UK proposal to offer subsidy contracts to Russia, China and South Korea to build nuclear power stations!
Russian, Chinese and South Korean nuclear companies should be offered subsidy contracts to build reactors in the UK if they are cheaper than other projects already under development, a prominent nuclear lobbyist has said.
Tim Yeo, the former chairman of the House of Commons energy select committee, said EDF’s proposed £18bn plant at Hinkley Point, which is expected to get the go-ahead this week, should be allowed to proceed, but he urged the Government to rethink its approach to future projects.The Japanese-owned Horizon and Franco-Japanese NuGen consortia are both developing plans for reactors at sites in the UK and hope to secure approval for their technologies and subsidy deals from the Government.
Mr Yeo, the MP for South Suffolk for 32 years until the 2015 general election, now chairs New Nuclear Watch Europe, a lobby group whose members include the Korean nuclear firm Kepco. He urged the Government to “urgently examine which nuclear vendors can deliver the cheapest electricity, maximise the number of UK supply chain jobs and minimise the risk of construction delays”………..
He also advocated a new funding approach under which “most of the construction costs are funded by government borrowing throughout the construction period” to help cut financing costs. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/07/23/russia-china-and-south-korea-should-be-invited-to-build-uk-nucle/
Around a 100km drive west of St. Petersburg, on the Gulf of Finland, sits Sosnovy Bor, home to state nuclear energy giant Rosatom’s waste disposal operations. Inside a controlled perimeter, subsidiary RosRAO, the facility’s manager, has created a prototype water decontamination plant for use at Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings‘ Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station — the site of Japan’s largest nuclear disaster in March 2011.
The scrubbing facility, unveiled in June, is capable of removing tritium, or radioactive hydrogen, from nuclear-tainted water, something beyond the capabilities of the Fukushima plant’s current cleanup equipment. Distillation and electrolysis isolate and concentrate the isotope, which is then locked away in titanium. Experiments under conditions similar to those on the ground reportedly show the technology cutting wastewater’s radioactive material content to one-6,000th the initial level, making it safe for human consumption or release into the ocean.
Duplicating the facility near the Fukushima site and running it for the five years necessary to process 800,000 cu. meters of contaminated water would cost around $700 million in all. Companies in Japan and the U.S. are at work on their own facilities for tritium disposal, but the Russian plan’s cost and technological capability make it fully competitive, according to the project’s chief.
Rosatom has made other overtures to Japan. Executives from a mining and chemical unit have visited several times this year for talks with Japanese nuclear companies, aiming to cooperate on decommissioning the Fukushima plant and upgrading a reprocessing plant in Aomori Prefecture for spent nuclear fuel. Russia has amassed a wealth of expertise dealing with damaged nuclear reactors in the wake of the Chernobyl disaster, and would like Japan to draw on that knowledge, the subsidiary’s chief executive said.
Revving up nuclear technology exports is essential to re-energizing Russia’s domestic industry and breaking free of dependence on the resource sector, Moscow has decided. The nuclear business, along with the space industry, is one of the few tech-intensive sectors where the country is internationally competitive. President Vladimir Putin has leaned more heavily on leaders in Europe and emerging countries in recent years to agree to deals with Russia’s nuclear companies………..http://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/International-Relations/Japan-nuclear-cleanup-next-target-in-Russian-economic-offensive
Eskom Influence Growing In Proposed South African Nuclear Tender, AFK Insider,
While South Africa’s energy department will choose the successful vendor, Eskom, as the owner-operator of the new nuclear plants, will have a large input. David Nicholls, chief nuclear officer at Eskom, gave delegates a glimpse this week of Eskom’s vision for nuclear by defining a leading role for the state utility at the Power-Gen and DistribuTech Africa conference in Johannesburg.
A chosen vendor will lead the early process with Eskom’s input. This is how South Africa’s only operating nuclear plant, Koeberg, north of Cape Town, was built in the 1980s, he said.
Once the design base has been established with the first plant, South Africa will increasingly take charge.
Nicholls’ remarks show that Eskom is in favor of a proven standardized fleet of reactors, with sibling international plants to learn from. This indicates South Africa is likely to choose one vendor and stick with them……….. Vendors from Russia, France, South Korea, the U.S. and China are all hoping to win the lucrative South African nuclear contract.South Africa has opted for a pressurized water reactor technology,……..http://afkinsider.com/130186/eskom-influence-growing-in-proposed-south-african-nuclear-tender/
Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation has signed an operating support services deal with Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power that will see the company dispatch personnel to the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant until 2030.
Under the agreement, the Korean firm will provide main control room operators and local operator to support ENEC’s recently launched local operating subsidiary Nawah Energy Company……http://gulfbusiness.com/korea-hydro-nuclear-power-staff-operate-abu-dhabis-barakah-plant/#.V5UxYtJ97Gg
Despite years of building and development, nuclear power is on the decline in many parts of the world with its share of global electricity decreasing from 18 percent in 1996 to around 11 percent today according to the International Energy Agency.
Nuclear has become unfashionable in several countries not just because of the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters: New safety requirements mean the cost of building nuclear facilities has been rapidly mounting.
The cost of the UAE’s Barakah plant is estimated at between US$25 bn and $32 bn, most of it being paid out of state funds. The initial cost estimate of Saudi Arabia’s nuclear programme – involving French, Chinese, Argentinian and South Korean companies building facilities both for power generation and for desalination – is $80 bn.
Energy analysts say that rather than spending billions of dollars on prestige nuclear projects, subsidies should be eliminated to curtail usage and alternative energy sources should be developed.
The use of solar power is still minimal in many countries in the region yet it has enormous potential.
Following the disasters at the Chernobyl and Fukushima power plants, many countries either cancelled or put on hold projects for nuclear power facilities but in the Middle East region at least 25 plants are planned and many more are being talked about.
Some studies indicate that up to a total of 90 nuclear facilities, – both big and small – are in the pipeline………
Opponents of the plans say going nuclear in what is one of the world’s most volatile geopolitical regions poses serious safety and security issues. Among other concerns there are the eye watering costs involved in nuclear building programmes and unresolved problems over radioactive waste disposal.
The nuclear salespeople have been busy across the region in recent years: in the United Arab Emirates, the Barakah nuclear power facility in Abu Dhabi, built and operated by the South Koreans, is due to come on stream next year, aiming to supply up to 25 percent of the UAE’s electricity.
Saudi Arabia plans to have its first nuclear power plant on stream by 2022, with another 15 facilities of varying size in the pipeline. Jordan and Egypt have signed agreements with Rosatom, the Russian state nuclear conglomerate, to build and operate reactors.
Despite recent tensions between Turkey and Russia, Rosatom is continuing construction of Turkey’s first nuclear power plant on the country’s southern coast.
Tunisia and Algeria have also been in nuclear discussions with the Russians and other suppliers…….. Continue reading
China Can Cooperate With India In Nuclear Sector: Official NDTV, 22 July 16 NEW DELHI: Describing China as an “important player” in the nuclear sector, a senior Chinese state policy researcher has said it is one of the areas where it can cooperate with India, a remark which comes amidst growing strain between the two countries over the NSG issue.
Speaking in Delhi, Wenling, a senior researcher of the Chinese State Council Research Office, also made a strong pitch for long-term visas for Chinese nationals visiting India, which she said would boost bilateral trade and investments.
On areas where the two neighbours can cooperate, she said manufacturing, nuclear energy, bullet trains, tourism, education, agriculture and services industry are among the areas where they can enhance their cooperation.
“China is an important player in the nuclear sector. Chinese energy players are investing in the US market,” she remarked during a discussion with a select gathering in Delhi in the presence of Minister Counselor Cheng Guangzhong yesterday…….http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/china-can-cooperate-with-india-in-nuclear-sector-official-1434936
U.S., Mexico talk nuclear energy, Washington Examiner By 7/22/16 “….President Obama discussed the nuclear energy collaboration with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto after a meeting Friday….. we are pursuing an agreement this year on sharing civilian nuclear technology,” the president said. “This fall our new U.S.-Mexico Energy Business Council will meet for the very first time to strengthen the ties between our energy industries.”
A.P. set to be country’s nuclear power hub http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/ap-set-to-be-countrys-nuclear-power-hub/article8876943.ece SUHASINI HAIDAR
Govt. is pinning its mega plans for generating the ‘clean’ energy on coastal Andhra Pradesh.
Weeks after the government announced that U.S. company Westinghouse’s Nuclear Power Project (NPP), planned in Gujarat’s Mithi Virdi, is being moved to Andhra Pradesh, sources confirmed to The Hindu that Russian-owned Rosatom will build its next phase of six reactors in Andhra Pradesh as well.
With other States like Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Maharashtra facing local protests over NPPs, the government is now pinning its mega plans for generating the ‘clean’ energy on coastal Andhra Pradesh. In fact, if all the projects under consideration from Russia, the U.S. and NPCIL were to actually go through, NPPs in Andhra could account for more than 30,000 MW of the Modi government’s goal of 63,000 MW installed capacity by 2031. The site for the next set of six Russian reactors was discussed during A.P. Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu’s recent visit to Russia, where he met Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev.
Sources told The Hindu the project site identified, believed to be Kavali in Nellore district, could be announced during President Vladimir Putin’s visit to India in October. “It’s huge,” said Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who had led the delegation to Russia. “In Andhra Pradesh, six nuclear centres are going to be created, totalling thousands of megawatts in capacity. Of course, Andhra Pradesh will have both American and Russian participation in nuclear energy generation, but the Russians will be the first to “Make in India” in the nuclear sphere in Andhra,” Ms. Sitharaman told The Hindu.
The “American participation” referred to is the plan for Toshiba-Westinghouse to set up 6 AP1000 reactors of 1,100 megawatts each, a proposal that had run into trouble in Gujarat due to “stiff protests from farmers” during the land acquisition process for 777 hectares, a senior official in the Gujarat government said.
“In addition, Tata, Adani and Essar, which are the largest power producers in the State, were never comfortable with another giant plant being set up in the State,” the official said. During Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Washington in June 2016, NPCIL and Westinghouse had announced the move to Andhra Pradesh, with a commitment to complete the commercial agreement for 6 reactors by June 2017.
Meanwhile, another Russian project that has been hanging fire for years, to build 6 ‘VVER’ (Water-Water Energy) Reactors of 1000 MWe in West Bengal’s Haripur may also be moved to Andhra Pradesh due to local protests. “We are looking for a site in some coastal area of Andhra Pradesh where a similar reactor, which was meant for Haripur, will come up,” Dr. Sekhar Basu, now Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, had told reporters last September, although West Bengal officials told The Hindua final decision has not been taken.
State officials hope Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and West Bengal’s loss will soon be Andhra Pradesh’s gain, and the State already has the Kovvada nuclear park project for 6 1000MW reactors in Srikakulam under way. However, the coast isn’t completely clear. Kovvada has seen some protests of the kind seen at Kudankulam, Mithi Virdi and Haripur. While many local residents are unwilling to part with land, others have concerns over environmental hazards, especially given that some of the sites identified for nuclear projects are in a seismically sensitive zone, and have seen tremors in the past.
Confirming that several projects are only in “preliminary stages”, the Andhra Pradesh government’s media adviser Parkala Prabhakar told The Hindu: “The Central government has asked some more sites for other plants. We have asked the Collectors of Prakasam and Nellore to spot the sites. Once those sites are identified, the NPCIL will come for inspection to check the compatibility,” indicating that while Andhra’s nuclear power-hub dreams are in sight, they may take a while to come to fruition. (With Appaji Reddem in Vijayawada & Mahesh Langa in Ahmedabad)
Work on Russian-assisted nuclear power plant in Vietnam to begin in 2023 https://rbth.com/news/2016/07/15/work-on-russian-assisted-nuclear-power-plant-in-vietnam-to-begin-in-2023_611821 TASS
“The schedule is still set for 2028,” Tuan said. Construction will begin in 2022 or 2023, he added.
Such a timeframe is indicated in the revised master plan of Vietnam’s energy sector development, the official said.
Russia’s Rosatom is acting as a partner in the Ninh Thuan 1 nuclear power plant in Vietnam.
Japan Atomic Power to join Hitachi’s nuclear plant business in Britain http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/07/07/business/corporate-business/japan-atomic-power-join-hitachis-nuclear-plant-business-britain/#.V39eRdJ97GhJapan Atomic Power Co. will join Hitachi Ltd.’s nuclear power plant business in Britain, informed sources said Thursday.
The two companies will soon sign a cooperation agreement to make Japan Atomic Power the first Japanese power supplier to take part in an overseas nuclear power plant business in full scale.
Japan Atomic Power will become part of a project to build nuclear reactors in Britain, which is undertaken by Horizon Nuclear Power Ltd., a Hitachi unit in Britain, possibly engaging in licensing procedures for reactor construction.
Japan Atomic Power hopes that overseas operations will become a new source of revenue at a time when its nuclear reactors in Japan have been suspended following the 2011 core meltdowns at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.
Hitachi, which has no experience as a nuclear plant operator, asked for Japan Atomic Power’s cooperation over the British project.
France submits fresh plan for six nuclear plants in Jaitapur, Economic Times, By PTI | Jul 07, 2016 NEW DELHI: France has given a fresh techno-commercial proposal for building six atomic reactors in Jaitapur even as it again raised concerns over India’s civil liability law and sought “same level of protection” which are available for companies at the international level.
“All these steps will help us bring nuclear industry players from France to India. The delegation has asked to provide same level of protection to the EDF which is available at the international level,” a top EDF official told PTI.
We have also given a fresh techno-commercial proposal to NPCIL. It’s now up to the NPCIL to decide,” the official added.
The proposal includes negotiating with India for six reactors as against two, which was the case earlier. This would help bring down the cost. It also includes a proposal for localisation of technology to make the project cost effective.
NuScale to forge strong US-UK partnership with Sheffield Forgemasters, B Daily, Nick Hill, 8 July 16 NuScale Power’s aim to build a UK-U.S. partnership has made significant steps forward.
Sheffield Forgemasters International Ltd (SFIL) and NuScale are set to collaborate to develop the manufacturing techniques that will be required for the future deployment of Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) in the UK.
SFIL will forge a large civil nuclear reactor vessel head by the end of 2017, as part of a programme supported by Innovate UK, to develop forging and fabrication solutions for the nuclear industry.
NuScale Power is providing funding to support the use of the geometries required by its SMR design……..
NuScale Power will be holding a Supplier Day at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre in Sheffield on 13 July aimed at giving UK-based engineering, manufacturing and construction companies the opportunity to learn about the company’s programme of work.
NuScale is also participating in the UK Government’s competition to choose the best value SMR, aimed at seeing SMRs deployed in the UK in the 2020s. https://bdaily.co.uk/industrials/08-07-2016/nuscale-to-forge-strong-us-uk-partnership-with-sheffield-forgemasters/
China and Argentina reaffirm reactor agreement World Nuclear News, 01 July 2016 China and Argentina have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) reaffirming their plans to construct two new nuclear power reactors in the Latin American country with financing from Chinese banks. Construction of Argentina’s fourth reactor is to start early next year……..
Will China Bring Nuclear Power to Moldova?, Eurasia Net 30 June 16 China appears willing to help Moldova become a nuclear power. But for now officials in Chi?in?u seem hesitant to go all-in on atomic energy.
Chinese representatives from the state-run National Nuclear Power Company (NNPC) were in Moldova in mid-May for talks aimed at identifying opportunities to boost “bilateral cooperation in the energy sector,” according to an official statement. Chinese and Moldovan officials agreed to complete a feasibility study on “launching new projects for producing electricity in Moldova” by the end of 2016……
For now, the Moldovan government seems more interested in renewable energy. ……
Târ?u said that he advised against a nuclear power plant because of the environmental risks, plus Moldova’s lack of water resources, facilities for storing radioactive waste, and “qualified and experienced staff in this field.”
Another risk also exists: an Associated Press report in late 2015 indicated that Moldova could be atrafficking hub for nuclear materials. Criminal groups with supposed Russian ties allegedly have used the country four times since 2010 to try and pass radioactive materials to anti-Western customers (including a Moldovan undercover agent posing as a representative of the Islamic State terror organization). None of the attempts succeeded……..
energy expert Târ?u does not believe that a nuclear power plant will be built in Moldova. Thirteen years ago, Moldova also considered the possibility of a French-built nuclear power plant, but the discussions resulted in nothing . http://www.valuewalk.com/2016/06/china-nuclear-plant-moldova/
Russia’s nuclear energy expansion – a geopolitical footprint?, New Eastern Europe News, , 28 June 2016 “…….As the low oil and gas prices globally have squeezed Russia’s fossil fuel export revenues, an integral part of the country’s income, the nuclear industry has been looking for a worldwide expansion. Rosatom, Russia’s state-owned nuclear champion, has in the recent years set an ambitious course to deliver Russian nuclear power generating technology to both traditional partner countries as well as to new “developing“ economies…….
Over the past decade state-owned nuclear corporation Rosatom and its network of subsidiaries have made direct or indirect commitments to build nuclear power plants in a number of countries around the world. As stated by a Rosatom official in a recent interview, Russia has signed intergovernmental agreements for the possible construction of 36 nuclear reactors overseas and is holding “active and consistent” tendering negotiations about 21 others. It is apparent that Russia seems to be looking away from Europe and its traditional markets in search of new business opportunities for its nuclear industry.
During the Russia – ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) summit held on 19 and 20 May in Sochi, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin said his country is ready to provide a Generation III nuclear reactor technology to countries in Southeast Asia. Another Rosatom official called forAfrica to invest in nuclear energy during an annual energy forum in Johannesburg in February 2016.
The overall expansion agenda seems really impressive, but in fact only some of the projects are in an active construction phase – such as those in Belarus, China, Finland, India, and Slovakia. The projects in Egypt, Hungary, Iran and Vietnam are also likely to get the go-ahead in the near future. As for the rest, the picture has not been so rosy.
Turkey’s Akkuyu project is becoming increasingly bogged down after the relationship between Moscow and Ankara embittered last November. Ukraine has denounced an agreement with Russia on the construction of two units at the Khmelnitsky site as the two countries have become increasingly hostile due to the looming Donbas and Crimea crises. China appears to have taken over the project for the expansion of the Atucha plant in Argentina. And nuclear development on the African continent (except for South Africa and Egypt) is nowhere closer to reality in the near future.
Looking back at Europe, both Finland’s Hanhikivi and Hungary’s Paks 2 nuclear new build projects have come under scrutiny of the authorities. In the Finnish case, the main condition set by Helsinki to allow the project was for 60 per cent of the ownership of Fennovoima, the company building Hanhikivi, to be held by investors from the EU. This meant Rosatom could only be a minority owner with its 34 per cent. As with Hungary, the European Commission (EC) has launched two procedures against the government in Budapest looking into the legality of the state aid and public procurement conditions around the Paks 2 project. The EC has expressed its doubts on whether the deal with Russia fully meets EU regulations and has been concluded on market terms. The EC said it would assess if a private investor would have financed the project on similar terms or whether Hungary’s investment constitutes state aid.
Economics and geopolitics
From an economic point of view, nuclear projects are specific with their high upfront capital costs. This fact often creates major hurdles for countries or companies looking to build nuclear capacities………
Apart from the initial investment, which is undoubtedly good business for Rosatom, even more attractive is the possibility for nuclear fuel supplies the Russian-designed reactors will be using over their operational lifetime. As this is on average 30-50 years, it is a brilliant opportunity for continued revenue over a very long period of time. ……
Forced to play by the common rules, Russia has to accommodate to open competition on EU terms. Therefore, it is looking for an ambitious expansion of its nuclear exports around the world, striving to “conquer” market shares as a first mover, while major nuclear industries in Europe and Japan are plagued by shrinking business opportunities, financial problems, and negative public opinions. The real contenders to Russia’s nuclear expansion in the short and medium term will become China and the US. It only remains to be seen where the business ends and geopolitics begins. http://www.neweasterneurope.eu/articles-and-commentary/2040-russia-s-nuclear-energy-expansion-a-geopolitical-footprint
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