros ($61.48) a ton in 2020 and 100 euros a ton in 2030, according to the National Assemblywebsite. The rate, now 14.50 euros a ton, climbs to 22 euros a ton in 2016 and is integrated in a levy on fossil fuels.

The rise provides “visibility” to the business community on how carbon prices will evolve, Environment Minister Segolene Royal said. Higher taxes on fossil fuels will be offset by lower levies on other products, she also said.

 The new energy transition law, passed by a show of hands with no count to be published, reflects a campaign pledge three years ago by President Francois Hollande to cut France’s nuclear-energy reliance in favor of renewables………http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-07-23/france-passes-new-energy-law-quadruples-carbon-price

July 25, 2015 Posted by | France, politics | Leave a comment

Stephen Harper, Canada’s PM blocking action on climate change

flag-canadaclimate-posterCanada’s PM blocking climate reform, says Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne, Guardian,  , 21 July 15  Leader of country’s biggest province condemns Stephen Harper ahead of elections: ‘There isn’t a collaborative process around any of this’ The leader of Canada’s biggest province has escalated her feud with the country’s prime minister, accusing Stephen Harper of obstructing efforts to fight climate change and calling on Canadians to make global warming a decisive issue in the coming elections.

In an interview with the Guardian, Kathleen Wynne, the Liberal premier of Ontario, brought long-simmering tensions with Harper over energy and economic policy to a rollicking boil, repeatedly calling out the Conservative prime minister for blocking efforts to cut carbon pollution.

When it came to fighting climate change, Harper was an obstruction rather than a help, she said……….

Wynne called on Canadians to vote on climate change in the October elections. “I hope that climate change and taking action on climate change is an election issue,” she said.

As premier, Wynne has championed the efforts of Ontario and other provinces to deal with climate change. Last week’s meeting of 22 states, provinces and territories called for setting a price on carbon.

Ontario won positive attention when it phased out the use of coal in its power plants last year.

But the environmental commissioner said on 7 July that theprovince would have to do much more to meet its 2020 target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Wynne’s advisers said she hoped to cut carbon pollution from transport by investing in public transit and easing congestion.

Climate change looms even larger over Harper, who faces increasing criticism at home and abroad tying Canada’s economic future to the development of the tar sands.

At international climate conferences, the Harper government now is routinely handed out mock “fossil” awards for its failure to deal with climate change. Campaigners have accused Harper of treading on the rights of government scientists……..

Wynne said Canada should have put forward a more ambitious climate pledge ahead of the UN negotiations in Paris.

Canada will not meet its 2020 target for cutting emissions because of the tar sands, and it has retreated still further from those earlier promises in its pledge ahead of the Paris climate talks……..http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/21/canada-climate-change-kathleen-wynne-stephen-harper-ontario

July 25, 2015 Posted by | Canada, climate change, politics | Leave a comment

USA Nuclear Regulatory Commission seriously considering quack science of “radiation hormesis” !

Linear No-Threshold Model and Standards for Protection Against Radiation, Office of the Federal Register USA

A Proposed Rule by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on 06/23/2015   This document has a comment period that ends in 46 days (09/08/2015)

ACTION

Petition For Rulemaking; Notice Of Docketing And Request For Comment.

SUMMARY

quackThe U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has received three petitions for rulemaking (PRM) requesting that the NRC amend its “Standards for Protection Against Radiation” regulations and change the basis of those regulations from the Linear No-Threshold (LNT) model of radiation protection to the radiation hormesis model.

The radiation hormesis model provides that exposure of the human body to low levels of ionizing radiation is beneficial and protects the human body against deleterious effects of high levels of radiation.

Whereas, the LNT model provides that radiation is always considered harmful, there is no safety threshold, and biological damage caused by ionizing radiation (essentially the cancer risk) is directly proportional to the amount of radiation exposure to the human body (response linearity). ………The NRC is examining the issues raised in these petitions to determine whether they should be considered in rulemaking.

The NRC is requesting public comments on these petitions for rulemaking………

Submit comments by September 8, 2015. Comments received after this date will be considered if it is practical to do so, but the NRC is able to assure consideration only for comments received on or before this date.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by any of the following methods (unless this document describes a different method for submitting comments on a specific subject):……. https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2015/06/23/2015-15441/linear-no-threshold-model-and-standards-for-protection-against-radiation

 

July 24, 2015 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

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