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Germany backs a plan to put sanctions on the supply from Russia, of uranium, the fuel for Europe’s so called ”independent self-sufficient, sovereign” nuclear energy.

Russia faces threat of sanctions on nuclear power industry as Germany backs uranium ban https://www.politico.eu/article/russia-nuclear-power-uranium-plants-europe-imports-germany-sanctions-ukraine-war/

Move would hit the supply of uranium to the EU’s Russian-built reactors, as well as new nuclear projects., BY BARBARA MOENSZIA WEISEAMERICA HERNANDEZ AND LEONIE KIJEWSKI. April 29, 2022    Germany has thrown its weight behind demands to sanction uranium imports from Russia and other parts of Vladimir Putin’s civil nuclear industry in retaliation for his invasion of Ukraine, five EU diplomats told POLITICO.

Such a move could hit the supply of uranium that fuels the bloc’s Russian-built power reactors, as well as new nuclear projects managed by Russia’s Rosatom Western Europe subsidiary, based in Paris.

Four of the diplomats said sanctioning Russia’s nuclear industry was discussed in a meeting with EU ambassadors and the Commission earlier this week, with Poland and the Baltic countries leading the calls to act.

“Germany’s ambassador on Wednesday announced Berlin’s new position, saying they are not only OK with oil sanctions, but they actively support an oil phaseout, rather than just a price cap, and a ban on Russian uranium,” one EU diplomat said.

The fact that Germany, the EU’s economic powerhouse, is now on board makes the move significantly more likely. A wide range of MEPs have also asked for nuclear to be included in EU sanctions.

“It is important for the Germans, Austrians and others that the EU reduces its energy dependency on Russia across the board. This includes banning imports of Russian nuclear fuels as well. For them it is a bit of a no-brainer,” an EU diplomat said.

The European Commission is working on proposals for a sixth package of sanctions against Russia, including potentially measures targeting oil. Details are expected to be discussed with EU countries in the coming days as European governments seek to intensify pressure on Putin by cutting off the revenues from energy exports that finance his invasion of Ukraine.

It is not yet clear how soon sanctions on nuclear imports to the EU could be imposed.

But any move against Russia’s nuclear industry would not be pain free for Europeans. The EU imports almost all of its uranium from outside the bloc. About 20 percent comes from Russia, making it the second-biggest supplier to the EU after Niger.  

May 2, 2022 Posted by | Greece, politics international | Leave a comment

German government concludes that it is unwise to extend the life of its remaining nuclear power stations

Germany’s government has concluded that prolonging the runtime of its
remaining nuclear power plants is not advisable even in the current energy
crisis sparked by the Russian invasion on Ukraine. “Following a
cost-benefit analysis, a longer runtime for the three remaining nuclear
plants is not advisable even in light of the current gas crisis,” a
report drafted by the two Green Party-led ministries for climate and
economy (BMWK) and for the environment and nuclear safety (BMUV) found.

Extending the remaining plants’ runtime could only make a rather small
contribution to energy security and increase costs elsewhere, the
ministries said. “The state would have to shoulder immense risks. This
would not be appropriate.”

It further found that even if the runtime is
extended, refueling problems would mean the plants could only deliver
additional electricity by autumn 2023. The plants would have to run
somewhere between three and five years longer to make investments in staff
and infrastructure pay off and necessary security checks would further
complicate relying on the nuclear plants as a quick fix. Within that time
frame, “other options will be available to guarantee a secure power
supply despite a shortage of natural gas,” the report said.

Moreover, lawsuits against changes to the current nuclear phase-out plan would likely
be successful, the ministries added.

 Clean Energy Wire 8th March 2022

https://www.cleanenergywire.org/news/extending-nuclear-plants-runtime-not-advisable-german-govt-concludes

March 10, 2022 Posted by | Greece, politics | Leave a comment

How dare Germany oppose USA over nuclear power !

U.S., Germany clash over role of nuclear energy in green transition, By Joseph Nasr BERLIN, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Germany and the United States clashed on Friday over whether nuclear power should be part of the energy mix as rich countries race to cut emissions to limit the impact of global warming.

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, U.S. Special Climate Envoy John Kerry said that cutting emissions fast required some reliance on nuclear energy, adding that without carbon capture technology relying on gas as a stop-gap fuel amounted to ignoring the root cause of the climate crisis.

Franziska Brantner, parliamentary state secretary in the Economic Ministry and a member of the ecologist Greens, defended Germany’s plan to rely on gas a bridge fuel as it phases out nuclear and coal and expands renewables.

The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has been putting pressure on Germany to ditch the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project ……….

Asked by a moderator if Germany’s decision to shut its last nuclear plants this year did not amount to avoiding the most efficient path to a green future, said Brantner, pointing to Kerry: “No. The answer is easy, it’s ‘no’. And you gave part of the answer. You said nuclear is ‘monumentally expensive.’ Exactly. We have a much cheaper way we can go, and that’s renewables.”

Kerry and Brantner also disagreed on whether nuclear power could be transferred to poorer countries to help them cut energy emissions from coal……..

Brantner, who Greens party has it roots in the anti-nuclear movement of the 70s and 80s, said Germany would not use tax payer’s money to transfer nuclear energy know-how to developing countries given the risk of nuclear proliferation. https://www.reuters.com/markets/commodities/us-germany-clash-over-role-nuclear-energy-green-transition-2022-02-18/

February 19, 2022 Posted by | Greece, politics international | Leave a comment

Greece will never turn to nuclear energy

Greece will never turn to nuclear energy, EURACTIV.gr, 25 Oct 21,

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has said Greece would never switch to nuclear power because of frequent earthquakes in the region. However, he added that Athens would not oppose others using it.“Greece will never acquire nuclear energy because we are in an extremely seismic region,” Mitsotakis said after an EU summit on 22 October……..  https://www.euractiv.com/section/politics/short_news/greece-will-never-turn-to-nuclear-energy/

October 26, 2021 Posted by | Greece, politics | Leave a comment

Apocalyptic scenes hit Greece, as Athens besieged by fire

Little had prepared any of us on the Athens-bound flight for the sight of
the great fire-induced clouds that swept either side of the plane as it
made its descent on Friday. News of the extreme heat engulfing Greece had
spread beyond its borders all week, packaged in increasingly desperate
language.

Temperatures were breaking records few had ever imagined. If
Monday was bad, then Tuesday was worse. In some parts of the country, the
mercury had hit 47C (117F), with thermal cameras on drones recording the
ground temperature in downtown Athens at 55C.

By Wednesday, we were hearing
that entire tracts of suburban forest on the Greek capital’s northern
fringes had gone up in flames. Infernos seemingly redolent of Dante’s
hell had incinerated everything in their path; friends had lost homes;
thousands had been evacuated with residents and tourists fleeing blighted
zones by any means possible. Terraces, an Athenian’s respite against the
blazing heat, had been transformed into ash-laden no-go zones.

 Guardian 7th Aug 2021

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/07/apocalyptic-scenes-hit-greece-as-athens-besieged-by-fire

August 9, 2021 Posted by | climate change, Greece | Leave a comment

Macron dithers on nuclear power investment as issue divides France.

 Macron dithers on nuclear power investment as issue divides France.
Emmanuel Macron has been a vocal supporter of nuclear power, insisting in December that the carbon emission-free energy was key to France’s green transition. But less than a year before presidential elections, the French leader is leaving the multibillion question of adding new reactors undecided as the issue becomes increasingly divisive.

An estimated €49bn by 2025 has been earmarked to extend the working lives of France’s 56 nuclear reactors, and Macron has yet to commit to any new reactor, beside the one that
state-owned company EDF is building in Flamanville, in the north-west.

 FT 19th July 2021

https://www.ft.com/content/137841f9-1c34-4b43-bcad-5923e27c1515

July 20, 2021 Posted by | Greece, politics | Leave a comment

German grid and nuclear plant operators step up coronavirus precautions

German grid and nuclear plant operators step up coronavirus precautions,  https://www.cleanenergywire.org/news/german-grid-and-nuclear-plant-operators-step-coronavirus-precautions   Tagesspiegel
09 Mar 2020, Sören Amelang

Background  German operators of key energy infrastructure including power stations, gas and electricity grids have stepped up their precautions against a coronavirus pandemic, reports Jakob Schlandt in Tagesspiegel Background. “The primary goal is to protect employees from infection – especially employees in the system control room,” a spokesperson from power grid operator 50Hertz told the energy newsletter. Employees are no longer allowed to travel to areas classified as risky – even private trips are banned – and all other business trips are being kept to a minimum. The operator also said it had reduced visits by foreign delegations “practically to zero”. Like other transmission grid operators, 50Hertz also operates a reserve control centre as a back-up.

The company said it is prepared for worst-case scenarios. In case of emergency, the system control room and other key technical divisions can operate “self-sufficiently and largely isolated from the environment for weeks. To this end, we have staff, a lounge and a bedroom, as well as food supplies,” the spokesperson said, adding key spare parts for the grid are also available. Germany’s other transmission grid operators Tennet, Amprion and TransnetBW have similar policies, according to the article. Gas grid operator Open Grid Europe (OGE) has also put additional precautions in place to make sure gas can continue to flow to consumers, including cancelling all internal and external events that are not strictly necessary. Germany’s eleven gas grid operators also have reserve control rooms as a back-up at their disposal.

Nuclear power plant operators have also put new rules in place. RWE, for example, is disinfecting radiation meters that are regularly used by employees more often. The company has also closed visitor centres, and cancelled scheduled group visits to lower the risk of infections, a spokesperson told the publication.

March 16, 2020 Posted by | Greece, safety | Leave a comment

All use of nuclear power will end in Germany by end of 2022

Nuclear “finished” in Germany, plant operators affirm  https://www.cleanenergywire.org/news/nuclear-finished-germany-plant-operators-affirm Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung  04 Mar 2019,    Benjamin Wehrmann

The use of nuclear power in Germany will come to an end by the end of 2022 as planned, operators of the country’s remaining nuclear plants have told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in reaction to a survey in which almost half of the respondents said nuclear plants should run longer than coal plants. Energy company EnBW said that the political regulation means that “nuclear energy is finished in Germany,” adding that its two remaining plants would be deconstructed right after they are taken off the grid. Ralf Güldner, head of the German Nuclear Forum, said ending nuclear power while at the same time phasing out coal and struggling to expand the power grid could mean that Germany’s autonomous power supply security becomes threatened. However, Güldner too said the political situation was “very clear.” Plant operator Preussen-Elektra said “we certainly don’t think about any plan B.” According to the article, operators say that they will not have qualified staff anymore to keep nuclear plants running longer than agreed.

In the survey, 49.5 percent of respondents said the planned decommissioning of the last nuclear plant by 2022 and of the last coal plant by 2038 is the right order, while 44.1 percent said closing nuclear plants before coal plants is wrong from a climate perspective.

March 7, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, Greece, politics | Leave a comment

France ‘s EDF plans for new central storage site for nuclear waste – no site chosen

 PARIS, Feb 13 (Reuters) – French EDF plans new central storage site for nuclear wast state-controlled utility EDF plans to build a new central storage pool for nuclear waste but has not yet decided on a site, the company said.

French environment news site Reporterre on Tuesday wrote that EDF plans to build a central spent-fuel pool on the grounds of its Belleville-sur-Loire nuclear plant, which could receive up to 8,000 tonnes of spent fuel, the equivalent of up to about 90 reactor cores.

Spent fuel from nuclear reactors remains highly radioactive for thousands of years and all countries using nuclear energy struggle with the question of where to store it safely…….

France has a project to store long-life nuclear waste 500 metres below ground in impermeable clay in Bure, eastern France, but the plan has not yet received government approval and is strongly opposed by local groups and environmentalists.

Meanwhile, the La Hague reprocessing site acts as a de facto nuclear waste storage site as France has no permanent solution for deep geological storage. (Reporting by Geert De Clercq and Benjamin Mallet; editing by Richard Lough)

February 14, 2018 Posted by | Greece, wastes | Leave a comment

The unstoppable success of renewable energy in Germany

text-renw-GermanyRenewable energy continues to gain momentum in Germany,http://www.hydrogenfuelnews.com/renewable-energy-continues-gain-momentum-germany/8521078/  , Hydrogen Fuel News,  05 February 2015.

German Energiewende appears to be on track as the country continues to support clean power

Germany’s transition toward renewable energy, also called its Energiewende, has received some criticism over the past few years. The country is distancing itself from fossil-fuels and nuclear power, hoping to derive the majority of its electrical power from renewable sources in the coming years. A new report from Agora Energiewende, shows that the country’s transition may be right on track, despite concerns that the transition is too costly for the country.

Report predicts that Germany will receive 80% of its energy from renewable sources by 2050

According to the report, Germany is on track to meet its renewable energy goals by 2025. Beyond that, Germany is expected to receive as much as 60% of its power from renewable sourced by 2035, and 80% of its energy from renewables by 2050. The report also shows that clean energy accounts for the majority of Germany’s power, ahead of coal. The report also shows that Germany’s economy has grown by 40% since 1990, while demand for electrical power has been falling over the past several years.

Solar energy continues to receive support from German government

The German government has been showing strong support for various forms of clean power, but has been particularly interested in solar and wind power. Germany had once offered aggressive incentives meant to support the adoption of solar energy, but the country’s feed-in tariffs had proven so successful that they were considered financially unstable for the government. Though these incentives have been reduced, solar energy continues to thrive throughout Germany.

Wind energy is gaining traction in the country

Wind power has also become quite popular in Germany. Several German states have begun embracing wind energy, using large and small-scale wind farms to meet their electricity needs. Offshore wind projects have also found support from the German government. These projects have the potential to generate a large amount of electrical power and will not take up land within Germany. The government has also been promoting clean transportation, highlighting hydrogen fuel cells as the potential future of the auto industry.

February 7, 2015 Posted by | Greece, renewable | Leave a comment

Big stock exchange fall for French nuclear company EDF

graph-down-uraniumEDF Slumps After Nuclear Price Concerns Trigger Stock Downgrade http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05-16/edf-slumps-after-nuclear-price-concerns-trigger-stock-downgrade.html By Tara Patel – May 16, 2013 
Electricite de France SA, Europe’s biggest power producer, fell the most in five months in Paris.
trading after Bank of America Corp. cut its rating on the stock on concern earnings from nuclear generation will fall short.

EDF (EDF) fell as much as 5.5 percent, the biggest intraday decline since Nov. 29, and was down 4.8 percent at 17.265 euros as of 4:39 p.m. local time. The French government, which controls Paris-based EDF, is due to set wholesale prices for the company’s atomic power by the end of the year as the utility pushes for higher rates to help finance investments and cover costs. The tariff “could disappoint investors,” Arnaud Joan, an analyst at Bank of America in London, wrote in a report published today. Continue reading

May 18, 2013 Posted by | business and costs, Greece | Leave a comment

Greece finds Fukushima radiation fallout

Radioecological indexes of fallout measurements from the Fukushima nuclear accident http://sciencealerts.com/stories/2051814/Radioecological_indexes_of_fallout_measurements_from_the_Fukushima_nuclear_accident.html#.UI7UmW_A9dN  Fallout from the Fukushima nuclear accident has been monitored for about 1 month in Thessaloniki, Northern Greece. Three different radionuclides, one short-lived, one relatively long-lived and one long-lived fission product were identified in air, grass and milk samples. The 131I, 137Cs and 134Cs activity concentrations in air reached 497, 145 and 126μBqm−3, respectively on 4 April, 201These radionuclides are of particular concern regarding their transfer from the environment to population through the ingestion pathways for the assessment of the Fukushima accident consequences. Radioecological indexes (eco-indexes) of fallout measurements in the air–grass–cow-milk–man pathway for 131I were determined, as they are related to radiological impact of the Fukushima derived radionuclides on the public and environment.

October 29, 2012 Posted by | environment, Greece | Leave a comment

Greece gearing up for solar energy export industry

Greece Eyes Jobs, Growth Impulse From Solar Energy Export http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-06/greece-eyes-jobs-growth-impulse-from-solar-energy-export.html  By Paul Tugwell – Apr 5, 2012  A group led by Germany’s Fichtner GmbH & Co. KG was chosen as technical adviser forGreece’s 20- billion euro ($26.1 billion) Helios solar power project, according to the country’s committee on privatizations.

The other members of the venture are all from Greece; Kantor Management Consultants SA, the Centre for Renewable Energy Sources and the National Technical University of Athens, according to a statement from the committee posted on the Greek government’s ministerial decision website.

The Helios project, named after the ancient god of the sun, would install as many as 10 gigawatts of solar panels by 2050, enabling Greece to export power from the natural energy to other European Union countries.

April 7, 2012 Posted by | Greece, renewable | Leave a comment

Depleted uranium endangering rare seal

to protect marine mammals and other marine life from……….highly toxic materials like depleted uranium that have been deposited by the military.

Saving the world’s rarest seal from uranium, guardian Uk, 17 June 2010, Dr Anastasia Miliou was interviewed by Georgina Kenyon“....Greek conservationists from the Greek NGO, Archipelagos, work to protect endangered common dolphins and monk seals and also the region’s marine ecosystems from the effects of overfishing, shipping, and the military. Dr Anastasia Miliou, manager and head scientist from Archipelagos Institute of Marine and Environmental Research of the Aegean Sea, based on the Greek island of Samos in the eastern Aegean, explains about seals, uranium deposits and sonar   Continue reading

June 17, 2010 Posted by | environment, Greece | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Atomic Nightmare: Krümmel Accident Puts Question Mark over Germany’s Nuclear Future

Krümmel Accident Puts Question Mark over Germany’s Nuclear FutureBy SPIEGEL 13 July 09 The recent accident at the Krümmel nuclear power plant in northern Germany was more serious than was previously known. Anglea Merkel’s Christian Democrats are now finding themselves on the defensive with their plans to extend the life of German nuclear reactors………..

It was already awkward enough for Vattenfall that the accident, which resembled a similar breakdown two years ago, occurred after it had spent €300 million ($420 million) upgrading the plant. As in the 2007 incident, this time there was also a short circuit in a transformer. The reactor, which had just been started up, quickly had to be shut down again on Saturday, July 4.

Züfle was also forced to admit that the accident in the nuclear power plant was more serious than previously known. In addition to the transformer problem, he conceded, there was damage to “perhaps a few fuel elements,” namely the radioactive core of a nuclear power plant.

Atomic Nightmare: Krümmel Accident Puts Question Mark over Germany’s Nuclear Future – SPIEGEL ONLINE – News – International

July 14, 2009 Posted by | Greece, safety | , , , | Leave a comment