nuclear-news

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

“New nukes” company Terrestrial Energy sets up a new group to promote its (as yet non-existent) molten salt nuclear reactors.

Terrestrial Energy Forms Nuclear Innovation Working Group to Support IMSR Power Plant Development

– Bruce Power, Michael Rencheck, President and CEO — Burns & McDonnell, Glenn Neises, Nuclear Director — SNC-Lavalin, EVP and Candu Energy, President and CEO, William (Bill) A. Fox III, — Corporate Risk Associates Limited, Jasbir Sidhu, CEO — Kinectrics, David Harris, President and CEO — Laker Energy Products, Christopher Hughes, President and CEO — Promation, Mark Zimny, President and CEO — Sargent & Lundy, Michael J. Knaszak, Senior Vice President and Project Director

Advertisements

February 14, 2019 Posted by | Canada, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Theresa May says that UK is still in talks about Wylfa nuclear station plan

Wylfa Newydd: Nuclear plant talks to continue, says May  BBC 13 Feb 19, The UK government will continue talks with the company behind plans for a new nuclear power station in Anglesey, Theresa May has said.The prime minister told MPs that ministers will “support” discussions with Hitachi.

Last month the company announced it would suspend work on the £13bn Wylfa Newydd project because of rising costs.

The government said at the time it had failed to agree terms with Hitachi…….https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-politics-47229383

February 14, 2019 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

Nuclear power useless against climate change, – costly, but above all too slow to arrive

Nuclear power not a competitive option, Matt Hall, “……….relative to other low-carbon energy sources available today, nuclear power is significantly more expensive, less flexible, and impractically slow to build.

Nuclear power is expensive compared to modern renewables. The Guardian, Matt HallThe most recent cost of energy assessments from Lazard, a very reputable source, show nuclear coming in at roughly three to four times the cost of utility-scale wind or solar power. Three to four times. If this comes as a surprise, it might be because nuclear projects end up on average more than 100 per cent over budget (according to a peer-reviewed survey of 180 nuclear plants). Though next-generation reactor designs promise significant improvements, that technology is still in the works. In contrast, wind and solar power are already mature technologies, widely deployed at utility scale, and more affordable than almost every other option.

It’s commonly argued that nuclear plants provide reliable baseload generation. This is accurate, but of decreasing relevance. The challenge with electricity supply is meeting the peak load, not the base. This calls for flexible generation that can ramp up or down when needed, energy storage (of which there is an expanding array of options), and demand response (e.g. Summerside’s smart grid). Furthermore, as our energy mix becomes increasingly renewable, the need for flexibility increases and the space for always-on baseload generation decreases. Current nuclear technology, which is inflexible and relies on full-time operation to be economical, becomes increasingly impractical.

The urgency for decarbonizing our energy system has never been greater. Last year’s special report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change pushes for a halving of global net greenhouse gas emission by 2030. This involves switching the majority of our energy use to electricity, and providing that electricity from low-carbon sources. The 2030 timeframe means we need to use technologies that can be deployed quickly. While wind and solar power plants can be installed in a single year, nuclear plants typically take 10 years. Even if nuclear power were cost-effective and compatible with the future of the electricity grid, nuclear plants simply take too long to build to be a significant part of the energy system’s evolution. …….

wind and solar, supported by storage and demand response, are the leading solutions for new electricity generation in the present. And, when it comes to acting on climate change, it’s the present we need to work with.

Matt Hall is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Sustainable Design Engineering at UPEI. https://www.theguardian.pe.ca/opinion/letter-to-the-editor/opinion-nuclear-power-not-a-competitive-option-283850/

February 14, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

Byron nuclear plant could close in three years, two decades earlier than its planned retirement 

 RRStar.com By Georgette Braun , 13 Feb 19,  Staff writer , BYRON — Exelon’s Byron nuclear generating station could close as early as mid-2022 because of financial risk, some two decades earlier than its planned retirement.

The company said in a Feb. 8 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that the Byron plant and two others — Braidwood and Dresden — are showing “increased signs of economic distress which could lead to an early retirement in a market that does not currently compensate them for their unique contribution to grid resiliency and their ability to produce large amounts of energy without carbon and air pollution.”

Crain’s Chicago Business said the earliest the Byron plant could close would be mid-2022, the same for Braidwood, and as early as 2021 for Dresden.  https://www.rrstar.com/news/20190213/byron-nuclear-plant-could-close-in-three-years-two-decades-earlier-than-its-planned-retirement

February 14, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, USA | Leave a comment

Japan’s Kyushu Electric to scrap aging nuclear reactor at Genkai

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Kyushu Electric Power Co Inc said on Wednesday it will decommission an aging reactor at its Genkai nuclear plant as the country’s power industry struggles to meet new nuclear safety standards set after the 2011 Fukushima disaster. 13 Feb 19, 

This will bring the number of reactors being scrapped to 17 since the meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi plant nearly eight years ago.

The move comes as Japan’s return to nuclear power is slowly gathering pace, although the industry still faces public opposition, court challenges and unfavorable economics.

Kyushu Electric will scrap the No.2 reactor at the Genkai plant, about 930 km (580 miles) west of Tokyo. ……

Many of Japan’s reactors remain shut, with only nine operating, while they undergo relicensing to meet new standards set after the Fukushima crisis highlighted shortcomings in regulation.

Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-japan-nuclear-kyushu-elec-pwr/japans-kyushu-electric-to-scrap-aging-nuclear-reactor-at-genkai-idUSKCN1Q20Y3

February 14, 2019 Posted by | business and costs, Japan, safety | Leave a comment

UK government’s Radioactive Waste Management (RWM) looking for nuclear waste dump site in regions of England and Wales

Western Telegraph 12th Feb 2019 , RADIOACTIVE waste could one day be stored deep beneath the Pembrokeshire
countryside. Radioactive Waste Management (RWM) – set up by the government
– is on the look-out for a suitable site in which to dispose of radioactive
waste. England and Wales have been divided into sub-regions, three of which
include parts of Pembrokeshire, which could potentially house an
underground geological disposal facility (GDF). St Davids and its
surrounding coastline, up to North Wales, and an area starting at St Brides
Bay and leading south-east to Swansea are among the regions being assessed
for their suitability.
https://www.westerntelegraph.co.uk/news/17427410.pembrokeshire-is-on-the-list-of-potential-nuclear-waste-storage-sites/

February 14, 2019 Posted by | UK, wastes | Leave a comment

UK Labour plans for a “just transition” to a green economy

Guardian 12th Feb 2019, Labour is to set out how the UK can move swiftly to a decarbonised future
to tackle the unfolding climate crisis and put “meat on the bones” of its
promise to create hundreds of thousands of high-skilled, unionised green
jobs. Trade unionists and industry leaders will come together with
academics, engineers and public institutions to build detailed regional
plans setting out the challenges and opportunities ahead.

The proposal, due to be outlined on Wednesday by Rebecca Long-Bailey, the shadow business
secretary, will involve a national call for evidence and a series of
regional events to build “a detailed action plan” to maximise the benefits
of moving to a zero-carbon future. A future Labour government would oversee
an economic revolution to tackle the climate crisis, using the full power
of the state to decarbonise the economy and create hundreds of thousands of
green jobs in struggling towns and cities across the UK. “We’re launching
an unprecedented call for evidence about what this means for your town,
your city, your region,” she said. “We want to bring unions, industry,
universities, the public sector and others together to build this vision
out into a practical reality.”

Labour says a key plank of its plan will be
to ensure a “just transition” to high quality green jobs for those
currently working in carbon-emitting industries. To do that it will have to
persuade its trade union backers, who represent people in high-carbon
industries, that there is a viable economic alternative. The party hopes
that once the evidence has been collected it will form the basis of a green
paper to be published in autumn 2019 at party conference, with plans for
how each region might move to a decarbonised future.
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/12/labour-plan-decarbonise-uk-green-jobs-climate-crisis

February 14, 2019 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

Californian company’s plan for deep burial of nuclear wastes , close to the point of production

Compelo 12 th Feb 2019 , California-based Deep Isolation claims to have the answer to the world’s
spent nuclear fuel problem, with more than 30 countries playing host to a
growing stockpile of radioactive waste. Based out of California, the
company has developed technology it claims can solve a problem its CEO
Elizabeth Muller argues is second only to climate change in terms of its
environmental severity. Capitalising on advances in drilling technology,
the solution involves storing the spent nuclear fuel in corrosion-resistant
canisters and placing them in drillholes deep beneath the earth at sites
near where the waste was produced so as to minimise costs.
https://www.compelo.com/energy/news/deep-isolation-spent-nuclear-fuel/

February 14, 2019 Posted by | USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Ireland’s Radiation scrutiny now transfers to HIQA 

Radiation scrutiny now transfers to HIQA  Jhttps://www.lawsociety.ie/gazette/Top-Stories/radiation-scrutiny-transfers-to-hiqa/

13 Feb 19, Last month’s transposition of European Council Directive 2013/59/EURATOM into Irish law means that HIQA is now responsible for regulating medical exposure to ionising radiation.

The new law covers dental x-rays, hospital CT scans, mammograms and radiotherapy received as part of cancer treatment.

Treatment

A medical exposure to ionising radiation is when a patient receives ionising radiation as part of their diagnosis or treatment.

The transposition into Irish law confers new statutory functions on HIQA under the EU’s (Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Dangers Arising from Medical Exposure to Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2018 SI No. 256.

HIQA’s John Tuffy said: “Generally the risks associated with receiving medical exposure to ionising radiation can be considered very low.

“However, as procedures that involve ionising radiation carry varying levels of risk dependent on the dose given, it is important that all radiation doses are kept as low as practically possible.

Vital

“It is vital that patients are only exposed when the benefits of receiving the exposure outweigh the risks.”

“The new legislation has given HIQA regulatory powers to ensure that appropriate processes are in place to protect patients in public and private healthcare facilities for the first time.”

Last month’s transposition of European Council Directive 2013/59/EURATOM into Irish law means that HIQA is now responsible for regulating medical exposure to ionising radiation.

The new law covers dental x-rays, hospital CT scans, mammograms and radiotherapy received as part of cancer treatment.

Treatment

A medical exposure to ionising radiation is when a patient receives ionising radiation as part of their diagnosis or treatment.

The transposition into Irish law confers new statutory functions on HIQA under the EU’s (Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Dangers Arising from Medical Exposure to Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2018 SI No. 256.

HIQA’s John Tuffy said: “Generally the risks associated with receiving medical exposure to ionising radiation can be considered very low.

“However, as procedures that involve ionising radiation carry varying levels of risk dependent on the dose given, it is important that all radiation doses are kept as low as practically possible.

Vital

“It is vital that patients are only exposed when the benefits of receiving the exposure outweigh the risks.”

“The new legislation has given HIQA regulatory powers to ensure that appropriate processes are in place to protect patients in public and private healthcare facilities for the first time.”   

Last month’s transposition of European Council Directive 2013/59/EURATOM into Irish law means that HIQA is now responsible for regulating medical exposure to ionising radiation.

The new law covers dental x-rays, hospital CT scans, mammograms and radiotherapy received as part of cancer treatment.

Treatment

A medical exposure to ionising radiation is when a patient receives ionising radiation as part of their diagnosis or treatment.

The transposition into Irish law confers new statutory functions on HIQA under the EU’s (Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Dangers Arising from Medical Exposure to Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2018 SI No. 256.

HIQA’s John Tuffy said: “Generally the risks associated with receiving medical exposure to ionising radiation can be considered very low.

“However, as procedures that involve ionising radiation carry varying levels of risk dependent on the dose given, it is important that all radiation doses are kept as low as practically possible.

Vital

“It is vital that patients are only exposed when the benefits of receiving the exposure outweigh the risks.”

“The new legislation has given HIQA regulatory powers to ensure that appropriate processes are in place to protect patients in public and private healthcare facilities for the first time.”

Last month’s transposition of European Council Directive 2013/59/EURATOM into Irish law means that HIQA is now responsible for regulating medical exposure to ionising radiation.

The new law covers dental x-rays, hospital CT scans, mammograms and radiotherapy received as part of cancer treatment.

Treatment

A medical exposure to ionising radiation is when a patient receives ionising radiation as part of their diagnosis or treatment.

The transposition into Irish law confers new statutory functions on HIQA under the EU’s (Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Dangers Arising from Medical Exposure to Ionising Radiation) Regulations 2018 SI No. 256.

HIQA’s John Tuffy said: “Generally the risks associated with receiving medical exposure to ionising radiation can be considered very low.

“However, as procedures that involve ionising radiation carry varying levels of risk dependent on the dose given, it is important that all radiation doses are kept as low as practically possible.

Vital

“It is vital that patients are only exposed when the benefits of receiving the exposure outweigh the risks.”

“The new legislation has given HIQA regulatory powers to ensure that appropriate processes are in place to protect patients in public and private healthcare facilities for the first time.”

February 14, 2019 Posted by | Ireland, radiation | Leave a comment

   Global warming temperatures to rise by 1.5 Celsius in 5 years – India to get knocked out

   https://www.skymetweather.com/content/global-news/global-warming-temperatures-to-rise-by-1-5-celsius-in-5-years-india-to-get-knocked-out/  11 February 2019 – Global warming in the recent years has comparatively become a larger threat to the world. And the latest trends of extreme weather activities are a clear testimony to this fact. Though, there are certain sections of the society seriously thinking in this regard and trying their bit in bringing about awareness among people across the world, the vicious destruction of our planet continues.

According to meteorological reports, by 2023 global warming could temporarily hit 1.5˚C above pre-industrial levels. It will be the first time to ever happen and the results could be disastrous. There are also 10% chances of us experiencing a year where the average temperature will rise more than 1.5˚C.

So far, the hottest year on record was 2016, when Earth heated up to 1.11˚C above pre-industrial levels. Even though the heat has gone down in the past two years, it’s unfortunately only a small part of a long-term upward trend.

Due to certain natural factors, the heat we experience varies from year to year. However, scientists have estimated that we’re warming the planet about 0.2˚C in every 10 years.

Researches also state that, this rise in temperature would adversely affect regions prone to extreme weather conditions. This includes regions like South America, parts of Australia, Africa and India’s coastal areas.

Therefore, till the time we radically scale back our greenhouse gas emissions, the probability of each year creating some kind of a record cannot be ruled out.

– See more at: https://www.skymetweather.com/content/global-news/global-warming-temperatures-to-rise-by-1-5-celsius-in-5-years-india-to-get-knocked-out/#sthash.GK1czMcc.dpuf  

February 12, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

 Climate change increasingly ranks as the world’s most pressing security threat – Pew Poll

Climate Change, ISIS and Cyberattacks Are Seen as the World’s Top Threats in a New Pew Poll TIME, ByCASEY QUACKENBUSH , 11 Feb 19

 Climate change increasingly ranks as the world’s most pressing security threat, with terrorism and cyberattacks also topping the list, according to a new survey by the Washington-based Pew Research Center.

In a poll of 26 countries, 13 considered the warming planet the number one concern. This was followed by the threat of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which eight countries, including Russia, France, Indonesia and Nigeria, rated as the top threat. Four nations, including Japan and the U.S., cited cyberattacks as the most urgent issue………http://time.com/5526558/climate-change-top-threat-pew-poll/

February 12, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

Suddenly no public access to Scotland’s nuclear history

Scotland’s nuclear history suddenly disappears from public archive, The National, 11 Feb 19, ACCIDENT reports and safety reviews into nuclear weapons and atomic energy programmes in Scotland are among hundreds of documents to have been suddenly withdrawn from public view.

According to a report on the Sunday Post website, following a “security review” the files at the National Archives in Kew were removed so that they can no longer be accessed by the public.

The move has been described as “very concerning” by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

The documents relate to a range of topics on Britain’s nuclear weapons and atomic energy programmes, including the nuclear power plant in Dounreay, Caithness, as well as Chapelcross in Dumfries and Galloway and the Hunterston A and Hunterston B power stations which are located in Ayrshire.

It is not entirely clear why the files have been removed.

All that is known at this point is that Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) ordered a security review and that a decision will be made on whether or not the documents should remain public……….

“Just before Christmas all the files were withdrawn from the National Archive without any explanation or communication,” said Jon Agar, professor of science and technology studies at University College London

“It was replaced with a message that if you need to see this, you have to put in an FOI request.

“Almost everything we would want to know on the public record which allows us to trace the history of nuclear establishments across the country have been essentially withdrawn from public sight…….. Ian Chamberlain of CND described the withdrawal of the files as “very concerning”.

“It seems that even if this archive is made public again parts of it will continue to be withheld, but a crucial part of the democratic process is to learn from past mistakes,” he said. https://www.thenational.scot/news/17423745.scotlands-nuclear-history-suddenly-disappears-from-public-archive/

February 12, 2019 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, UK | Leave a comment

Russia’s very threatening new 100-megaton underwater nuclear doomsday device,

The real purpose of Russia’s 100-megaton underwater nuclear doomsday device, Business Insider ALEX LOCKIE, FEB 12, 2019,

February 12, 2019 Posted by | Russia, weapons and war | Leave a comment

RED CROSS URGES NETHERLANDS TO SIGN UN NUCLEAR WEAPONS BAN

https://nltimes.nl/2019/02/11/red-cross-urges-netherlands-sign-un-nuclear-weapons-ban

The Red Cross shared an anti-nuclear weapons video on social media on Monday. “We do this to get more awareness about nuclear weapons”, spokesperson Iris van Deinse explained to the broadcaster. “And especially of the effect of such a nuclear weapon.”

The video focuses on the question: Would you rather die in a nuclear attack, or survive it? “It’s certainly an intense video. But the effects of a nuclear weapon are also very intense. It is something you sometimes do not realize, if that’s what the discussion is about. We therefore find it important to show it. Our relief workers in Japan are still helping people after the nuclear disaster in 1945. Because they get cancer, or children are born with mutations. Help remains necessary.”

According to Van Deinse, providing aid after a nuclear attack is virtually impossible. People in a wide area are affected by extreme heat, shock waves and radiation. “We can not help in such a catastrophe. Relief workers can’t even go there because of radiation.” The aid organization also points out the environmental consequences of a nuclear attack – the large amounts of soot that end up in the atmosphere can lead to failed crops, falling temperatures and starvation.

Earlier this month both te United States and Russia withdrew from the INF treaty dating from the Cold War. The treaty, signed in 1987, bans the development of cruise missiles with a range between 500 and 5,500 kilometers. Shortly before the two countries withdrew from this treaty, the Dutch government’s advisory council for international affairs AIV said that the number of new nuclear weapons and the increased tensions between countries that own such weapons . The AIV advised the Netherlands to raise this issue with the UN.

February 12, 2019 Posted by | EUROPE, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Reclassifying nuclear wastes: Mayor of Richland, and Tri-City Development Council argue in favour of this

Update old definitions about nuclear waste to speed safe cleanup https://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/update-old-definitions-about-nuclear-waste-to-speed-safe-cleanup/ February 10, 2019 How can we expect to effectively address this problem if we aren’t even willing to accurately define it?   By Robert Thompson and Carl Adrian

The U.S. Department of Energy recently released new estimates for the cost of cleaning up the Hanford nuclear site in central Washington state. That number could now reach a staggering $677 billion, with active cleanup ending in the year 2079. Under this scenario the federal government would spend, on average, more than $11 billion dollars every year for 60 years.

As leaders in the Tri-Cities — the community closest to and most impacted by the Hanford site — we believe  that the United States simply must find a way to effectively address this problem at a price that taxpayers can afford. One clear step in the right direction is to begin managing the waste based on its actual contents and risks rather than an arbitrary definition developed decades ago.

To summarize, DOE is responsible for the cleanup of waste left over from decades of nuclear-weapons production, including approximately 53 million gallons in underground tanks at Hanford. Federal laws passed in 1954 and 1982 guide the agency’s management of this waste but do not clearly specify how the waste should be categorized. Rather than making a determination, the agency simply decided in the early 1980s to manage much of our nation’s defense nuclear waste as high-level, requiring the highest standards, regardless of the actual amount of radioactivity it contains or risk it poses.

DOE is now considering moving away from this well-intentioned, but overly costly and inaccurate approach. Instead of arbitrarily making decisions based solely on the origin of the waste, agency officials are proposing to manage this waste based on its actual physical characteristics. This is the same method that countries like France and Germany use to guide their waste-management decisions, and would bring the U.S. closer to international standards established by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Why does this matter? A risk-based approach would allow DOE to manage, treat and dispose of defense waste in a manner that accurately reflects its contents and the potential risks it poses to human health and the environment. Doing so could reduce cleanup costs by tens of billions of dollars, and has the potential to significantly speed up remediation efforts at Hanford and elsewhere.

DOE has been accused of proposing this change in order to save money and shirk its responsibilities, but this new approach would not mean that the federal government can simply walk away from its cleanup obligations. The federal government has committed to many billions of dollars’ worth of remediation work at Hanford and elsewhere, and budget shortfalls mean that important cleanup projects often don’t get started soon enough, or take too long to complete.

Treating waste based on its actual contents would allow DOE to direct the resources they save toward other important cleanup efforts that would otherwise languish, potentially for years to come. It could also open up pathways to get some waste out of Washington state more quickly. These waste streams would otherwise remain at Hanford for many more years, or even permanently.

In their letter to DOE opposing this proposed change, Gov. Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson stated, “our communities deserve to be heard on this dangerous idea.” We find it frustrating that in this case the governor and AG aren’t listening to the community that is most directly impacted by Hanford cleanup.

We do not feel that it is a dangerous idea and, to the contrary, believe that it will allow other important cleanup work at the Hanford site to happen faster.

Ultimately, there is high-level defense nuclear waste at Hanford and elsewhere that does need to be treated and disposed of in a deep geological repository. It is some of the most challenging and expensive material that our country has to address. We should not, however, delay cleanup progress and waste taxpayer funds by unnecessarily managing lower-level waste, which scientists agree can be safely disposed at permitted sites, in the same manner. After all, how can we expect to effectively address this problem if we aren’t even willing to accurately define it?

The Tri-City community wants the Hanford site remediated as quickly and effectively as possible, but we see no need to make an already difficult job even harder. Our hope is for DOE to meaningfully engage with the appropriate regulatory bodies, including the Washington State Department of Ecology, to determine, in a technically justified manner, that more waste can be managed as low-level.

Importantly, this will require the state government and our elected officials to keep an open mind and make a genuine effort to reach a reasonable consensus. If they are successful, it will open the door for faster, less costly remediation outside of Washington state while still allowing the work to be accomplished safely and responsibly.

We can then turn our attention and resources to other high-priority cleanup efforts at Hanford, and we will all be better off for it.

Robert Thompson is mayor of the City of Richland, the city closest to the Hanford site.

Carl Adrian is president of the Tri-City Development Council, which has advocated for the Tri-Cities on Hanford-related matters since 1963.

February 12, 2019 Posted by | wastes, USA, Reference | Leave a comment