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The Nuclear Renaissance has failed. China and Russia cannot save it.

Energy Policy (accessed) 12th Nov 2018 , Steve Thomas: Is it the end of the line for Light Water Reactor technology or can China and Russia save the day?

The Nuclear Renaissance has failed. China and Russia cannot save it.

LWR technology is a blind alley. In the
late 1990s, a new generation of reactor designs evolved from existing
designs was touted as solving the economic problems that led to the
collapse of reactor ordering after the Chernobyl disaster. It was claimed
these designs would be cheap and easy to build because they would be
simpler and use passive safety, modular construction and standardisation.

The US and UK governments were convinced by this and launched reactor
construction programmes. However, 20 years on, the claims have proved false
and the US and UK programmes are in disarray. The last hope for the nuclear
industry appears to be that Chinese and Russian reactor vendors, with
powerful support from their governments, will take over, providing reactors
that are cheap but meet the safety standards required in Europe and North
America.

However, these vendors and their designs are largely unproven in
open markets. There is also little evidence that their reactors will be
cheap, there are concerns about quality and safety culture and there are
national security concerns that may deter customers. New technologies, such
as radical new ones, Generation IV, and Small Modular Reactors are unproven
and, at best, a long way from commercial deployment.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S030142151830716X?dgcid=author

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November 15, 2018 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Opposition to subsidies to keep alive aging and financially failing nuclear power plants

Beyond Nuclear 11th Nov 2018 , As members of Three Mile Island Alert, a watchdog group, we are resolutely
opposed to the present attempts by utilities in Pennsylvania and Ohio to
secure huge subsidies to keep their aging and financially failing nuclear
power plants operational well beyond their “expiration dates”.
Such a decision would have national implications. The diversion of billions of
dollars into nuclear subsidies would distort markets and state regulatory
decisions and result in lower investment in renewable resources and energy
efficiency.
This in turn would prolong the uneconomic existence of a
resource that is not clean energy.
The Union of Concerned Scientists, in its new report, argues that the trajectories of existing renewable energy
and efficiency standards are insufficient to prevent a dangerous increase
in CO2 emissions, and that a price on carbon could serve to better mitigate
carbon emissions as long as nuclear reactors remain operational.
This latter requirement is roundly contradicted by reports over the last several
years that show that, even in Pennsylvania, a state with one of the highest
greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions rates, GHG reduction goals can be met under
the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan targets through
planned power plant retirements.
https://beyondnuclearinternational.org/2018/11/11/no-nuclear-bailouts-for-pennsylvania-and-ohio/

November 15, 2018 Posted by | climate change, USA | Leave a comment

Strong ctiticism of plan to close initial group of Hanford nuclear wastetanks.

2,000 people agree: DOE plan for Hanford tank waste is not good, Tri City Herald, BY ANNETTE CARY, acary@tricityherald.com – 14 Nov 18, RICHLAND, WA 

More than 2,000 people submitted comments or signed petitions critical of a proposal for closing Hanford’s underground radioactive waste storage tanks, according to a coalition of environmental and Hanford watchdog groups.

The Department of Energy sought comments on a draft evaluation that concluded no significant threat to the environment would be posed by its plan to close an initial group of Hanford tanks.

The 16 single-shell tanks that make up the group called the C Tank Farm have been emptiedof about 96 percent of the radioactive and hazardous chemical waste they once held. The waste was left from the past processing of irradiated uranium fuel to remove plutonium for the nation’s nuclear weapons program.

DOE has proposed stabilizing the tanks, which still hold about 64,000 gallons of nuclear waste, by filling them with concrete-like grout and leaving them in the ground in central Hanford…….

Hanford Challenge, Columbia Riverkeeper and the Nuclear Resources Defense Council submitted comments jointly, challenging the legality of reclassifying the waste as low level waste and calling the proposal not protective of human health and the environment.

The proposal must be withdrawn, they said.

DOE has said it is committed to an open, transparent process and will consider comments from states, tribal nations and the public before making a final determination.
The public comment period on the draft evaluation closed last week, but there will be other chances for public comment before a final decision is made.

DOE has asked the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to do a technical review and a public meeting will be held with DOE and NRC, likely in early 2019.

DOE could issue a final evaluation and determination, including a response to the NRC

review and public comments, in the spring.

Additional regulatory steps would be needed before grouting the C Farm Tanks would be allowed to proceed. A separate public comment period would be required to modify DOE’s dangerous waste permit issued by the Department of Ecology.

November 15, 2018 Posted by | USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Massive fans being built to ventilate underground nuclear waste dump in new Mexico

Work underway on massive fans for nuclear waste repository https://apnews.com/2cefc1ad7dd34f22a8dd7e1ee86aaabc  CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) 14 Nov 18— The U.S. Energy Department says a New York-based company is building several massive fans to be used in a new multimillion-dollar ventilation system for the federal government’s only underground nuclear waste repository.

Officials say the six fans being made by the Encorus Group will significantly increase the amount of air in the underground portion of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southern New Mexico.

Each fan will stand 20 feet tall and weigh 44,000 pounds.

Construction of the ventilation system is expected to wrap up in early 2021.  he ventilation overhaul was prompted by a radiation release in 2014 that contaminated portions of the repository and forced its closure for nearly three years. The release resulted from an inappropriately packed drum of waste that came from Los Alamos National Laboratory.

November 15, 2018 Posted by | USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant under investigation by NRC

Alabama, By Paul Gattis | pgattis@al.com, pgattis@al.com, 

A north Alabama nuclear plant is facing investigation by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission after a high dosage of radiation was discovered in water near the plant.

The NRC announced Wednesday has initiated a “special investigation” at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant near Huntsville ” to determine how and why a diver received a dose rate alarm during underwater work in the Unit 1 equipment pit.”……https://www.al.com/news/2018/11/browns-ferry-nuclear-plant-under-investigation-by-nrc.html

November 15, 2018 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Southern Cal Edison Reported Incident Less Than 5 Minutes Before Woolsey Fire Started — Mining Awareness +

Map of Woolsey Fire area; Red dots on E Street/Alfa Road to indicate area of Southern Cal Edison incident report. Note tanks on Alfa Rd., too. Fire maps: https://fsapps.nwcg.gov/afm/googleearth.php California Public Utilities Commission Woolsey Canyon Rd-Chatsworth substation map. Woolsey Canyon Road is easy to find with Google Earth maps, wheras Alfa Rd and E. St. […]

via Southern Cal Edison Reported Incident Less Than 5 Minutes Before Woolsey Fire Started — Mining Awareness +

November 15, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Camp Nightmare: Where Climate Denial gets a Merit Badge — Climate Denial Crock of the Week

“Christian” camp for budding science deniers. “Lord” Monckton gets my vote for Creepiest Counselor ever. This is child abuse. One corrective is the twitter hash tag #exvangelicals, which documents the horrific memories of those who have escaped the spiritual gulag of fundamentalism. Instead of going to church this morning, why not expose some of the […]

via Camp Nightmare: Where Climate Denial gets a Merit Badge — Climate Denial Crock of the Week

November 15, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Camp Nightmare: Where Climate Denial gets a Merit Badge — Climate Denial Crock of the Week

“Christian” camp for budding science deniers. “Lord” Monckton gets my vote for Creepiest Counselor ever. This is child abuse. One corrective is the twitter hash tag #exvangelicals, which documents the horrific memories of those who have escaped the spiritual gulag of fundamentalism. Instead of going to church this morning, why not expose some of the […]

via Camp Nightmare: Where Climate Denial gets a Merit Badge — Climate Denial Crock of the Week

November 15, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment