The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

 Swedish insurance group Länsförsäkringar cuts off investment to nuclear weapons.

ICAN. 9 Oct 21, Last week, Swedish insurance group Länsförsäkringar, which has over $40 billion in assets, named the TPNW in its policy as a reason not to invest in nuclear weapons business. Our work to cut off funding for weapons of mass destruction is starting to pay off and we expect more financial institutions to follow suit.

October 9, 2021 Posted by | business and costs, Sweden, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Swedish government decides to increase interim storage capacity for nuclear waste

The Government has decided to allow a capacity increase of the interim
storage facility for spent nuclear fuel, pending a repository for final
disposal being constructed and put into operation. An intermediate decision
on interim storage is necessary to safeguard the energy supply in the
coming years.

The Government is prioritising and working as swiftly as
possible to prepare the decision on the repository. In the Government’s
assessment, it will be a matter of months before such a decision can be
made. However, the permit process following a government decision will take
additional time.

Without a valid permit for increased interim storage in
place before the end of 2023, Sweden’s electricity generation could be
adversely affected. This is why an intermediate decision on interim storage
is necessary.

The Government is examining how spent nuclear fuel and other
nuclear waste will be disposed of. In the next step, the Government will
refer the evaluation of new research on the protective capability of the
copper canister in relation to both copper corrosion and the planned cast
iron insert to the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority and the Swedish
National Council for Nuclear Waste.

In the consultation process, the
Government wants these authorities to determine whether the article on
copper corrosion and the research to which the article refers provide new
information that may be of significance to the Government’s decision on
the case.

 Swedish Government 27th Aug 2021

August 30, 2021 Posted by | Sweden, wastes | Leave a comment

Sweden’s nuclear waste problem may mean closure of 5 reactors by 2028

Five Swedish reactors risk closure by 2028 due to tardy nuclear waste decision,  Reuters, 6 May 21Five Swedish nuclear reactors may need to close between 2024 and 2028 because a temporary site for storing spent fuel will soon be full and the government has yet to approve a final waste repository, their operating companies said on Wednesday.

The Forsmark 4 reactor risks closure in 2024, followed in 2025 by Forsmark 3, Ringhals 3 and 4 and finally Forsmark 1 in 2028, the operators said in urgent market messages posted via power exchange Nord Pool.Ringhals is owned by a consortium comprising Vattenfall (VATN.UL) and Uniper (UN01.DE), while Forsmark is owned by the same two companies in addition to Fortum (FORTUM.HE) and Skelleftea Kraft.A Swedish government decision on used nuclear fuel storage must be made no later than Aug. 31 this year to avoid exceeding the permit for the interim storage site a Oskarshamn, the firms added……..

May 6, 2021 Posted by | Sweden, wastes | Leave a comment

Swedish council votes in favour of nuclear waste disposal facility

Swedish council votes in favour of nuclear waste disposal facility, Energy Live, 19 Oct 20, The final decision now lies with the Swedish Government and is the last remaining decision point for developer SKB to obtain the construction licence for the repository in Forsmark.
The Municipality Council of Östhammar in Sweden has voted in favour of plans to build a geological disposal facility (GDF) for spent nuclear fuel. ……
The final decision now lies with the Swedish Government and is the last remaining decision point for SKB to obtain the construction licence for the repository in Forsmark……..

October 20, 2020 Posted by | Sweden, wastes | Leave a comment

Sweden gets a new Nuclear Emergency Plan

Nuclear Engineering International 22d May 2020, Sweden’s Radiation Safety Authority (SSM) announced this week, that inaccordance with an SSM proposal, the government had decided on new emergency zones for operations with ionising radiation.

For Swedish nuclear power plants, this means an internal and an external emergency zone as well
as a planning zone with an approximate extent of 5, 25 and 100 kilometres
respectively. “The change is important in order to improve the
possibility of implementing effective protective measures in connection
with a nuclear accident,” SSM said.

In 2017, SSM, in collaboration with the Swedish Agency for Social Protection and Emergency Preparedness, the County Administrative Boards in Uppsala, Kalmar, Hallands, Södermanland,
Västmanland and Skåne and the municipality of Lund and the Rescue
Services South, reported an assignment to the government where the agency
proposed to make emergency preparedness zones.

The Government has now
decided on a new regulation (2003: 789) on accident prevention, which means
that the emergency zones for nuclear facilities are being redone, in
accordance with that proposal. In the zones, iodine tablets should be
pre-distributed, the population should be able to be alerted quickly and
there must be a planning for evacuation and indoor stay. Evacuation of the
internal emergency zone must be prioritised over evacuation of the external
emergency zone.

A planning zone will also be introduced where there will be
a planning for evacuation based on radiation from the ground cover
radiation, a planning for indoor living and a planning for limited extra
distribution of iodine tablets. “This means, when the emergency zones are
fully implemented, that Sweden meets international requirements for
emergency preparedness for these operations, while lessons learned from the
nuclear accident in Fukushima have been taken care of, said SSM specialist
Jan Johansson.

May 26, 2020 Posted by | safety, Sweden | Leave a comment

Sweden’s wind power on the way to putting nuclear out of business

Giant Wind Park Starting Up Is Another Blow to Nuclear Industry

A surge in renewable energy output in the Nordic region has sent power prices below the level where some nuclear plants are profitable. Bloomberg Green, By Lars Paulsson April 8, 2020, Sweden’s biggest wind farm began producing power this month, and the region’s nuclear reactors are feeling the heat.Vasa Vind AB’s Askalen started commercial output on April 1, increasing supplies in a market already bloated by a massive surplus of water for power generation. A day later, two units at Vattenfall AB’s Forsmark nuclear plant north of Stockholm curbed output by about 50%. Two reactors at the utility’s Ringhals plant are halted because of low power prices.

While there’s no direct link between those events, it’s the latest sign of how renewable energy is crowding out traditional power sources across Europe. The 288-megawatt facility in northern Sweden will boost the nation’s wind output further, after a 50% jump in the first quarter from a year earlier because of a very breezy winter.

“This could mean more frequent periods with rock bottom power prices, forcing conventional generators off the grid, especially when windy conditions coincide with high hydro output,” said Oliver Metcalfe, lead analyst for onshore wind research at BloombergNEF in London.

BNEF forecasts that global onshore wind capacity will gain 9% to more than 66 gigawatts this year, a forecast scaled back from the 24% expansion first anticipated.

That will help push out more traditional coal, gas and nuclear plants from the energy system. The German and U.K. coal power industries, among others, have already been decimated by a surge in green power.

Sweden will install more than 4.2 gigawatts of new onshore wind this year and next, according to BNEF. The Nordic region’s biggest economy will rely heavily on wind to replace old nuclear reactors in the future. The Askalen park has installed 80 Vestas A/S’s V136 turbines, which are as high as 112 meters…….

April 9, 2020 Posted by | renewable, Sweden | Leave a comment

Sweden’s Vattenfall AB’s 44-year-old Ringhals-1 shut down, as energy prices fall

Cheap Energy Just Shut Down a Nuclear Reactor  (Bloomberg) 1 April 20, — The latest victim of the global slump in energy prices is an old Swedish nuclear reactor that will stay offline until at least the end of summer. Electricity prices in the Nordic market were plunging even before the coronavirus began to cripple economies and hurt demand worldwide. That’s because of the build-up of a huge surplus of future supply in the form of water in the r eservoirs and snow-pack in the mountains. Vattenfall AB’s 44-year-old Ringhals-1 facility will be switched off until at least the end of September, the operator said in a statement with the Nord Pool exchange. It was already down for maintenance since March 13.

Vattenfall AB’s 44-year-old Ringhals-1 facility will be switched off until at least the end of September……
As European prices slump, weighed down by lower demand and the slide in fuel and carbon costs, more plants will struggle to make enough profit. In the U.K., margins at some gas-fired plants could drop as much as 30% year-on-year if demand recovers slowly, according to Aurora Energy Research.

April 2, 2020 Posted by | business and costs, Sweden | Leave a comment

Sweden now faces years of nuclear reactor shutdowns and waste disposal problems

Sweden prepares for a decade of nuclear decommissioning, NS Energy, By Kristina Gillin  27 Feb 2020 ,

Sweden is preparing to dismantle and demolish six large power reactors on three sites over the coming years.

By the end of 2020, half of Sweden’s nuclear reactors will have been permanently shut down for decommissioning. The six large reactors are expected to undergo nuclear decommissioning in Sweden over the next decade.

Besides these, the Ågesta prototype reactor, a combined heat and power plant is about to commence dismantling.

Nuclear decommissioning at Sweden’s Barsebäck nuclear power plant

The twin units at Barsebäck,  a few miles across the straight from Denmark, ceased to generate power in 1999 and 2005, respectively.

After shutdown, all spent fuel was removed and shipped to Sweden’s central interim storage facility (Clab) in Oskarshamn. Major decontamination of systems was also done early. However, dismantling had to wait, due to a lack of facilities for storage or disposal of decommissioning waste………

Funding and nuclear waste disposal in Sweden

Owners of nuclear power plants in Sweden have a statutory duty to dispose of their wastes. They are also required to set aside funding for waste management and nuclear decommissioning in Sweden. The funding is held in the Nuclear Waste Fund, a segregated Swedish government fund.

To fulfil the obligations, they jointly own the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co (SKB). SKB’s scope covers disposal of most radioactive waste streams, interim storage of spent fuel and transportation between the various sites.

SKB is also responsible for compiling cost estimates for decommissioning and waste management every three years.

This to ensure that payments into the Nuclear Waste Fund are sufficient to cover future costs.

According to the 2019 estimates, the total cost of waste disposal, spent fuel storage and decommissioning is approximately SEK 147 billion (around €14 billion). Of this, about SEK 53 billion (around €5 billion) has been spent to date.

These figures include most of SKB’s scope but exclude the costs of near-surface disposal facilities for very low-level waste at Oskarshamn, Ringhals and Forsmark.

The majority of low- and intermediate-level waste from all Swedish reactors will be disposed of in SFR, a shallow geological repository for short-lived waste on the Forsmark nuclear site.

SFR has been in operation since 1988 but is currently licensed for operational waste only. To accommodate decommissioning waste, SKB plans to expand SFR’s capacity from 63,000 to 180,000 m3. An application for the expansion was submitted in 2014.

Pending regulatory approvals, construction of the new rock vaults will take place from 2023 to 2029.

March 2, 2020 Posted by | decommission reactor, Sweden | Leave a comment

Swedish Parliament Rejects Proposal to Halt Nuclear Shutdown

Swedish Parliament Rejects Proposal to Halt Nuclear Shutdown, Bloomberg,  By Niclas Rolander, January 23, 2020,

A majority in the Swedish parliament rejected a proposal from the nationalist Sweden Democrats to stop Vattenfall AB’s plans to close two nuclear reactors, in a victory for the Social Democrat-led government.

The Sweden Democrats had support from three parties but failed to secure a majority. Its proposal to give the state-owned utility instructions to reverse its plans to wind down the Ringhals 1 reactor and to restart another reactor that was shuttered Dec. 30 lost by a single vote on Wednesday afternoon.

Vattenfall has repeatedly said it isn’t economically viable to keep running the two reactors, which were commissioned in 1975 and 1976, respectively. The company also operates two newer reactors at the plant, which produces a sixth of Sweden’s electricity, and is owned jointly with Germany’s Uniper SE, which holds a 29.6% stake through a subsidiary. …….

January 23, 2020 Posted by | politics, Sweden | Leave a comment

Swedish accusations against Assange – always a political motive on behalf of USA

We need to ask ourselves why the focus is not on the crimes perpetrated by those involved in war crimes. Why is an Australian citizen being subjected to US espionage laws even though he was never on US soil? More importantly, why should an Australian citizen have allegiance to the US?

Australia and the Morrison government now face the stark choice. Do we defend an Australian citizen facing rendition and an effective death sentence, because of Trump – a President facing impeachment. Or do we abandon him?

The Swedish case against Assange was always political,,By Greg Barns and Alysia Brooks, November 20, 2019 It is almost a decade since Julian Assange woke to discover, on the front page of a Swedish newspaper, that Swedish authorities had decided to pursue him on allegations of sexual misconduct. Immediately, Julian presented himself to the police station to make a statement and clear his name. After speaking with prosecutors, he was told he could leave the country; so he did.

It was only after his arrival in London that an Interpol notice was issued for his arrest. In the meantime, Assange sought and was granted asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy on the grounds that he would be subjected to grave human rights abuses should he be extradited to the US. Despite years of his legal team requesting that Swedish authorities provide assurances that he would not be extradited onwards to the US, the opportunity for Assange to formally clear his name was never afforded to him. Nor was the right to the presumption of innocence. Many in the media still falsely claim that charges were laid. It was trial by media.
The political nature of the Swedish case became apparent from the beginning. As early as 2013, emails from the UK Crown Prosecution Service, released under Freedom of Information, demonstrated that the prosecutors wanted to drop the case. However, pressure was placed on them to keep it open – and they were told not to get “cold feet”. The London-based organisation Women Against Rape point out that the case was pursued with “unusual zeal” and concluded it was only  pursued for the simple fact that he has uncovered war crimes.
Let’s make one thing clear, any sexual misconduct allegations should be treated seriously. But, as Women Against Rape and the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture point out, this case was never about protecting the women involved; it was about ensuring the focus was kept off the war crimes that  WikiLeaks exposed, and assassinating Assange’s character.
The decision now to drop the investigation is welcome news for Assange and his legal team, and removes the possibility of extradition from Sweden to the US. However, the fact remains that an Australian citizen is being pursued by the Trump administration for political purposes and is facing serious human rights violations if extradited to the US.

Currently, Assange is held on remand in Belmarsh prison, in conditions that are exacerbating his already fragile health, and impeding his ability to prepare his defence. He is facing unprecedented charges under the US Espionage Act, for allegedly carrying out actions that journalists and publishers engage in as a part of their work. He is facing 175 years – an effective death sentence – for allegedly engaging in journalism.

And let’s not forget the material that was exposed by WikiLeaks. The releases included evidence of war crimes, including torture and unlawful killings, perpetrated during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and the Guantanamo files, which demonstrated that the majority of men, and children, were being held and tortured at the prison, even though they were innocent of any crime.

We need to ask ourselves why the focus is not on the crimes perpetrated by those involved in war crimes. Why is an Australian citizen being subjected to US espionage laws even though he was never on US soil? More importantly, why should an Australian citizen have allegiance to the US?

Australia and the Morrison government now face the stark choice. Do we defend an Australian citizen facing rendition and an effective death sentence, because of Trump – a President facing impeachment. Or do we abandon him?

Greg Barns is a barrister and adviser to the Australian Assange Campaign. Dr Alysia Brooks is a human rights and due process advocate.

November 21, 2019 Posted by | civil liberties, Legal, politics international, Sweden, UK | Leave a comment

Sweden’s wind power to surpass nuclear this year

Sweden’s wind power to surpass nuclear this year: lobby, Lefteris Karagiannopoulos, STOCKHOLM (Reuters) 35 Oct 19, – Sweden is set to have more wind power capability

Hydropower is Sweden’s top source of electricity, but for decades nuclear has held second place.

“Sweden has a unique opportunity to take the leadership role in the fight against climate change through the wind power expansion,” Svensk Vindenergi CEO Charlotte Unger Larson said in a statement.

The association makes quarterly forecasts based on data it collects from turbine manufacturers and project developers.

Its latest forecast for 2 GW growth was down from 2.2 GW previously.

Investment decisions corresponding to 686 MW of new wind power were made in the third quarter, it said, up from 114 MW in the second quarter. by Lefteris Karagiannopoulos; editing by Jason Neely

October 26, 2019 Posted by | renewable, Sweden | Leave a comment

Sweden says two aging nuclear reactors safe to run till 2028

Sweden says two aging nuclear reactors safe to run till 2028, OSLO (Reuters) 24 June 19 Vattenfall’s Forsmark 1 and 2 reactors in Sweden have safety clearance to operate for another decade, taking them beyond their initial 40-year planned lifetime, the Swedish radiation safety authority said on Monday……

June 25, 2019 Posted by | politics, Sweden | Leave a comment

Scandinavian farmers still impacted by radioactive fallout from Chernobyl nuclear disaster

Chernobyl: 33 Years On, Radioactive Fallout Still Impacts Scandinavian Farmers, David Nike 8 June 19

The smash-hit HBO series ‘Chernobyl’ has introduced an entire new generation to the nuclear disaster that shook the world in 1986. Initially covered up by Soviet authorities, the disaster only came to light when nuclear power stations in Sweden – hundreds of miles away – detected high levels of radiation and began to ask questions. 33 years later, radiation remains a problem in both Sweden and Norway especially for farmers.

“Who would have thought that a small northern Norwegian mountain village could be hit by a nuclear accident in Europe. Overnight we were powerless. The Chernobyl accident shows that our food production is vulnerable. It’s scary,” sheep farmer Laila Hoff from Hattfjelldal told Norwegian state broadcaster NRK. She said all meat had to be destroyed in the first year following the accident. But even now in 2019, animals in 37 Norwegian municipalities are subject to radiation testing and control before they can be slaughtered. One leading researcher says it will take “decades” for the controls to no longer be necessary.

How Chernobyl hit farming in Norway and Sweden

The radioactive substance cesium-137 takes many years to break down with an estimated half-life of 30 years. It still exists in the earth in the areas affected by the Chernobyl accident, including large parts of Norway and Sweden. The substance is taken up from the soil by plants and fungi, which in turn are eaten by sheep, reindeer and other grazing animals.

In the wake of the 1986 accident, cesium-137 spread over much of northern and central Scandinavia. The weather conditions were such that Norway and Sweden were two of the countries worst hit outside the Soviet Union. In Sweden, the areas around Uppsala, Gävle and Västerbotten were hardest hit, while in Norway the area between Trondheim and Bodø along with mountainous areas further south suffered, mainly because of rainfall.

The radiation impacted vegetation to varying degrees, but also led to radioactivity in grazing animals, primarily sheep and reindeer. In reindeer calf meat, up to 40,000 becquerels per kilogram (Bq/kg) were measured, with up to 10,000 Bq/kg in sheep meat. Norwegian authorities set the highest acceptable level in meat at just 60 Bq/kg, which led to the widespread feeding of animals with non-contaminated feed. This process of feeding livestock from contaminated pastures with non-radioactive feed for a period to reduce radioactivity in meat or milk is known as nedfôring.

June 10, 2019 Posted by | environment, Sweden | Leave a comment

Sweden’s Uppsala District Court rules against extraditing Assange to Sweden

4 June 19

Sweden’s Uppsala District Court has found in favour of Assange: the court ruled NOT to detain Assange in absentia. The preliminary investigation can proceed without Assange’s extradition to Sweden. This was always the case as Assange has always cooperated with the investigation.

Suzie Dawson on Julian Assange’s mistreatment #FreeAssange

June 4, 2019 Posted by | civil liberties, legal, Sweden | Leave a comment

Swedish court rejects effort to delay Assange hearing  29 May 19.   Stockholm: A Swedish court has rejected efforts to postpone a hearing relating to Julian Assange, a lawyer for the WikiLeaks founder says.

A Swedish prosecutor this month filed a request for Assange to be detained for a June 3 hearing about a rape allegation.

Defence lawyer Per Samuelson told Reuters he visited Assange in British custody on Friday before seeking to postpone the hearing.

“One of the reasons is that Assange’s health situation on Friday was such that it was not possible to conduct a normal conversation with him,” Samuelson said.

“I meant that it should be postponed until I had time to meet again and go through the issues in peace and quiet. I suggested no specific date and meant it should be postponed until everything was ready, but the district court has now decided that this won’t happen .

he Uppsala district court, where the hearing is due to take place, was not immediately available for comment. A prosecutors’ office spokesman declined to comment.

Sweden reopened the investigation into alleged rape, which Assange denies, in early May. It was begun in 2010 but dropped in 2017 while Assange was in refuge in Ecuador’s London embassy.

Assange was arrested in London last month after spending nearly seven years inside the embassy.

If the court order is granted, it would be the first step in a process to have Assange extradited from Britain, where he is serving a 50-week sentence for skipping bail.

US authorities are separately seeking to extradite Assange on charges relating to the public release by WikiLeaks of a cache of secret documents, and last week unveiled 17 new criminal charges against him, including espionage.

The British courts will have to rule on the two extradition requests, with the home secretary having the final say on which one takes precedence.

June 1, 2019 Posted by | civil liberties, Legal, Sweden | Leave a comment