Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

Major News and Commentary Military and Civilian Nuclear Activities

Saturday, December 24, 2011

On the faultline frontline for Diablo Canyon

On the faultline frontline for Diablo Canyon

Month of mapping Shoreline Fault off Avila Beach is expected to end today

Nuclear fissures

Nuclear fissures

EPRI Technical Update: Decision Framework for Evaluating Advanced Nuclear Fuel Cycle Options

Year in Pictures Nature By COLUM McCANN

Year in Pictures

Nature

FEDS SIDE WITH A.G. SCHNEIDERMAN ON INDIAN POINT, REJECT EFFORTS TO HAVE SEVERE ACCIDENT ANALYSIS IGNORED IN RELICENSING

FEDS SIDE WITH A.G. SCHNEIDERMAN ON INDIAN POINT, REJECT EFFORTS TO HAVE SEVERE ACCIDENT ANALYSIS IGNORED IN RELICENSING

US NRC approves amendments to the AP1000 certified design yesterday....

Search Results

  1. [PDF] 

    NRC NEWS

    www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/news/2011/11-226.pdf
    File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
    1 day ago – NRC APPROVES RULE TO CERTIFY AMENDED AP1000 ... version of Westinghouse's AP1000 reactor design for use in the United States. ...
  2. [PDF] 

    RULEMAKING ISSUE - Nuclear Regulatory Commission

    www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/.../2011-0145scy.pdf
    File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat
    certified design, which the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC or Commission) approved in the AP1000 design certification rule (DCR), 10 CFR Part 52, ... Scope and NRC Review of Westinghouse AP1000 Amendment Application ...

Exxaro's awesome performance over the past year

Exxaro's awesome performance over the past year

Atomic Insights Kirk Sorensen – Why didn’t molten salt thorium reactors succeed the first time?

Atomic Insights:

 

Kirk Sorensen – Why didn’t molten salt thorium reactors succeed the first time?

Google Tech-Talk: “Why Didn’t Thorium MSR Happen?”

Google Tech-Talk: “Why Didn’t Thorium MSR Happen?”

Watch replay of nuclear’s future, with dash of rare earth, political intrigue

Watch replay of nuclear’s future, with dash of rare earth, political intrigue

Friday, December 23, 2011

Middle East Instability Increases Proliferation Threat, Former U.S. Official Says from GSN Daily News

Middle East Instability Increases Proliferation Threat, Former U.S. Official Says

from GSN Daily News

Announcement of “Cold Shutdown” of Fukushima Reactors Is Based On a Political Decision Rather than Science

Announcement of “Cold Shutdown” of Fukushima Reactors Is Based On a Political Decision Rather than Science

If The Reactors Are “Cold”, It May Be Because Most of the Hot Radioactive Fuel Has Leaked Out

Iran 'rehearses closing gulf oil route'

Iran 'rehearses closing gulf oil route'

Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UPI) Dec 23, 2011
Iranian naval forces launch a massive 10-day exercise Saturday near the Strait of Hormuz, the only way in and out of the Persian Gulf, in what is widely seen as a rehearsal for a threatened closure of the strategic global oil artery if the country is attacked. The Iranians have billed the Velayat-90 drill as the largest they have conducted.

Lithuania, Hitachi sign initial nuclear plant deal

Lithuania, Hitachi sign initial nuclear plant deal

Vilnius (AFP) Dec 23, 2011
Lithuania and Japan's Hitachi on Friday signed a preliminary deal on the building of a new nuclear energy facility to replace a plant closed in 2009 in the Baltic state under an EU agreement. Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius told reporters the two sides "agreed on the content of the concession agreement and its main components" with the final deal expected to be approved next year.

Editor's Note

I would like to thank all of you for following my Nuclear Wire. I am planning to continue providing nuclear news in 2012. In the interim, I would like to wish all of you and your families a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Michele Kearney

ANS Update: The Wait for the License

American Nuclear Society

The Wait for the License

By lscheele on Dec 23, 2011 01:00 am

by A. Priori (With no apologies to Clement C. Moore, Henry Livingston, or the thousands who have already parodied the original)   ‘Twas the wait for the license, When all through the site, Not a module was fitted, No matter … Continue reading
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NRC grants design certification to Westinghouse AP1000™

By lscheele on Dec 22, 2011 01:40 pm

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission voted unanimously on December 22 in favor of publishing the final certification rule for Westinghouse’s AP1000 reactor design, instructing the agency’s staff to forward the final rule, which amends Appendix D of 10 CFR Part 52, … Continue reading
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Researchers Trumpet Another Flawed Fukushima Death Study

Researchers Trumpet Another Flawed Fukushima Death Study

New US reactor work could start by February: Westinghouse CEO

New US reactor work could start by February: Westinghouse CEO

Main Panel slams govt's shoddy info-sharing / Interim report to rip response to N-disaster

Main

Panel slams govt's shoddy info-sharing / Interim report to rip response to N-disaster

Fear over India's nuclear embrace

Fear over India's nuclear embrace

U.S. Gave Iran-friendly Regimes Nuclear Technology

U.S. Gave Iran-friendly Regimes Nuclear Technology

Nuclear Energy: Profit Driven Industry “Nuclear Can Be Safe Or It Can Be Cheap … But It Can’t Be Both” by Washington's Blog

Nuclear Energy: Profit Driven Industry
“Nuclear Can Be Safe Or It Can Be Cheap … But It Can’t Be Both”

NRC's Jaczko on Nuclear Safety, New Reactors

NRC's Jaczko on Nuclear Safety, New Reactors

You Could Even Say It Glows: NRC Votes to Fast-Track a More Dangerous Nuclear Future

You Could Even Say It Glows: NRC Votes to Fast-Track a More Dangerous Nuclear Future

PG&E Ordered to Complete Seismic Studies, Same Sought for SCE/SDG&E

PG&E Ordered to Complete Seismic Studies, Same Sought for SCE/SDG&E

Entergy: small amount of tritium found in river


Entergy: small amount of tritium found in river

Indian Point's appeal of required emergency-safety review rejected

Indian Point's appeal of required emergency-safety review rejected

Veteran Firms in the Nuclear Industry Announce New Venture

Veteran Firms in the Nuclear Industry Announce New Venture
Fort Myers, FL, December 23, 2011 --(PR.com)-- Veteran Firms in the Nuclear Industry Announce New Venture Combining Expertise, Resources to Address Seismic Hazards & Risk Assessment

Owner of NY nuke plants loses NRC ruling

Owner of NY nuke plants loses NRC ruling

Westinghouse's newly designed nuclear reactors approved

Westinghouse's newly designed nuclear reactors approved

Japan will be unable to meet 2020 emission targets because of reduced nuclear power

Japan will be unable to meet 2020 emission targets because of reduced nuclear power

nlocking Energy Innovation

Unlocking Energy Innovation

The authors of Unlocking Energy Innovation describe four stages of energy innovation:

1. the creation of new options;
2. demonstration;
3. early adoption;
4. and the optimization of large-scale technologies.

U.S. clears another hurdle toward nuclear renaissance

U.S. clears another hurdle toward nuclear renaissance

Secretary Chu Statement on AP1000 Reactor Design Certification

Secretary Chu Statement on AP1000 Reactor Design Certification

December 22, 2011 - 3:25pm
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu issued the following statement today in support of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) decision to certify Westinghouse Electric’s AP1000 nuclear reactor design, a significant step towards constructing a new generation of U.S. nuclear reactors. In February 2010, the Obama Administration announced the offer of a conditional commitment for a $8.33 billion loan guarantee for the construction and operation of two AP1000 reactors at Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generation Plant in Burke, Georgia.
“The Administration and the Energy Department are committed to restarting America’s nuclear industry – creating thousands of  jobs in the years ahead and powering our nation’s homes and businesses with domestic, low-carbon energy,” said Secretary Chu. “Today’s decision certifying the AP1000 reactor design marks an important milestone towards constructing the first U.S. nuclear reactors in three decades.”
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The Energy Department’s offer of a conditional commitment supports two new 1,100 megawatt Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear reactors at the Vogtle plant, supplementing the two existing reactor units at the facility. The project is expected to create approximately 3,500 onsite construction jobs and 800 permanent jobs once the reactors become operational.
The Energy Department has also engaged in cost-share agreements with industry to provide technical assistance and application support for new reactor design certification, including for the Westinghouse AP1000. These efforts have served to help American companies lead the way in obtaining certification and licensing approvals, helping to streamline these processes for future investments in the U.S. nuclear industry.
News Media Contact: (202) 586-4940

'Talks only solution to Iran N-issue'

'Talks only solution to Iran N-issue'

New Kalpakkam N-reactor likely to be ready in 2 years: NPCIL

New Kalpakkam N-reactor likely to be ready in 2 years: NPCIL

New Kalpakkam N-reactor likely to be ready in 2 years: NPCIL

CNS Nonproliferation Course

CNS Nonproliferation Course
North Korea (DPRK) Special Collection: All CNS nonproliferation content related to North Korea http://t.co/IxVBKkg1 about 16 hours ago from TweetDeck ...
blogs.miis.edu/test/

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Could New Nuclear Reactor Have Prevented Fukushima?

Could New Nuclear Reactor Have Prevented Fukushima?

atomic power review Westinghouse AP1000 certified

atomic power review


Posted: 22 Dec 2011 01:41 PM PST
Today, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has certified the Westinghouse AP1000 pressurized water reactor design. This is a significant milestone, and with this announcement by the NRC it's clear that the COL process for Plant Vogtle and V.C. Summer stations (two reactors each station) could be complete in the first quarter of next year.

Here is the NRC's announcement on the NRC blog.

Here is American Nuclear Society's "ANS Nuclear Cafe" post on the subject.

Here is Westinghouse Electric Company's press release, including background and commentary.

4:40 PM Eastern Thursday, December 22, 2011
ATOMIC POWER REVIEW

: Markey Blasts Vote to Override NRC's Jaczko, Allow Acceleration of AP1000 Nuke Reactor

Dec 22, 2011: Markey Blasts Vote to Override NRC's Jaczko, Allow Acceleration of AP1000 Nuke Reactor
Days before Japanese earthquake and tsunami, Congressman wrote to Commission about critical safety issues with reactor design identified by senior NRC staff member
 
WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement after the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) voted to approve the final rule for the Westinghouse AP1000 design and which also granted a rule change requested by Southern Company to allow construction to begin before the NRC staff have incorporated and published all reactor design changes adopted by the Commission today. One of NRC’s longest-serving staff warned in NRC documents that the reactor’s containment could shatter “like a glass cup” due to flaws in the design of the shield building if impacted by an earthquake or commercial aircraft. In the publicly released votes on the matter, Chairman Greg Jaczko disapproved the proposal to allow the acceleration of reactor construction, Commissioner George Apostolakis voted to approve it, and Commissioner William Magwood’s vote did not refer to it. In the final vote, Chairman Jaczko was overridden by his colleagues.

“Today, the NRC has presented its holiday gifts to the nuclear industry,” said Rep. Markey, top Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee and a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. “Instead of doing all they should to protect nuclear reactors against seismically-induced ground acceleration, these Commissioners voted to approve the acceleration of reactor construction.  While they continue to slow walk the implementation of recommendations of the NRC professional staff’s Near-Term Task Force on Fukushima, they have fast-tracked construction of a reactor whose shield building could ‘shatter like a glass cup’ if impacted by an earthquake or other natural or man-made impact.”

In August, Rep. Markey sent a letter urging the rejection of the proposed acceleration of construction that the NRC today approved.  Under current regulations, construction, including safety-related construction of systems and structures that need to function during an accident, can only begin upon final approval by the NRC of a reactor design. The rule change approved today allows Southern Company to begin safety-related reactor construction at Vogtle before NRC staff incorporates the changes - which could include safety-related changes - in the final rule to the reactor design that the NRC also approved today.

Just days before the earthquake in Japan, Rep. Markey wrote a letter to the NRC urging the Commission not to approve the Westinghouse AP1000 design until serious safety concerns were addressed. One of NRC’s longest-serving staff, Dr. John Ma, had warned in NRC documents that the reactor’s containment could shatter “like a glass cup” due to flaws in the design of the shield building if impacted by an earthquake or commercial aircraft. The shield building has the critical safety function of preventing damage to the reactor that could cause fuel meltdowns and radiation releases. In May, the NRC acknowledged outstanding safety-related issues with the AP1000 design and asked Westinghouse for resolution before the Commission moved forward with final certification.
 
On December 9, Rep. Markey released the report “Regulatory Meltdown”, which documents how NRC Commissioners William Magwood, Kristine Svinicki, William Ostendorff and George Apostolakis sought to impede the NRC response to the Fukushima meltdowns by delaying the public release of and action on the recommendations made by the NRC's Near-Term Task Force on Fukushima. These four Commissioners regrettably have a history of voting against the safety recommendations. What follows is an summary of key safety-related votes on which Chairman Jaczko was outvoted by his colleagues over the past three years:

  • April 15, 2009:  The Commission voted 4-1 (Chairman Jaczko disapproved, Commissioner Svinicki approved, and the other Commissioners who voted have since left the NRC) to support a proposal to enhance the security associated with cesium chloride sources rather than to phase out the most dispersible form of the material altogether as recommended by the National Academies of Science in 2008. Cesium chloride is so dangerous that after scavengers found a small amount in Brazil in 1987 and children and others spread it on their bodies, 250 people were contaminated, 20 became ill with symptoms of radiation poisoning and 4 died.
  • June 30, 2009:  The Commission voted 2-2 (Chairman Jaczko approved, Commissioner Svinicki disapproved, and the other Commissioners who voted have since left the NRC) to defeat a staff proposal to expand the National Source Tracking System to include Category 3 radioactive sources, which the International Atomic Energy Agency says, if not safely managed or securely protected, could cause permanent injury to a person who handled them, or were otherwise in contact with them, for some hours.
  • June 1, 2010:  The Commission voted 4-1 (with only Chairman Jaczko voting to disapprove) in support of a proposal to reduce the limitation on the number of work hours for employees who perform quality control and quality verification functions at nuclear power plants.
  • September 7, 2010: The Commission voted 4-1 (with only Chairman Jaczko voting to disapprove) to support a proposal to stop having separate votes on all requests to be exempted from the requirement that ‘near-site emergency operations facilities’ be located near to the site of where the actual nuclear reactor emergencies or accidents might occur.  Licensees have instead proposed the creation of ‘centralized emergency operations facilities’ that are hundreds of miles away from the nuclear reactors located in multiple States they are intended to serve.
  • December 2, 2010: The Commission voted 4-1 (with only Chairman Jaczko voting to approve) to disapprove a proposal to require specific NRC licenses for radioactive materials that could be used to make a dirty bomb whose activity level is greater than 1/10th of “Category 3,” even though a previous Commission had supported such a proposal.  Requiring a license would have alleviated some concerns related to the potential for a terrorist to aggregate these smaller sources to create a larger improvised dirty bomb.
  • March 15, 2011:  The Commission voted 4-1 (with only Chairman Jaczko voting to disapprove) to approve a staff proposal to ignore a recommendation by NRC’s Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards to ensure that safety measures that are assumed to address the hotter reactor cores and higher pressures associated with ‘power up-rates’ (which enable nuclear reactors to produce more electricity) would work to prevent a melt-down in the event of an accident. The Advisory Committee believed that the possibility that a fire or earthquake could breach the containment of the nuclear reactor needed to be considered.

  • March 30, 2011:  The Commission voted 4-1 (with only Chairman Jaczko voting to approve) to disapprove a staff proposal to add requirements for personnel seeking access to nuclear reactor construction sites to ensure that appropriate security screening was conducted.  The Commission instead decided to rely on a voluntary Nuclear Energy Institute personnel security initiative. 
  • June 10, 2011: The Commission voted 4-1 (with Chairman Jazcko disapproving) to reject a request to further extend the NRC’s enforcement discretion policy for nuclear reactors that do not comply with the NRC’s fire protection regulations.  The path chosen by the majority of the Commission allows some nuclear power plants to go longer than eight years without identifying their fire-related safety deficiencies and taking steps to mitigate them.
  • October 12, 2011: The Commission voted 4-1 (with Chairman Jazcko disapproving) to add further consideration of the costs or burden of NRC regulations to industry by requiring NRC staff to analyze the cumulative financial impact of all regulations on licensees.
  • November 8, 2011: The Commission voted 3-2 (with Chairman Jaczko and Commissioner Ostendorff voting to approve) to disapprove a staff proposal that the Commission adopt an amendment to its Reactor Oversight Process, described as “a means to collect information about licensee performance, assess the information for its safety significance, and provide for appropriate licensee and NRC response,” to add a new performance measure related to leaks of radioactive materials from nuclear reactors.
  • December 15, 2011: The Commission voted (with Chairman Jaczko voting to support) to reject a recommendation made by the NRC’s Near-Term Task Force on Fukushima and the NRC staff review of that Task Force’s recommendation to consider all the post-Fukushima safety upgrades to be mandatory for the “adequate protection” of nuclear power plants.  The other four Commissioners said it was “premature” to approve this recommendation. Without it, all safety upgrades would be required to go through a cost-benefit analysis in order to justify implementation, and some may never be required as a result.
###

Experts discount claims of U.S. deaths from Japan radiation By Linda Carroll

Experts discount claims of U.S. deaths from Japan radiation

From the NRC Blog: The AP1000 is certified – Where do we go from here?

U.S. NRC Blog

The AP1000 is certified – Where do we go from here?

by Moderator
The NRC’s five Commissioners have approved a rule that certifies the amended AP1000 reactor design for use in the Unites States.
The Commissioners took this final step in the certification process after four years of review by the NRC’s technical staff. The staff carefully examined information from the reactor’s designer, Westinghouse, and asked thousands of additional questions to ensure the company appropriately resolved all the issues necessary to show the design is safe. The amended design includes changes to some reactor systems and it shows the AP1000 can keep the public safe even after the impact of a large commercial aircraft.
The new rule means the AP1000 is generally acceptable for use by companies interested in building and operating new U.S. nuclear power plants. Companies still have to show, however, that the reactor can be safely built and operated on a given piece of land in an environmentally acceptable way. The NRC’s Combined License process answers those site-specific questions.
Several companies submitted Combined License applications for the AP1000 while the design was still under review – NRC regulations allow this because certification must be complete before any decisions are reached on the licenses.
The NRC is now ready to complete the Combined License process for the first two AP1000 applications, one for the Vogtle site in Georgia and one for the Summer site in South Carolina. The Commission is now deciding if the applications and the NRC staff’s review meet the requirements of the Atomic Energy Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.
If the Commission concludes all the requirements are met, the NRC will be able to issue licenses for the Vogtle and Summer projects. These decisions are expected early next year.
Scott Burnell
Public Affairs Officer

NRC approves new nuclear reactor design

NRC approves new nuclear reactor design

Schneiderman touts ruling on Indian Point appeal

Schneiderman touts ruling on Indian Point appeal

A Dispatch From Japan To the Radiation Zone by CHRIS WILLIAMS

A Dispatch From Japan

To the Radiation Zone

by CHRIS WILLIAMS

Nuclear Power Remains Key To America's Energy Future By BERNARD L. WEINSTEIN

Nuclear Power Remains Key To America's Energy Future

By BERNARD L. WEINSTEIN

Generating electricity and jobs

Generating electricity and jobs

Oyster Creek nuclear power plant gets new permit, agrees to close in 2019

Oyster Creek nuclear power plant gets new permit, agrees to close in 2019

Iran’s currency collapse prompts fear of oil blockade, energy price spike

Iran’s currency collapse prompts fear of oil blockade, energy price spike

Japanese mothers rise up against nuclear power

Japanese mothers rise up against nuclear power

A movement of women are driving protests at the lack of government transparency over the Fukushima disaster

Westinghouse working on 225 MWe small modular reactors that can be constructed on 18 month schedule

GE-Hitachi Proposes to Burn U.K. Plutonium Stockpile


By Dan Yurman, December 22, 2011
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy has proposed to the U.K. government to build an advanced nuclear reactor that would consume the country’s stockpile of surplus plutonium.The technology is called PRISM, which stands for Power Reactor Innovative Small Module. If accepted, it would be very different than the other proposals to process plutonium, including those that would turn it into mixed oxide...  » Continue...

On Our Radar: India’s Growing Nuclear Sector

On Our Radar: India’s Growing Nuclear Sector

Failure Guru to Report What Went Wrong at Fukushima Reactors

Failure Guru to Report What Went Wrong at Fukushima Reactors

Hitachi, Lithuania to sign preliminary nuclear deal

Hitachi, Lithuania to sign preliminary nuclear deal

UPDATE 1-Japan to shape post-Fukushima energy options by spring

UPDATE 1-Japan to shape post-Fukushima energy options by spring

New Take on Impacts of Low Dose Radiation

New Take on Impacts of Low Dose Radiation

Berkeley Lab Researchers Find Evidence Suggesting Risk May Not Be Proportional to Dose at Low Dose Levels

Russia, U.S. ink uranium enrichment pact for 2013-2022

Russia, U.S. ink uranium enrichment pact for 2013-2022

ANS Update 12/22

American Nuclear Society

GE-Hitachi proposes to burn U.K. plutonium stockpile

By dyurman on Dec 22, 2011 01:00 am

An advanced reactor could be used to consume 112 tonnes of weapons grade material By Dan Yurman GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy has proposed to the U.K. government to build an advanced nuclear reactor that would consume the country’s stockpile of … Continue reading →
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NRC GRANTS DESIGN CERTIFICATION TO WESTINGHOUSE AP1000® Certification is Foundation for New Nuclear Plant Construction and Creation of Jobs

NRC GRANTS DESIGN CERTIFICATION TO WESTINGHOUSE AP1000®

Certification is Foundation for New Nuclear Plant Construction and Creation of Jobs

Westinghouse working on 225 MWe small modular reactors that can be constructed on 18 month schedule

Edison Electric Institute President Tom Kuhn Released the Following Statement on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Final Utility MACT Rule

Edison Electric Institute President Tom Kuhn Released the Following Statement on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Final Utility MACT Rule

PR Newswire


WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "EPA's MACT rule is the most expensive rule in the agency's history. It will require a significant number of electric generating units to design, obtain approval for and install complex controls or replacements in a very short timeframe. In some cases, it will mean that new transmission and natural gas pipelines will have to be built.
"EPA has made useful technical changes from its original proposal. Nevertheless, we believe the Administration is underestimating the complexity of implementing this rule in such a short period of time, which can create reliability challenges and even higher costs to customers. The Administration is not using all the available authorities in the Clean Air Act to coordinate implementation, to ensure electric reliability, and to avoid excessive costs."
The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) is the association of U.S. shareholder-owned electric companies. Our members serve 95 percent of the ultimate customers in the shareholder-owned segment of the industry, and represent approximately 70 percent of the U.S. electric power industry. We also have more than 65 International electric companies as Affiliate members, and more than 170 industry suppliers and related organizations as Associate members.
SOURCE Edison Electric Institute
CONTACT: CONTACT: Dan Riedinger, +1-202-508-5483
Web Site: http://www.eei.org

Overview and Status of SMRs Being Developed in the United States, China, Russia, and Korea

TEPCO switches on Japan's largest solar power plant

TEPCO switches on Japan's largest solar power plant

Why BP Solar Failed

Potential Energy

Why BP Solar Failed

After a 40 year run, it's giving up in the face low cost manufacturing in Asia, and its inability to innovate.
Kevin Bullis 12/21/2011
  • 1 Comment
BP Solar, which has roots going back decades to the early days of solar panel manufacturing, can't compete in a difficult solar panel market, so it's closing its doors, according to reports. It joins a number of other solar manufacturers, including famously the U.S. government-backed Solyndra, that have failed during difficult times for the solar industry.

Simpson Praises Final INL/Nuclear Funding Levels

Simpson Praises Final INL/Nuclear Funding Levels
Idaho Congressman says Energy Department funding bill allows progress at Idaho National Laboratory


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Washington, Dec 16 -
 Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson today announced that the final Energy and Water Development conference report for fiscal year 2012 increases funding for nuclear energy and continues progress toward the development of new nuclear technologies, including those under development at Idaho National Laboratory (INL). Simpson is a senior member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, serving as one of its members for nearly nine years.
“I am very pleased that the Appropriations Committee and Congress have once again demonstrated strong support for the development of nuclear energy and provided the resources necessary to continue our nation’s progress on new and promising nuclear technologies,” said Congressman Simpson. “Idaho National Laboratory and its exceptional workforce play a vital national and international role in leading the development of new nuclear technologies, and this bill will help maintain and expand that role in the future. We all know that Congress has had to make some very difficult choices about where to focus limited taxpayer resources, and with that in mind I am very grateful for the confidence my colleagues have shown for nuclear energy in this bill.”
Simpson also commended the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Nuclear Energy and the Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Energy, Dr. Pete Lyons, for the support they have given to INL and nuclear energy programs. “The road to securing support for nuclear programs begins with the budgets produced by Assistant Secretary Pete Lyons and the folks who work at the DOE and at labs like INL,” said Congressman Simpson. “I want to thank Dr. Lyons for working with me and other supporters of nuclear energy to gain support for these critical programs in Congress.”
The fiscal year 2012 Energy and Water Development conference report includes $768.6 million for the DOE’s Office of Nuclear Energy, a $31 million increase over the FY2011 funding level of $737 million. Nuclear energy research and development programs that receive funding within the $768.6 million allotment include:
  • The Idaho Facilities Management account, which covers infrastructure maintenance and improvement at Idaho National Laboratory - $155 million;
  • The Nuclear Energy Enabling Technologies program - $74.9 million which includes;
  • The Advanced Test Reactor National Scientific User Facility at INL - $14.6 million;
  • Reactor Concepts Research and Development - $115.5 million. This funding includes $25 million for the Light Reactor Sustainability program and $40 million for the Next Generation Nuclear Plant program;
  • Fuel Cycle Research and Development - $187.4 million;
  • Small Modular Reactor Licensing Technical Support - $67 million;
The bill also provides $386.9 million for cleanup activities associated with the Idaho Cleanup Project and the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project co-located on the Idaho desert with Idaho National Laboratory.  The funding level of $386.9 million represents a $4.1 million increase over the President’s request and allows the significant cleanup activities currently underway to continue their progress.
Overall, the Energy and Water Development Appropriations conference report provides $32.1 billion dollars for the functions of the Department of Energy, the Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation and a number of independent agencies, including the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Bonneville Power Administration. This level of funding for these agencies represents a reduction of $4.1 billion below the President’s request.
“If energy supply and price instability have taught us anything, it is that our nation needs to improve its focus on developing clean, safe, and domestic sources of energy and that nuclear energy must be a strong component of our nation’s energy portfolio,” said Simpson.
The conference report is expected to pass the House and Senate today and be sent to the President for his signature before the current authorization for funding expires at midnight.

EPA Finalizes Air Toxics Rule

EPA Finalizes Air Toxics Rule

Fukushima: Alarmist Claim? Obscure Medical Journal? Proceed With Caution

Fukushima: Alarmist Claim? Obscure Medical Journal? Proceed With Caution

Billionaire Ambani’s Reliance Industries Invests in Nuclear Design Company

Billionaire Ambani’s Reliance Industries Invests in Nuclear Design Company

Financial Times - Energy 12/22

FT.com - Energy
 

DoJ tells Exelon to sell three plants in Maryland
http://link.ft.com/r/EB8122/IIU4F1/TP3TEW/08CSEB/HYPD3K/28/h?a1=2011&a2=12&a3=22
 
National Grid fined over gas escape delays
http://link.ft.com/r/EB8122/IIU4F1/TP3TEW/08CSEB/TUCPON/28/h?a1=2011&a2=12&a3=22
 
EPA toughens rules on US power emissions
http://link.ft.com/r/EB8122/IIU4F1/TP3TEW/08CSEB/VL21VL/28/h?a1=2011&a2=12&a3=22
 
Solar groups win court case on subsidies
http://link.ft.com/r/EB8122/IIU4F1/TP3TEW/08CSEB/16485O/28/h?a1=2011&a2=12&a3=22
 
Essar chief steps down to face telecoms charges
http://link.ft.com/r/EB8122/IIU4F1/TP3TEW/08CSEB/JE1IUI/28/h?a1=2011&a2=12&a3=22
 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Idaho Samizdat: Nuke Notes More news about nuclear energy than Fukushima in 2011

Idaho Samizdat: Nuke Notes

More news about nuclear energy than Fukushima in 2011

 

Jaczko fiasco in Congress

Jaczko fiasco in Congress

Keystone XL Pipeline: Economics, Idealism and Politics

Keystone XL Pipeline: Economics, Idealism and Politics

from EconMatters

Kim Jong-un’s Nuclear Card

Kim Jong-un’s Nuclear Card

With the passing of Kim Jong-il, many questions are being asked about North Korea, its people, and its dealings with the outside world. There is, however, one issue that trumps all others: what does this change of leadership mean for the North Korean nuclear program? So far, there are no clear indications of a change in North Korea’s posture towards the outside world. There’s the possibility that his son, Kim Jong-un, will lean on his “nuclear card” in some show of strength to enhance his domestic position. However, there’s also the possibility he might refrain from any sort of tactical or crisis driven display to strengthen his position. Kim belongs to the young generation – he’s a man in his 20s with a long life ahead of him – and so may be inclined to leave the nuclear card unplayed in order to gain economic and political benefits for his country. The ... Read More...

Navy’s Big Biofuel Bet: 450,000 Gallons at 4 Times the Price of Oil

Navy’s Big Biofuel Bet: 450,000 Gallons at 4 Times the Price of Oil

A new roadmap for coal

 

A new roadmap for coal

The EPA's Unconscionable War on Fracking By Jeffrey Folks

The EPA's Unconscionable War on Fracking

By Jeffrey Folks

How Will Renewable Energy Fare in 2012?


How Will Renewable Energy Fare in 2012?

Opinion Why the Wind Industry Is Full Hot Air and Costing You Big Bucks

Opinion Why the Wind Industry Is Full Hot Air and Costing You Big Bucks 

From the NRC Blog: An easier-to-use ADAMS: You asked, we acted

U.S. NRC Blog

An easier-to-use ADAMS: You asked, we acted

by Moderator
Yes, it’s true – the NRC has just unveiled an even better ADAMS. The NRC’s Agencywide Documents Access and Management System, which is available from our website, now boasts a number of enhancements – some implemented directly as a result of public input.
We’ve been making continuous improvements and our latest enhancements include a new “content search” feature for searching words either in documents or in index information. Other enhancements include the:
• Ability to display up to 500 search results.
• Ability to save a search as a web link and then use it again to find your frequently requested documents.
• Ability to export a list of documents as hypertext markup language (HTML) or as a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet.
• Ability to access search-specific folders by right-clicking on the folder or using the “Advanced Search” tab.
• Ability to more easily modify a saved search by changing your search criteria.
ADAMS is an online library that includes all the agency’s publicly available documents as well as a Public Legacy Library that has entries for 2 million older NRC documents stored on microfiche or in paper form.
If you have questions about any of the new search features or you need help to develop an effective search, the reference librarians in our Public Document Room are available to assist.
We hope you find the new search capabilities easier to use and we welcome your feedback via comments to this post.
Margie Janney
Deputy Director, Information and Records Services Division

Westinghouse working on 225 MWe small modular reactors that can be constructed on 18 month schedule

Overview and Status of SMRs Being Developed in the United States, China, Russia, and Korea

Used nuclear fuel-what happens after Fukushima?

 




Used nuclear fuel-what happens after Fukushima?
22 August 2011
Storage options for used nuclear fuel are likely to be re-considered following the incidents at Fukushima’s spent fuel pools. But whether storage is local, centralised, or deep under ground, we need to keep our options open.

Audit Finds Security Flaws at Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Audit Finds Security Flaws at Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Obama’s Great Green Fleet The president forces the Navy to purchase expensive and dubiously green biofuel.

Obama’s Great Green Fleet
The president forces the Navy to purchase expensive and dubiously green biofuel.

House Oversight Report: ‘A Crisis of Leadership’ – Jazcko ‘Damaging’ to NRC

House Oversight Report: ‘A Crisis of Leadership’ – Jazcko ‘Damaging’ to NRC

Committee on Oversight and Govt. Reform Hearing Documents

12-14-2011 "The Leadership of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission" PDF Print E-mail

Hearing Documents

Hearing Video
 
12-14_NRC_Hearing_Graphic
 
Chairman Issa Hearing Preview Statement
This hearing will focus on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in the wake of reports that the NRC's Chairman has abused his office and mismanaged his responsibilities to the detriment of the commission's critical work. The concerns about the Chairman are shared amongst the four commissioners – two Democrats and two Republicans. Three of the four were appointed by President Obama. Their joint complaints are not about differences in policy or safety with the Chairman. Rather, their concern involves how the Chairman exercises his responsibilities, intimidates staff, and undermines the law put in place by Congress designating the commission – not the chairman – as the agency's ultimate authority.
An investigation undertaken by the committee has exposed a hostile work environment that is detrimental to the mission of the NRC. It is a detriment to the staff, the Commissioners, and the reputation of the agency. While Chairman Jaczko professes that safety is his number one priority, his leadership style is simultaneously eroding the NRC's ability to execute its mission. It is important that we understand the root cause of this problem and restore the public's confidence in the integrity of this agency.
Witnesses
Panel I
Chairman
National Regulatory Commission
 
Commissioner
National Regulatory Commission
 
Commissioner
National Regulatory Commission
 
Commissioner
National Regulatory Commission
 
Commissioner
National Regulatory Commission
 
Panel II
Mr. Bill Borchardt
Executive Director for Operations
Nuclear Regulatory Commission
 
Mr. Stephen Burns
General Counsel
Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Other Documents

We Can't Turn NRC Into Reality TV Show, Must Focus on Our Nuclear Safety

We Can't Turn NRC Into Reality TV Show, Must Focus on Our Nuclear Safety

A New Use For Nuclear Waste: Nuclear Power

A New Use For Nuclear Waste: Nuclear Power

If used nuclear fuel is still so dangerous that we have to bury it in mountains, why can’t we keep producing electricity from it? New initiatives around the world are exploring the energy potential of nuclear recycling.

Nuke Power Talk Japanese Nuclear Regulation: A Growing Chorus of Concern

Japanese Nuclear Regulation:

A Growing Chorus of Concern

Regulatory Changes To Implement the United States/Australian Agreement for Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation; Corrections

Regulatory Changes To Implement the United States/Australian Agreement for Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation; Corrections

U.S. Department of Justice Clears the Way for Exelon-Constellation Merger

U.S. Department of Justice Clears the Way for Exelon-Constellation Merger

Nuclear nations wrestle with problem of permanent waste storage

Nuclear nations wrestle with problem of permanent waste storage

1000 MW nuclear power joins Iran national grid by March

1000 MW nuclear power joins Iran national grid by March

Nuclear power here worth some thought

Nuclear power here worth some thought

Japan Prime Minister Declares the Fukushima Reactors Stabilized POSTED BY: Eliza Strickland

Japan Prime Minister Declares the Fukushima Reactors Stabilized

POSTED BY: Eliza Strickland

Rolls Royce Wins £210 Million Contract with Areva for French Nuclear Deal

Rolls Royce Wins £210 Million Contract with Areva for French Nuclear Deal

Japan Releases 40-Year Nuke Plant Cleanup Plan

Japan Releases 40-Year Nuke Plant Cleanup Plan

Japan Nuclear Agency May Get 50 Billion Yen Budget After Crisis

Japan Nuclear Agency May Get 50 Billion Yen Budget After Crisis

Lack of confidence reason enough to fire NRC chief

Lack of confidence reason enough to fire NRC chief

Idaho's EBR I started nuclear industry 60 years ago today.

Idaho's EBR I started nuclear industry 60 years ago today.

Westinghouse designs small modular nuclear reactor capable of powering a suburb

Westinghouse designs small modular nuclear reactor capable of powering a suburb

Ameren asks for 20-year extension for Callaway nuclear plant

Ameren asks for 20-year extension for Callaway nuclear plant

Disaster survivors in Japan look back on year of hardship, lessons

Disaster survivors in Japan look back on year of hardship, lessons

Public health fallout from Japanese quake

Public health fallout from Japanese quake

Updates from the American Nuclear Society 12/19

American Nuclear Society

Jaczko fiasco in Congress

By lscheele on Dec 21, 2011 01:00 am

By Jim Hopf Seems to be the season of controversy in Washington concerning nuclear issues and energy issues in general. First we had the whole Solyndra affair (discussed in my Nov. 28 post), and now we have an unprecedented—and highly … Continue reading
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60 years ago in Idaho

By rmichal on Dec 20, 2011 04:20 pm

Sixty years ago on December 20, scientists and engineers in Arco, Idaho, successfully used nuclear energy from the EBR-1 to power four 200-watt light bulbs, laying the groundwork for decades of clean electricity and a strong U.S. nuclear energy industry. … Continue reading
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