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UK Consumers face financial burden of future nuclear projects even before they are built

New UK nuclear plants could be paid for upfront through energy bills, Consumers face financial burden of future projects even before they are built Ft.com, David Sheppard and Harry Dempsey, 22 July 19, 

 The UK government has thrown its backing behind proposals to finance new nuclear plants by having taxpayers pay upfront through their energy bills as it looks to reinvigorate a sector beset by cancellations and high costs. The consultation on the new financing model, which aims to lower overall costs by having consumers fund future nuclear projects before they are built, comes as the government targets cutting carbon emissions to net zero by 2050.

Half of all new nuclear projects planned in the UK have collapsed in the past year after failing to secure the necessary private financing, including Hitachi’s decision to suspend the £20bn Wylfa plant in north Wales and Toshiba’s cancellation of its development in Moorside, Cumbria. Seven of the UK’s eight existing nuclear plants are set to close by 2030.

But the proposal is likely to face criticism for loading risks on to consumers and the government at a time when renewable alternatives to nuclear like wind and solar are rapidly becoming cheaper. Boris Johnson, who is widely expected to become prime minister later this week, has in the past supported nuclear projects but also criticised their high costs.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which is launching a three-month consultation on the proposals, said it believed the new financing model had the “potential to reduce the cost of raising private finance . . . thereby reducing consumer bills”.

France’s state-backed EDF Energy has been a vocal champion for the proposed model, known as Regulated Asset Base or RAB, after the cost of its Hinkley Point project in Somerset was heavily criticised for its cost to consumers.

BEIS said using an RAB model for future projects was suitable as companies such as EDF would look to replicate the Hinkley Point design in future plants. EDF said on Monday that its proposed Sizewell C plant would be a “near replica” and therefore “cheaper to construct and finance”. …..

Greenpeace UK’s chief scientist Doug Parr criticised the proposal saying it would shift liabilities from private investors to taxpayers. “The nuclear industry has gone in just 10 years from saying they need no subsidies to asking bill payers to fork out for expensive power plants that don’t even exist yet, and may never,” Mr Parr said.

The government is expected to release its highly anticipated energy white paper in summer, which will indicate future electricity generation plans, with the UK’s 2013 energy strategy widely seen as defunct due to the faltering nuclear projects. https://www.ft.com/content/e2cf07ae-acaa-11e9-8030-530adfa879c2

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July 23, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, politics, UK | Leave a comment

NuScale, realising there’s no real market for small nuclear reactors, pins its hopes on mass orders from tax-payer funded military

Advanced US nukes need a boost; is the Pentagon the answer? As proponents for the fuel seek to establish a commercial domestic market, federal PPAs are seen as key to unlocking private investments. Utility Dive By Catherine Morehouse  July 19, 2019 “……  the large-scale reactors that are the norm across the U.S. don’t fit in with the growing trend toward smaller, decentralized power.

Small, advanced nuclear reactors better fit that mold, but have yet to enter the market. So the key question, say stakeholders, is how to spur that initial investment and establish a commercial domestic market, with a loftier goal of establishing the U.S. as a nuclear power export leader.

“……..you really are going to need to have that public involvement to persuade the private sector to roll along,” – Daniel Poneman, former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy, and current president and CEO of nuclear developer Centrus

One potential solution floated at the conference was federal power purchase agreements between the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Department of Energy (DOE). 

A public-private partnership

“I think that the Department of Defense is a logical first customer for these reactors, especially micro reactors that are under development that can be deployed in remote regions,” Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, who chairs the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, told the New Nuclear Capital audience on Tuesday……..

DOD’s ability to purchase in bulk and “underwrite an investment that may not have an immediate commercial appeal,” makes it an ideal first customer, said Poneman. And that initial investment is key.

It “really helps to have that, frankly, that initial investment from an investor that is looking at their returns not in quarterly earning statements but in the long-term security payoffs,” said Poneman. “Then when they make that initial major investment, it’s the cost of the very first one that’s always very, very high. And sometimes you find a cost curve that declines really quite steeply as you make more.”

Currently, a lot of capital being invested in the nuclear space comes from “eccentric billionaires who want to save the world,” Managing Director of Private Equity at Growth Capital Services James Magowan said at the conference. This poses a problem when trying to bring in “real venture capitalists,” whose first question is “Who’s your customer? Do you have a customer?” 

To that end, “the suggestion that the DOD could step up and be a customer is a great one, I think that solves an initial customer problem,” he said. But in order to establish a domestic market, more players need to be involved.

The DOD has shown interest in advanced nuclear technology, Murkowski told reporters, making them a “likely candidate” for investment. DOD did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Building a domestic market

Many in the nuclear industry argue that establishing the U.S. as a nuclear export leader is essential to both national security as well as global decarbonization. While the Pentagon can get things rolling for small-scale nuclear, utilities will be essential to building out the market as buyers.

“I think you see utilities, particularly in Canada, stepping up with the Canadian government to take on that market-making role and we look forward to similar discussions here in the U.S.,” Donald Wolf, president and CEO of Advanced Reactor Concepts, a U.S.-based developer, said at the New Nuclear Capital Conference. “Before we, in effect, push these new designs on foreign countries, it really helps to say we built it here first. We’ve improved it at home, and it’s safe for us.”

And some developers are moving to establish those markets for small reactors with municipal power systems, which make for more attractive first customers than IOUs, according to Colbert. Municipal power systems have access to a lower weighted cost of capital, around 3%-4%, compared to IOUs’ approximately 8%-10%. 

NuScale has jointly pursued both DOD and the Utah Associated Municipal Power Association (UAMP) as first customers. ……

“If you look at nuclear, the market for energy … is pretty well known,” said Chris Colbert, Chief Strategy Officer at nuclear developer NuScale  . “What’s not so well known is how do you get through the nuclear regulatory process, the [Nuclear Regulatory Commission] process.”

While safety remains a paramount concern for nuclear power, many in the industry say they no longer view public perception as a major problem.

“How do we tell the masses the progress we’re making? …….https://www.utilitydive.com/news/advanced-us-nukes-need-a-boost-is-the-pentagon-the-answer/559088/

 

July 23, 2019 Posted by | marketing, USA | Leave a comment

Nuclear company SNC-Lavalin in a bit more of a mess?

SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. warns its 2019 results could be significantly lower than anticipated, largely due to cost overruns at some construction projects and says it will undergo a reorganization to exit or section off its poorer performing segments. More coming.

July 23, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, Canada | Leave a comment

Lies and deceptions surrounding the planned costly bailout of Ohio’s nuclear power plants

There’s still time to say no to Ohio’s costly nuclear bailout   https://www.crainscleveland.com/opinion/personal-view-theres-still-time-say-no-ohios-costly-nuclear-bailout  Jeff Barge  21 July 19, There may have been a case once for Ohio to subsidize FirstEnergy Solutions’ two nuclear plants in Ohio. But the company’s deceit and dishonesty in providing false and misleading information to the state legislature and the public now make that virtually impossible. That may be why the bailout failed to pass as scheduled on July 17 by one vote and may not be brought up again until Aug. 1.

July 22, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, Legal, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Tokyo Electric Power Company to close down Fukushima Daini nuclear plant

TEPCO to decommission Fukushima Daini nuclear plant, https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2019/07/4fe439832736-tepco-to-decommission-fukushima-daini-nuclear-plant.html KYODO NEWS – 20 July 19  Tokyo, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. will formally decide to decommission the Fukushima Daini nuclear plant after informing the prefecture’s governor of its policy as early as this month, a company source said Friday.Excluding the nearby Daiichi, crippled by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster, it is the first time that the utility, also known as TEPCO, has decided to decommission a nuclear plant.

The decommissioning of all four nuclear reactors at Daini will likely require more than 40 years and some 280 billion yen ($2.6 billion) in costs, the source said. If realized, all 10 nuclear reactors in Fukushima Prefecture will be scrapped.

Closure of the Daiichi plant, which suffered core meltdowns at three of its six reactors, has already been decided.

After telling Fukushima Gov. Masao Uchibori about the policy, it may be formally approved at a TEPCO board meeting, scheduled at the end of this month, the source said.

The Daini complex was also hit by tsunami waves in the 2011 disaster and temporarily lost reactor cooling functions. But unlike the Daiichi plant, it escaped meltdowns.

Since the disaster, the decommissioning in Japan of 21 nuclear reactors, including those at Daini, has been decided.

For the Tokyo-headquartered power company, the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant in Niigata Prefecture will be its only nuclear complex.

In June last year, TEPCO President Tomoaki Kobayakawa told the governor that the company is leaning toward scrapping all four reactors at the Daini plant. A project team was later formed at the utility and looked into whether that is possible, according to the source.

The prefecture has demanded the utility scrap the reactors, saying their existence would hamper its reconstruction efforts.

July 20, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, Japan | Leave a comment

Ohio Delays Bill to Bail Out Nuclear and Coal Plants, Gut Renewable Spending

Ohio Delays Bill to Bail Out Nuclear and Coal Plants, Gut Renewable Spending

A setback for House Bill 6, with House and Senate versions at odds. But FirstEnergy’s threat to shutter plants without state support could force final passage next month.  GreenTech Media,  Ohio lawmakers have delayed a critical vote on a controversial energy bill that would charge the state’s utility customers hundreds of millions of dollars to subsidize two nuclear power plants that their owner, bankrupt utility FirstEnergy Solutions, has threatened to close without financial support.On Wednesday, the Ohio House of Representatives failed to bring to a vote House Bill 6, forcing the legislature to put off consideration of the bill until it reconvenes in August. House Speaker Larry Householder said the late-night decision was due to the absence of four representatives who planned to vote yes on the bill, adding that the House would “tentatively” take it up again on Aug. 1. ……

Other states, including New YorkIllinois and New Jersey, have given financially struggling nuclear power plants incentives to keep their carbon-free generation capacity running, as part of a broader policy push toward decarbonizing their energy sectors.

An outlier among state nuclear bailout plans

But Ohio’s bill is different, opponents say, because it also guts the state’s energy efficiency spending and renewable energy mandates — something that Ohio’s Republican legislators have been trying to do for years.

HB 6 would also shift the costs of some of the country’s oldest coal-fired power plants from utilities to ratepayers for a decade to come. The result, opponents say, will be higher electric bills, more pollution and reduced investment and innovation in modern energy infrastructure for the state.

The bill would replace today’s monthly surcharges on utility customers’ bills, which now pay for the state’s energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates, with a new set of lower surcharges. These will pay for FirstEnergy’s two nuclear power plants, as well as two coal-fired power plants operated by Ohio Valley Electric Corp. (OVEC) and jointly owned by the state’s investor-owned utilities. …….

as opponents including the Union of Concerned ScientistsThe Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council have pointed out, monthly payments for energy efficiency and renewable energy represent investments in lower bills and cleaner energy for Ohio ratepayers. HB 6 ends those investments, in exchange for monthly payments that at their best support out-of-market payments for nuclear power plants, and at their worst help keep some of the state’s worst-performing and polluting coal plants running far past their logical retirement date.

Efficiency, renewables, natural gas and consumers groups are opposed

The Senate version of HB 6 differs from the original House bill’s approach to moving utility funding away from efficiency and renewable energy and toward nuclear and coal subsidies, Neil Waggoner, Ohio campaign representative for the Sierra Club, said in a Tuesday interview.

For example, the House version of the bill would have entirely eliminated Ohio’s current 12.5-percent-by-2026 RPS and cut all the monthly surcharges paying for energy efficiency and demand-reduction programs, which have saved Ohio customers $5.1 billion from 2009 to 2017, according to the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance.

But the version passed by the Senate opts for changing the targets for both programs in ways that will effectively end further investment, he said. For the efficiency standard, the bill will reduce today’s top energy-efficiency targets for utilities from 22.2 percent to 17.2 percent — a measure that many of the state’s utilities have likely already achieved — while expanding options for large industrial customers to opt out of paying. …..

HB 6 is being opposed by groups representing residential ratepayers and commercial-industrial energy users that worry it will increase energy prices and undermine free-market energy competition. Competing natural-gas-fired power plant owners are also crying foul, with one, LS Power, threatening this week to end a planned 500-megawatt expansion of its Troy, Ohio facility if HB 6 is passed.

HB 6 does provide $20 million a year, amounting to a total of $140 million through 2026, to support utility-scale solar development, including six solar farms already being built that might have lost funding under previous versions of the bill. And the Senate stripped a House amendment that would have allowed county residents to block wind farm projects on unincorporated land via referendum, even if construction had already begun.

As for the argument that HB 6 was necessary to keep FirstEnergy’s carbon-free nuclear plants up and running, “if we want to have a conversation about keeping carbon emissions in Ohio low, we need to talk about how we replace these nuclear plants with clean energy,” Waggoner said. “The legislature isn’t asking that question. They have never had that question in mind. Their only concern from day one has been how…[to] increase these customer bills to bail out these plants.”

Rains noted that another amendment to HB 6 added this week would weaken the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio’s oversight of how FirstEnergy, as the company to receive the “clean air credits” to be created by HB 6, spends its money.

“Language supporting annual audits for recipients from the clean air credits program was dropped in favor of much more flexible disclosures by qualifying firms to the commission on an annual basis,” he wrote. https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/ohio-delays-bill-to-bail-out-nuclear-and-coal-plants-gut-efficiency-and-ren#gs.qa5wl6

July 20, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, politics, USA | Leave a comment

Reduced U.S. nuclear safety oversight will save money for the industry

Nuclear Industry Looks to Save Money Under Reduced U.S. Safety Oversight, Insurance Journal , By Ellen Knickmeyer | July 19, 2019  Fewer mock commando raids to test nuclear power plants’ defenses against terrorist attacks. Fewer, smaller government inspections for plant safety issues. Less notice to the public and to state governors when problems arise.They’re part of the money-saving rollbacks sought by the country’s nuclear industry under President Donald Trump and already approved or pending approval by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, largely with little input from the general public.

The nuclear power industry says the safety culture at the U.S. nuclear industry — 40 years after partial meltdown of a nuclear reactor at Three Mile Island — is “exceptional” and merits the easing of government inspections. ,,,,,

Opponents say the changes are bringing the administration’s business-friendly, rule-cutting mission to an industry — nuclear reactors — where the stakes are too high to cut corners.

While many of the regulatory rollbacks happening at other agencies under the current administration may be concerning, “there aren’t many that come with the existential risks of a nuclear reactor having a malfunction,” said Geoff Fettus, an attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council on nuclear issues.

This week, the NRC released staff recommendations for rollbacks in safety inspections for the 90-plus U.S. nuclear power plants and for less flagging of plant problems for the public. Democratic lawmakers and one NRC commissioner expressed concern about the safety risks and urged the commission to seek broader public comment before proceeding.

The country’s nuclear regulators were looking at “far-reaching changes to the NRC’s regulatory regime without first actively conducting robust public outreach and engagement,” New Jersey Democrat Frank Pallone Jr., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said in a letter to NRC Chairwoman Kristine Svinicki..

Svinicki and two other NRC commissioners did not respond Wednesday to requests for comment made through the agency’s public affairs staff. NRC public affairs director David Castelveter said the NRC would respond directly to lawmakers on Pallone’s letter.

A fourth commissioner, Jeff Baran, spoke out Tuesday, saying he opposed cutting inspections and reducing oversight. Baran called for more public input on proposed rollbacks.

Nuclear regulators post notices of meetings on proposed rollbacks on oversight of nuclear power plants on the NRC website. Lawmakers complained there’s been scant notice to the public at large about the meetings or proposals.

In general, according to attendance logs, the rollbacks are being hashed out at meetings attended almost solely by NRC staff and nuclear industry representatives. Occasionally, a single reporter or representative for private groups monitoring or opposing nuclear power is shown as attending.
U.S. nuclear plant operators have seen their operating costs rise as the country’s nuclear fleet ages. Competition from cheaper natural gas and renewables is increasing marketplace pressure on nuclear power providers, making the financial costs of complying with NRC regulation ever more of an issue…….

Commissioners have been moving more assertively to cut regulation requirements for the nuclear industry under the Trump administration, which has now nominated or renominated all four current members of the five-member board.

Edwin Lyman, a nuclear safety expert with the Union of Concerned Scientists non-profit group, pointed to a board move last fall, when the NRC cut the frequency of commission-run mock commando raids at nuclear power plants.

The drills are meant to test whether attackers would be able to reach the heart of a nuclear reactor.

Lyman said the security changes “are jeopardizing public health and safety by restricting the NRC’s ability to ensure that nuclear plants are sufficiently protected against radiological sabotage attacks.”

In January, in one of the comparatively few widely reported changes, commissioners rejected staff recommendations for making nuclear power plants harden themselves against Fukushima-scale natural disasters.

New recommendations by staff made public Tuesday would cut the time and scope of annual plant inspections. They also would change how the NRC flags safety issues at plants for the public and for local state officials.

Some of the changes would require a vote by NRC commissioners…….
This week’s staff recommendations for rollbacks in government oversight are “just the tip of the iceberg,” Lyman said. https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2019/07/19/532838.htm

July 20, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, safety, USA | Leave a comment

U.S. Bill: he Radiation Exposure Compensation Act Amendments of 2019

RECA bill calls for congressional apology to victims of radiation exposure,   http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/114180-reca-bill-calls-for-congressional-apology-to-victims-of-radiation-exposure18 Jul 2019, By Mar-Vic Cagurangan – For Variety  

HAGÅTÑA — The Radiation Exposure Compensation Act Amendments of 2019, officially introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday, includes a congressional apology to individuals exposed to radiation while either working in or living near uranium mines or downwind from nuclear weapon test sites.

The bill, introduced by New Mexico Congressman Ben Ray Lujan and cosponsored by Guam Delegate Michael San Nicolas, would expand the coverage of the RECA program to include Guam and the Northern Marianas.

The RECA program is set to expire in 2022. The bill, if enacted into law, would extend the Radiation Exposure Compensation Trust Fund until 2045.

Other jurisdictions covered by the proposed RECA expansion are New Mexico, Idaho, Colorado, Arizona, Utah, Texas, Wyoming, Oregon, Washington, South Dakota, North Dakota and Nevada.

“Tens of thousands of individuals, including miners, transporters, and other employees who worked directly in uranium mines, along with communities located near test sites for nuclear weapons, were exposed during the mid-1900s to dangerous radiation that has left communities struggling from cancer, birth defects, and other illnesses,” states a press release from Lujan’s office.

The RECA amendment legislation provides health and monetary compensations for individuals who were exposed to high levels of radiation that caused sickness, cancer and deaths in identified jurisdictions.

A similar bill was introduced by Sen. Mike Crapo in the U.S. Senate.

The 35th Guam Legislature is scheduled today, Thursday, to hold a public hearing on Resolution 94-35, supporting the passage of Crapo’s S. 947.

The bill does not include the CNMI.

In August 2018, CNMI Delegate Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan said the Northern Marianas should also be considered “downwinders.”

“Perhaps, because the [Northern] Marianas was not represented in Congress in 2005, we were not included in a congressionally mandated study of how fallout from nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands may have harmed people on downwind islands,” Sablan said in an August 2018 letter to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. “I think that inequity needs to be addressed.”

July 18, 2019 Posted by | employment, politics, radiation, USA | Leave a comment

UK’s Sizewell C nuclear project not likely to provide many local jobs

East Anglian Daily Times 14th July 2019 Anti-nuclear campaigners have disputed the number of jobs that a new power
station on the Suffolk coast will create – and say it will not provide
enough long-term opportunities. EDF Energy says the Sizewell C nuclear
plant is expected to provide 25,000 jobs over the 10-year construction
period with 5,600 workers on site at its peak, and says it is “absolutely
committed” to creating local jobs, skills and training opportunities. It
says the project will provide up to £200million a year to boost the
county’s economy, and create 900 full-time jobs once operational.

But Together Against Sizewell C (TASC) has cast doubt on the job numbers. EDF
has already said that £14billion Sizewell C will be 20% cheaper to build
because Hinkley construction techniques will be mirrored, grid connections
are already available and it will use different finance models. However,
TASC fears this could mean a transfer of skills, with possibly a large part
of Hinkley C’s experienced workforce moving to Sizewell.

https://www.eadt.co.uk/news/sizewell-c-edf-energy-tasc-1-6159158

July 15, 2019 Posted by | employment, UK | Leave a comment

UK’s new nuclear funding model would leave taxpayers liable for rising costs or delays.

New UK nuclear funding model could leave taxpayers liable, Guardian,  Jillian Ambrose, Energy correspondent 14 Jul 2019

Ministers are expected to announce plans to bolster nuclear industry this week,  The government will set out plans to resuscitate the UK’s struggling nuclear ambitions with a new scheme which would leave taxpayers liable for rising costs or delays.The funding model, expected this week, could help bankroll the multibillion pound plans for a follow-on to EDF Energy’s Hinkley Point C project in Somerset, which ministers aim to build at the Sizewell site in Suffolk.

It could also resurrect the dormant plans for a £16bn new nuclear reactor at the Wylfa project in North Wales, which fell apart last year due to the high costs of nuclear construction.

Government officials are expected to reveal a new financial framework based on the model being used to finance the £4.2bn Thames Tideway tunnel.

Under those plans, the government has allowed the super-sewer’s developers to charge customers upfront for the project, and agreed to cover cost overruns above 30% of the budget and step in as a lender if funding dries up.

The nuclear plans are expected to be unveiled before parliament’s summer recess at the end of this week, alongside a long-awaited energy white paper.

The policy roadmap will set out the government’s plans for the energy sector as the economy moves towards the UK’s target to reduce emissions to net zero by 2050.

The industry is expected to have three months to respond to an official consultation before ministers decide whether to move ahead with the scheme…..

The plans would hand developers an upfront regulated return on their investment at each new phase of the project. This could encourage more investment from infrastructure and pension funds and better borrowing terms for the developer.

Government officials are under pressure to find a new way to finance nuclear projects after the National Audit Office condemned the 35-year deal to support the Hinkley Point project through energy bills at a cost of £92.50 for every megawatt-hour of electricity it produces.

The average electricity price in the UK last year was between £55 and £65 per megawatt-hour.

The watchdog accused ministers of putting energy bill payers on the hook for a “risky and expensive” project which offers “uncertain strategic and economic benefits”.

The new financing plan has already raised concerns that applying the Tideway model to a nuclear project that costs £20bn and takes around a decade to build could leave taxpayers exposed to a far higher financial risk.

Nuclear projects have suffered high-profile delays and multibillion-pound cost overruns in recent years, making them almost impossible to finance without state intervention.

EDF said last month that its struggling French nuclear project at Flamanvillecould be delayed by another three years to repair eight faulty weldings discovered at the site.

The latest delay could push Flamanville’s start date, originally in 2012, to 2022. The project was expected to cost about €3bn when construction began but the latest estimates put its cost at almost €11bn……… https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jul/14/new-uk-nuclear-funding-model-could-leave-taxpayers-liable-edf-sizewell

July 15, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, politics, UK | Leave a comment

Tax-payer funding absolutely critical to Russia’s nuclear industry

State support pivotal to Russia’s nuclear sector, says report, WNN 12 July 2019

Russia’s nuclear power industry consists of 89 enterprises that are owned by the state-run joint stock company Atomic Energy Power Corporation (AEPC), or Atomenergoprom, its Russian name.

Since commissioning its first, five-megawatt, nuclear power plant, in Obninsk in 1954, Russia has been one of the world’s leading countries in nuclear power generation, S&P says, and the country plays an important role in all parts of the nuclear cycle, from mining to construction.

The report – What Makes Russia’s Nuclear Sector Competitive – says state support includes capacity-supply agreements, ad hoc equity contributions from the government, and low nuclear liabilities that accrue only after 2011……….

“We expect domestic nuclear capacity to increase only moderately because electricity demand in Russia is stagnating, given only modest GDP growth, a significant potential for energy savings, and the government’s intention to avoid raising electricity prices through additional increases in capacity payments,” the report says.

The key risks, according to S&P, concern international projects: tighter requirements for new builds, which are likely to mean potential delays – “as seen with” the Hanhikivi project in Finland; and, nuclear phase-out policies in Western Europe that “could weigh on exports in the longer run”.

“That said, we believe exports of fuel and enrichment services should be resilient in the next several years because Russia mostly exports to nuclear-supportive countries under long-term contracts,” the report says.

“Meanwhile, treatment of nuclear waste or decommissioning services could increase in importance,” it adds.

AEPC has “solid” profitability and financial metrics compared with international and local peers, S&P says, which provides “financial capacity” for new nuclear power construction, domestically and abroad.

Although Russia is involved in a “record number” of international nuclear power construction projects, the prime contractor is AEPC’s unrated sister entity Atomstroyexport, and AEPC is only directly involved in two projects, Hanhikivi in Finland (34%) and Akkuyu in Turkey (96%), the report notes.

AEPC covers all stages of the civil nuclear cycle,  from uranium extraction (about 13% of global production) through enrichment and fuel fabrication (about 36% and 17% global market shares) to electricity generation in Russia. It is the sole operator of nuclear plants with 29.1 GW, or 12% of Russia’s total installed capacity, and 18% of the country’s electricity production, at ten plants and 35 units in operation. http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/S-P-report-on-Russia

July 13, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, politics, Russia | Leave a comment

The nuclear industry cries poor, wants bailouts, BUT LOOK WHAT THEY PAY THEIR EXECUTIVES!

Christine Layman  . Three Mile Island Survivors (Facebook) 6 July 19, The PA nuclear industry claims it needs a $500 million dollar a year bailout because they are unable to be competitive in the market place and yet, First Energy paid their top 7 executives more than $25 million combined in 2018 alone. Sounds like they are making plenty of money to me!

SAY NO TO ANY NUCLEAR BAILOUT IN PA!

7 First Energy executives were paid more than $25 million in 2018

July 9, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

£1.68bn pre-tax loss forHorizon Nuclear Power, builder for suspended Wylfa Newydd project

BBC 5th July 2019 The company behind plans to build a new nuclear power station on Anglesey has reported a £1.68bn pre-tax loss. Work at Wylfa Newydd was suspended in
January by Hitachi due to rising costs. The latest accounts filed by its
subsidiary Horizon Nuclear Power Ltd show it cut the value of the land and
equipment by £1.52bn as it does not intend to build a new power station.

The accounts also show that staff redundancies and winding up work also
cost £127m. Horizon will now be put into a “suspended state” following the
release of most of its workforce and termination of most of its commercial
contracts, according to its annual report.

A report by the Welsh Affairs Committee said the UK government should encourage Hitachi to sell the site if it is not prepared to resume work. Horizon previously said its main
planning permission was being considered, as it keeps its options open.
“They are going ahead with the application because they’ve done so much
work already, it’s worth spending the additional money to finish that
work,” said Dr Edward Jones, economics lecturer at Bangor University.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-48888093

July 8, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, UK | Leave a comment

French government wants an independent audit of EDF’s Flamanville nuclear plant

Reuters 5th July 2019 The French government has requested an independent audit of EDF’s
(EDF.PA) Flamanville nuclear plant, which faces new cost overruns and
delays of up to three years after a regulator ordered repairs last month.
ASN, the French nuclear watchdog, said that state-owned EDF would have to
repair eight faulty weldings in the reactor’s containment building,
adding that it had rejected a request to delay repairs until 2024.
France’s Economy minister Bruno Le Maire told BFM television on Friday
that “incidents” at Flamanville, northern France, were
“unacceptable”, adding that he had asked a former executive with car
maker PSA (PEUP.PA), Jean-Martin Folz, to conduct an independent inquiry.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-edf-nuclearpower-flamanville/france-asks-for-independent-audit-of-edfs-flamanville-nuclear-plant-idUKKCN1U0268?rpc=401&

July 8, 2019 Posted by | Arclight's Vision, business and costs, France, politics | Leave a comment

Britain’s nuclear power projects not economically viable, and adding to global warming

Nuclear power is helping to drive the climate crisis, Guardian, 3 July 19  Linda Rogers says the CBI has its head in the sand over nuclear reactors and Iain Climie wants politicians prepared to fund action to combat the climate emergency

Has the Confederation of British Industry got its head in the sand, or in the record levels of carbon-intensive concrete just poured at the Hinkley C nuclear site (Build more nuclear reactors to help climate crisis, says CBI, 28 June)? Nuclear power, apart from destroying biodiversity throughout its life cycle, produces up to 37 times the CO2 emissions of renewable energy sources, owing partly to the mining and refining of uranium. The impact of this process on people and the environment is not included in the rationale for nuclear power in the UK.

As the CBI looks for investment from abroad, UK taxpayers will pick up the bill for the likely time and cost overruns of new nuclear build under the regulated asset-based funding proposals so welcomed by the CBI. Nuclear has failed to achieve the investment needed so far because it is no longer seen as economically viable. Even Hitachi (one of the world’s largest multinationals) cannot magic Wylfa Newydd into a commercially viable business. In January this year, Hitachi announced it had failed to squeeze the UK government for the very high levels of subsidies desired by large investors upfront for Wylfa. Nobody can afford the costs or the many risks attached to building new nuclear power stations.
Linda Rogers

July 4, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, climate change, politics, UK | Leave a comment