Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

Major News and Commentary Military and Civilian Nuclear Activities

Saturday, February 11, 2012

.New Nuclear Reactor Permitted . . . But It is "Old School"



New Nuclear Reactor Permitted…But It Is “Old School”…Thorium ...
If you read up one thorium it will be obvious it is a safer fuel to use for nuclear plants and the technology is being improved as we speak – but by the Chinese ...
bearroombrawl.wordpress.com/.../new-nuclear-reactor-permitt...

The long drought is over; a new energy future for America. from ATOMIC POWER REVIEW by Will Davis

The long drought is over; a new energy future for America.

French reactor down as cold snap drives power demand

French reactor down as cold snap drives power demand

Paris (AFP) Feb 10, 2012
A French nuclear reactor has gone into an unscheduled shutdown, state energy giant EDF said on Friday, placing fresh pressure on a national power grid already strained by freezing temperatures. The company said the shutdown, on the number two reactor at the Cattenom plant in the northeast of the country, was caused by a broken alternator in a non-nuclear part of the reactor and posed no threat

Return from the Jaws of death

Return from the Jaws of death

My failure to post during the last three months has been due to serious health problems. I was hospitalized in late November. During a heart procedure my heart stopped beating. It was shocked back to life, but then a lung collaspsed and my life was again threatened. A trache procedure was performed, and once again I was snatched from the jaws of death. I suppose if you die twice you become a candidate to be a Zombie! However my rehabilitation so far has not included bitting pe0ple.

I spent 10 days in a coma, and then a month flat on my back. I have now been in rehabilitation for nearly a month, and although I have a lot of problems, I am making trurly amazing progress.

I attribute my survival to two things. The first is my love for my wife Becky, sand her love for me. The second is to continue to tell the MSR/LFTR STORY. I believe that the MSR is of great importance for the future of human society and that this needs to be explained over and over until people grasp the concept. Telling the story is my missi0n, and I need to live in order to continue to do so untill the message is heard.

China authorities demand nuclear plant halt: report

China authorities demand nuclear plant halt: report

Beijing (AFP) Feb 9, 2012
Authorities in eastern China have demanded that construction on a nuclear power station be stopped immediately, saying residents in the quake-prone area are in danger, state media reported Thursday. Energy-hungry China - eager to increase the amount of nuclear power it uses to drive its economy - is building 25 atomic reactors and the demand is considered highly unusual

Czechs Downsize Nuclear Power Ambitions

Czechs Downsize Nuclear Power Ambitions

NRC Approves Vogtle Reactor Construction - First New Nuclear Plant Approval in 34 Years (With new plant photos)

NRC Approves Vogtle Reactor Construction - First New Nuclear Plant Approval in 34 Years (With new plant photos)

French President Voices Support for Aging Nuclear Plant, Sets Contrast With Election Opponent

Blog Post: French President Voices Support for Aging Nuclear Plant, Sets Contrast With Election Opponent

Blog Post: Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant Weekly Review

Blog Post: Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant Weekly Review

Tokyo Electric Power Co. arrested an unexpected rise in temperature at Fukushima Daiichi unit 2 this week and also scheduled the shutdown of the company's last operating reactor.

Namibia Pursues Nuclear Energy Dreams With France's Areva

Namibia Pursues Nuclear Energy Dreams With France's Areva

Namibia, the fourth biggest uranium producer in the world, first floated the idea of acquiring a nuclear power plant of its own four years ago. Rio Tinto and Australian miner Paladin Energy currently produce Namibia’s uranium.
French state-owned Areva's Trekkopje project in 2010 received its Export Processing Zone (EPZ) license for a period of five years after Areva reportedly agreed to develop a feasibility study on generating nuclear power in Namibia. Namibia's nuclear ambitions purportedly enjoy the full support of President…
Read more...

Carnival of Nuclear Energy 91

Carnival of Nuclear Energy 91

Yes Vermont Yankee has the 91st Carnival of Nuclear Energy - the Vogtle Edition.

This is a great week for nuclear energy: the NRC issued the first license for a new generation of nuclear power plant. Units 3 and 4 at the Vogtle site in Georgia now have a Construction and Operating License. These AP1000 reactors have an advanced design, based on the Westinghouse PWR, but with more passive safety features and less piping.


ANS Nuclear Cafe by Dan Yurman - The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission on February 9 in a 4-1 vote cleared the way for its Office of New Reactors to issue a combined construction and operating license (COL) to the Southern Nuclear Operating Company for two 1100-MW Westinghouse AP1000 model reactors to be built at the company’s Vogtle site, in Waynesboro, Ga. (NRC final order) NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko made the one dissenting vote.

NRC spokesman Scott Burnell told financial wire services that the agency will issue the COL immediately, which will kick off a huge construction boom in Georgia. The Shaw Group, which will be building the two units, announced plans to hire 3500 workers for the $14-billion construction phase that is expected to take until 2016 for the first unit and an additional year for the second.




In related news, the Tennessee Valley Authority said in a financial document issued this week that it expects to complete the Watts Bar-2 reactor in 2014 and that it has issued a construction contract to complete the Bellefonte reactor by 2020. It will start work on Bellefonte once Watts Bar-2 is done. In 2007, TVA completed a reactor at Browns Ferry.

Nextbigfuture - NRC approves the Vogtle AP1000 reactors in just under 4 years

Nextbigfuture - New 130 MWe Lead cooled fast reactor design from Argonne. A superstar.


Brief profile of the South Korea nuclear programme, and activity on restarts in Japan and Germany. Germany is not clear they may have restarted coal plants and not nuclear

Nuclear vs Nuclear vs Nuclear

Nuclear vs Nuclear vs Nuclear
http://www.monbiot.com/2012/02/02/nuclear-vs-nuclear-vs-nuclear/
We can’t wish nuclear waste away: we must choose one of three options for dealing with it. Read more – ‘Nuclear vs Nuclear vs Nuclear’.

Co-Chairs of Nuclear Issues Working Group Issue Statement on Approval of Nuclear Reactor

Co-Chairs of Nuclear Issues Working Group Issue Statement on Approval of Nuclear Reactor PDF Print E-mail
February 9, 2012
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representatives Jason Altmire (PA-04), Judy Biggert (IL-13), and Michael Simpson (ID-02), Co-Chairs of the House Nuclear Issues Working Group, today released the following statement on the announcement that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approved the first new nuclear power plant permit in 30 years. The new permit will allow Southern Co. to construct two new nuclear reactors at its existing plant in Georgia. The NRC voted 4 to 1 in favor of the new permit to construct the two AP1000 reactors designed by Westinghouse Electric Company. The government and industry partnership formed by the Nuclear Power 2010 program lead to this outcome.
"Nuclear power represents the most reliable, plentiful source of carbon-free energy that we can develop right now to meet America's rapidly rising electricity needs," the Co-Chairs said. "Today's announcement by the NRC is a long-overdue milestone on our path to energy independence, and we are pleased that American workers and consumers will finally have an opportunity to benefit from the construction and operation of the first new U.S. reactors in over 30 years. With the advancement of new technologies, and cutting-edge research on nuclear recycling, the reactors that are being planned today have the potential to launch America into a new position of global leadership on responsible energy production and high-tech job growth."

America's Building Trades Unions Applaud NRC Consent of Construction and Operating License for Plant Vogtle Nuclear Project in Georgia

February 9, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact:
Tom Owens
202-756-4623
towens@bctd.org

America's Building Trades Unions Applaud NRC Consent of Construction and Operating License for Plant Vogtle Nuclear Project in Georgia

* Approval for first nuclear new build in America

Approval for first nuclear new build in America

09 February 2012
American safety regulators gave the go-ahead today for the construction of two new nuclear power reactors.

Nuclear Safety, Cost Issues Loom As U.S. OKs Reactor by Christopher Joyce

Nuclear Safety, Cost Issues Loom As U.S. OKs Reactor

Design of new U.S. reactors puts priority on cooling

Design of new U.S. reactors puts priority on cooling

The new reactor stores water inside a containment building of the reactor as opposed to outside it.

Southern’s `Monumental Accomplishment’ Tempered by Fukushima


Southern’s `Monumental Accomplishment’ Tempered by Fukushima

Editorial | New nuclear permits long overdue

Editorial | New nuclear permits long overdue

 

http://www.tuftsdaily.com/editorial-new-nuclear-permits-long-overdue-1.2697842#.TzQxfeNSQlw

Ending the Nuclear Drought February 9, 2012 Will Marshall

Ending the Nuclear Drought

February 9, 2012

Yes Vermont Yankee 91st Carnival of Nuclear Energy Blogs: The Vogtle Edition







Saturday, February 11, 2012

91st Carnival of Nuclear Energy Blogs: The Vogtle Edition

atomic power review Vogtle COL approval vote indicates perspective on "nuclear renaissance"

atomic power review



Posted: 10 Feb 2012 06:41 PM PST
Quite a number of people, including this author, have used the term "nuclear renaissance" to indicate the present tide that appears to lead to at least six new nuclear plants within the decade at a total of three sites, and the term is in fairly wide use. Some people not aware of the overall history of nuclear energy in the United States may wonder how this term really applies. To fill in that gap, I hereby present a VERY truncated history of commercial nuclear energy in this country, with a specific focus on the rundown in the mid-70's. This will help to give perspective on just what was lost in this country when the nuclear industry infrastructure ran down.

TEXT-Fitch says new nuclear plant may spur few more

TEXT-Fitch says new nuclear plant may spur few more
Reuters
Despite significant enthusiasm for nuclear power in recent years as an alternative to fossil generation, diminished load growth in the slow economy and historically low natural gas and wholesale electric prices have dampened interest.

Manager of Fukushima Daiichi power station to speak at April's Nuclear Summit ...



Carlsbad Current Argus
CARLABAD — A nuclear fuel manager with the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station will make a presentation during the upcoming National Nuclear Fuel Cycle Summit, held April 2-5 in Carlsbad. The Carlsbad Department of Development is hosting the ...

AREVA: French Nuclear Safety Authority ASN Issues Favorable Opinion of ATMEA1 ...

AREVA: French Nuclear Safety Authority ASN Issues Favorable Opinion of ATMEA1 ...
Power Engineering Magazine
ATMEA received the final report and findings of the review of ATMEA1 reactor safety objectives and options by the French nuclear safety authority (ASN). The ATMEA1 reactor is an 1100 MWe Generation III+ pressurized water reactor (PWR) developed and ...

Nuclear Nation

Nuclear Nation
Chicago Tribune
Confronted with a catastrophe of such magnitude as the Fukushima reactor fallout, "Nuclear Nation" cuts to the heart of the matter by focusing firmly on those most gravely affected: evacuees from Futaba, which became ground zero on March 12, 2011.

NRC Vogtle Reactor Approval Should Blow Lid Off Nuclear Finance ...

NRC Vogtle Reactor Approval Should Blow Lid Off Nuclear Finance ...
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Thursday vote to approve the combined construction and operating license application (COLA) for Southern Company's ...
my.firedoglake.com/.../nrc-vogtle-reactor-approval-should-bl...

Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Vogtle Reactor Approval Should Blow Lid Off ...

Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Vogtle Reactor Approval Should Blow Lid Off ...
truthout
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Thursday vote to approve the combined construction and operating license application (COLA) for Southern Company's Plant Vogtle cleared the way for adding two AP1000 nuclear reactors to the two existing units near ...
See all stories on this topic »

New Reactors Signal US Nuclear Energy Resurgence

New Reactors Signal US Nuclear Energy Resurgence
Huffington Post
The United States has taken an important step toward efficiently meeting the country's rising electricity demand by ensuring a greater supply of clean, safe nuclear power. With plans in place in Georgia for the construction of the next generation of ...

U.S. Energy Security, not Politics, Should Drive Keystone XL Debate By: Jason Marczak | Briefing

U.S. Energy Security, not Politics, Should Drive Keystone XL Debate

By: Jason Marczak | Briefing
Occasional threats to global oil supply are one reason why U.S. energy security requires “an all-out, all-of-the-above strategy,” as President Barack Obama recently put it. Though this strategy must include alternative energy sources, the U.S. will continue to depend on oil for its energy needs. Here, Canada can play an even-greater role in maintaining the stability of the U.S. energy picture.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ex-Japan PM's crisis adviser says nuke danger at Fukushima still exists


Ex-Japan PM's crisis adviser says nuke danger at Fukushima still exists
Newstrack India
Tokyo, Feb 10(ANI): A former special adviser to Naoto Kan has warned that the meltdown crisis at the Fukushima plant is far from being over. He said the Fukushima crisis has exposed serious nuclear problems that Japan would have to tackle in the years ...

Fukushima No. 2 plant was 'near meltdown' The Daily Yomiuri


Fukushima No. 2 plant was 'near meltdown'
The Daily Yomiuri
2 nuclear power plant was "near meltdown" after being hit by tsunami following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, according to the head of the plant. The No. 2 plant, on the border of Naraha and Tomioka towns in Fukushima Prefecture, ...

On Firm Ground IAEA's International Seismic Safety Centre Making Nuclear Power Safer

On Firm Ground

IAEA's International Seismic Safety Centre Making Nuclear Power Safer

Real Time Tsunami Forecasting System
The IAEA's Real Time Tsunami Forecasting System is now in development and could be used to alert nuclear power plant operators when a Tsunami may arrive and its wave height. (Photo: N. Bekiri/IAEA)
Nuclear power plants have been inundated by flood waters and Tsunamis, pummeled by tornadoes, and rattled by earthquakes. Since the early 1970s, the IAEA has been developing Safety Standards for nuclear power plant siting that include the risks external events pose to the plant's safe operation under all conditions. During the past two decades, over 100 IAEA expert missions have investigated and reviewed nuclear installations' ability to withstand strong earthquakes.
When a massive Tsunami hammered India's east coast in December 2004, its waves submerged some of the sea water pumps at the Madras Atomic Power Station Nuclear Power Plant. In July 2007, the Niigate Chuetsu-Oki earthquake hit the world's largest nuclear power plant, Kashiwazaki-Kariwa, which was damaged by the tremors. These two events fused international action to intensively monitor and research these extreme events.
By 2008, the IAEA established the International Seismic Safety Centre (ISSC). The Centre's expertise lies in supporting Member States in their assessment of external hazards when selecting nuclear power plants sites, to evaluate existing plants' robustness against such hazards and to develop more robust plant designs.
"The ISSC plays a leading role in supporting nuclear safety globally," said Denis Flory, the IAEA's Deputy Director General for Nuclear Safety and Security, speaking at a recent ISSC meeting. "The ISSC's work and research on external events such as earthquakes, Tsunamis, tornadoes, and flooding offers the sound, scientifically-proven basis for the effective implementation of best practices in seismic safety."
Great East Japan Earthquake
On 11 March 2011, Flory recalled, "the ISSC's External Event Notification System alerted the IAEA's Incident and Emergency Centre (IEC) within 56 minutes of the Great East Japan Earthquake's first tremor. That warning enabled the IEC to immediately initiate an international emergency response."
Less than an hour later, the earthquake-driven Tsunami devastated the eastern Japanese coast, cutting power, control and cooling at the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, triggering the severe nuclear accident. During the IAEA's emergency response, the ISSC's experts helped plan and conduct the IAEA's first fact-finding mission to the accident site. With those findings in hand, the ISSC supported the development of an IAEA methodology to assess specific nuclear power plants' resilience against extreme natural hazards. The Centre's experts returned to Japan early in 2012 to use this methodology to assess whether the nuclear power plants shut down after the March 2011 earthquake and Tsunami could be safely re-started.
As the IAEA coordinated the emergency response, the Agency's experts also worked intensively on a Nuclear Safety Action Plan that all of the IAEA's Member States adopted the in September 2011. Comprising 12 key actions to strengthen safety at nuclear power plants around the world, the Nuclear Safety Action Plan, Flory emphasized, is supported substantially by the ISSC, which is undertaking "exactly the kind of work that is needed by the Action Plan: the ISSC supports Member States in promptly initiating the national assessment of site-specific external natural hazards, reviewing and revising Safety Standards on nuclear power plant site selection and the assessment of external natural hazards, strengthening the emergency notification systems and reporting, disseminating the lessons learned from the Fukushima accident and strengthening Member States' capacity."
Donor Commitment
Funded solely by voluntary contributions, the ISSC depends upon the support of IAEA Member States to act as a global focal point in strengthening safety against external hazards for nuclear installations world-wide. Flory underscored the Nuclear Safety Action Plan's "pivotal role in prioritizing the Agency's work and that of the ISSC, which is funded as an extra-budgetary project."
For a week from 6 to 10 February 2011, the Centre's donors meet in Vienna to discuss the range of research, review services and training the Centre is delivering.
For a donor nation, such as the Republic of Korea, addressing the hazards posed by external events is vitally important, said Chang-Hun Hyun, the Principal Research Engineer of the Korea Institute of Nuclear Safety, since "the ISSC's objectives are important for all countries that are now using nuclear power." Hyun emphasized that Korea values, the ISSC's work, because "we directly utilize the safety reports and the technical documentation, in strengthening seismic safety."
Intensively involved in establishing the ISSC as part of Japan's contribution to ensure the highest levels of seismic safety, Katsumi Ebisawa, Associate Vice-President of the Japan Nuclear Energy Safety Organization, sees the ISSC as "the global watchdog for ensuring the safety of nuclear power against external events." Since the ISSC is part of the IAEA, an independent, international organization, Ebisawa noted that the ISSC is "best suited to assess seismic safety for embarking countries that wish to introduce nuclear power for the first time."
It is the ISSC's capacity to bring together a broad range of stakeholders that Philippe Renault, Swissnuclear's Head of Earthquake Safety and Probabilistics, values as "a platform to exchange lessons learned between regulators, industry and operators regardless of their origin." External hazards represent one of the first challenges a Member State has to consider before embarking on a nuclear power programme. Switzerland, Renault explained, "has done a great deal in this area and we wish to share that knowledge, especially with nuclear newcomers." The ISSC organizes this information centrally so that Member States can easily access it, Renault noted, "to be able to compare the ISSC's technical reports with national regulation and then extract the benefits from lessons learned by other countries."
Nuclear safety's continual improvement is the fundamental priority driving the Centre's work, said Pierre Labbe of √Člectricit√© de France, since "otherwise nuclear safety will regress." While the IAEA develops and issues Safety Standards, it is the ISSC's detailed documentation that provides "exactly the kind of guidance that nuclear reactor operators need to be able to effectively implement the seismic Safety Standards," Labbe explained.
Tailored Support
The ISSC also develops IAEA Safety Standards and supports their use in selecting sites for nuclear power plants, evaluating existing sites to determine hazards caused by natural events, seismic design, and through expert safety review services tailored for Member States' individual requirements. The ISSC's Siting and External Events Design review (SEED) is designed to determine whether a Member State's site selection and plant safety design is consistent with international practices and to confirm that conclusion through an international peer review.
Working Areas
Several countries are embarking on programmes to introduce nuclear power. For these nations, the IAEA's safety guide on the types of seismic hazards to consider when planning the site of a future nuclear power plant offers vitally important guidelines. The ISSC is now translating that guidance into a detailed guide on the advice's practical implementation, such as predicting site response and ground motion, producing a database of the environmental effects of earthquakes, and analyzing the ancient, or "paleoseismological" record of seismic events.
For the nuclear power plants now in operation, the ISSC is developing detailed, updated guidance for regulators' and operators' use in evaluating existing nuclear power plants' seismic safety. That advice includes a database of experience with seismic activity, a benchmark study of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant's response to the 2007 earthquake, as well as a real-time safety assessment system to evaluate a nuclear power plant's response when subjected to seismic and other external events.
Flooding can threaten a nuclear power plant's safe operation. The ISSC is reviewing the safety guidance on assessing flooding hazards, coordinating global and regional cooperation in tsunami hazard assessment and is encouraging the installation of the Tsunami Warning System at all nuclear power plants.
Volcanoes present another relatively common external hazard, since about a quarter of the IAEA's Member States have active volcanoes within their borders. Volcanic activity can have regional and international impact, which the IAEA's safety guide on assessing volcanic hazards when siting a nuclear power plant will address. The guide is due to be issued in 2012, and will be supplemented with training courses and a workshop.
Although not a natural event, sabotage could threaten plant safety, and could cause effects similar to those produced by a natural event. An ISSC working group is now producing a detailed manual to help Member States implement security guidance to prevent sabotage.
Predicting Tsunami Impacts
In partnership with the United States' National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, the ISSC is also developing a real-time Tsunami forecasting system. If an earthquake is registered that could lead to a Tsunami, the ISSC's forecasting system would utilize state-of-the-art modeling software to predict wave height and the speed with which the waves are moving across the ocean. When these predictions are matched with the locations of the nuclear facilities in the region, for instance, the waves' arrival time and height could be sent as an alert message to potentially affected facilities. An advance warning of this nature could significantly increase the facilities' ability to prepare for the ocean's onslaught.
Expanding Expertise
When reviewing the past year, Sujit Samaddar, the ISSC's Head, said the International Seismic Centre "has grown into a centre of excellence on external events," including volcanic activity and tsunamis. While the ISSC provides site safety reviews for many countries now considering starting a nuclear power programme, Samaddar underscored that "the Centre's limited resources do not allow it currently to provide the level of support that is needed in Member States that are keen in progressing rapidly with their energy program." He is optimistic that a new extrabudgetary programme will be funded to channel support to "the embarking countries to assure us that all possible means national and international has been taken when siting and building new plants in countries different from countries where they were manufactured."
-- By Peter Kaiser, IAEA Division of Public Information

OPEC Predicts Global Oil Demand to Slow in 2012

OPEC Predicts Global Oil Demand to Slow in 2012

Due to various factors such as; the continuing economic crisis in Europe; the delicate situation in Iran and the uncertainty over its oil supplies; the economic worries currently being experienced by, and still facing, the US; and the general high prices of retail petroleum, the Paris-based agency, the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), have predicted that world oil demand will slow in 2012. In a monthly report the forecast for overall growth in demand has been cut by 120,000 barrels per day (bpd).
The report stated,…
Read more...

"We don’t say safety when we’re talking Vermont Yankee."

"We don’t say safety when we’re talking Vermont Yankee."

Entergy’s Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant’s operating license would have expired on March 21, 2012, but the Nuclear Regulatory Commission extended the license to 2032. Vermont’s legislature and a vocal part of the state’s population don’t like the idea of Vermont Yankee’s continued operation.

NRC Advances Nuclear Energy in US

NRC Advances Nuclear Energy in US

We commend today’s Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) approval of two new nuclear reactors at Vogtle, and welcome the growing resurgence of modern nuclear energy in the United States. By approving these new reactor designs, the NRC takes the first step in advancing an era of even safer and more robust Generation III+ nuclear energy facilities, like AREVA’s EPR(TM) reactor. These advanced nuclear reactors incorporate defense-in-depth safety and design lessons learned from the Fukushima disaster that include:
  • Multiple redundant passive and active safety features
  • Double-hulled four-foot thick concrete reactor buildings able to withstand the impact of a jetliner
  • Greater operating efficiency and reliability

As NEI president Marvin Fertel stated, “This is a historic day. Today’s licensing action sounds a clarion call to the world that the United States recognizes the importance of expanding nuclear energy as a key component of a low-carbon energy future that is central to job creation, diversity of electricity supply and energy security.”

The ‘nuclear renaissance’ arrives. Now what?

The ‘nuclear renaissance’ arrives. Now what?

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) signed off on the first new nuclear reactors since 1978 on Thursday, marking the beginning — and some might say the end — of the United States’ nuclear renaissance.

NRC Approval of Plant Vogtle’s Construction, Operating License Opens New Nuclear Energy Era

NRC Approval of Plant Vogtle’s Construction, Operating License Opens New Nuclear Energy Era

WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 9, 2012—The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced today that it has approved Southern Nuclear’s combined construction and operating license (COL) for the two-reactor Plant Vogtle expansion in Georgia. Southern Nuclear, a subsidiary of Southern Company, will build two Westinghouse Electric Co. AP1000 reactors at the site near Augusta, Ga. Following is a statement from Marvin S. Fertel, the Nuclear Energy Institute’s president and chief executive officer.

U.S. Nuclear Industry Achieves Strong Performance Despite Many Challenges

U.S. Nuclear Industry Achieves Strong Performance Despite Many Challenges

NEW YORK, Feb. 9, 2012—America’s nuclear energy facilities operated safely and reliably in 2011, with solid performance in electricity production and operating efficiency in spite of a year of numerous challenges from natural events in the United States and Japan.

Update from NEI Notes: On Vogtle: Reactions and News Coverage

On Vogtle: Reaction and News Coverage

vogtle-blog480The importance of the license granted (or virtually so, as the Commission technically authorized issuance of the license, but did not issue the license itself) to Southern Co. to build two reactors on its  Plant Vogtle site in Georgia is quite real – I noticed that the New York Times and Washington Post put on their first pages that it might happen today.
That’s anticipation for you.
Well, it did happen today – well, the NRC authorized it to happen. A little confusing, but as we’ll see, it’s largely treated as the big event.
Here is NEI’s President and CEO Marv Fertel:
This is a historic day. Today’s licensing action sounds a clarion call to the world that the United States recognizes the importance of expanding nuclear energy as a key component of a low-carbon energy future that is central to job creation, diversity of electricity supply and energy security. The Nuclear Energy Institute congratulates Southern Company, the Shaw Group, Westinghouse Electric and other project participants on this exciting achievement.
Read more here.
From Southern Co.’s President and CEO Tom Fanning – he’s on video in the post below this one:
“This is a monumental accomplishment for Southern Company, Georgia Power, our partners and the nuclear industry,” said Southern Company Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning. “We are committed to bringing these units online to deliver clean, safe and reliable energy to our customers. The project is on track, and our targets related to cost and schedule are achievable.”
The company expects to deliver to customers more than $1 billion in benefits from the Department of Energy loan guarantees, production tax credits and recovering financing costs during construction.
Georgia Power expects Unit 3 to begin operating in 2016 and Unit 4 in 2017.”
More here.
From Shaw Group’s Chairman, President and CEO J.M. Bernhard:
“Shaw congratulates Southern on this major milestone for the Vogtle project, the first new U.S. nuclear construction commercial power project in more than 30 years,” said J.M. Bernhard Jr., Shaw’s chairman, president and chief executive officer.
“Shaw is proud to be part of such a historic project. Not only is this milestone another step forward in continuing to provide safe, clean and reliable energy for the future, but the project also will create thousands of jobs and provide numerous long-term benefits for the Georgia community. Shaw anticipates hiring approximately 3,500 employees during construction of the new units at Vogtle, with thousands of more jobs created as a result of construction and operation of the reactors,” said Mr. Bernhard.
More here.
From Westinghouse’s President and CEO Aris Candris:
"Westinghouse congratulates Southern Nuclear on the approval of its combined construction and operating license (COL) for Plant Vogtle by the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
"The granting of this COL is yet another important step in constructing the next generation of new nuclear plants in the United States.  The thorough and rigorous COL review, combined with the recent AP1000® design certification help to ensure Southern and its stakeholders of receiving greater levels of safety, increased project certainty and years of reliable electricity generation.  Additionally, these plants will contribute significantly to the local, regional and national economies by creating and sustaining thousands of jobs.”
More here.
---
Let’s look at some news coverage.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Commissioners voted 4-1 to approve the project. NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko, who has supported the project throughout the process, dissented, saying he was concerned that the reactors would not meet certain safety requirements put in place since Japan's Fukushima Daiichi accident.
"Significant safety enhancements have already been recommended as a result of learning the lessons from Fukushima, and there is still more work ahead of us. Knowing this, I cannot support issuing these licenses as if Fukushima never happened," Jaczko said.
The Augusta Chronicle. Augusta is the largest town near the Vogtle facility – I reckon a fair number of its workers live in Augusta:
Fellow commissioners expressed confidence that safety recommendations made since the Japan crisis will be properly implemented.
“There is no amnesia, individually or collectively,” commissioner Kristine L. Svinicki said of the NRC’s attention to lessons learned from Fukushima.
Newshounds. Always after conflict. The Chronicle gets a detail right that most other papers missed:
The license, which could be issued within 10 days, according to NRC staffers, will lead to the construction of the first AP1000 modular reactors in the U.S., creating a workforce expected to peak at about 3,500 during the next three years, with total job creation estimated at 5,000.
Symbolically, today’s the day, but practically, the license will be prepared by the NRC staff and issued inside a couple of weeks. Southern Co. cannot proceed without it, but now they know it’s coming. Good for writer Rob Pavey for picking that up.
The Chronicle has a page with stories about Vogtle. My favorite one was:
Twin brothers Abner and Allen DeLaigle can remember the flood of workers and money that inundated Burke County when Plant Vogtle first rose from the ground decades ago.
“We had a store, and a restaurant, just down from the front gate,” said Allen DeLaigle, “We also had a camper park with 380 spaces — and we stayed full for 10 years.”
During that era [meaning the 70s], the mammoth project lured 14,000 workers to the remote banks of the Savannah River, where the demand for housing, food and other commodities was so intense that their restaurant bustled seven days a week.
Sounds like a gold rush town. Wonder if they had a dance hall and a Marshal.
I looked at the Waynesboro paper, the True Citizen, (Waynesboro is the town nearest to Vogtle likely to have a paper), but it puts its content behind a pay wall. We may never know how they report it in Waynesboro, except that the headline is: High Expectations.
The Washington Post Story is here and the New York Times story is here. Both relegate it to the business pages. Better to stay local on this one, because this is really big news in that part of Georgia. I come from Georgia myself, so perhaps there’s a personal angle too and a bit of home state pride.
Plant Vogtle clears land.

Obama Keeps Us Hooked on Foreign Oil

Obama Keeps Us Hooked on Foreign Oil

Rep. Phil Gingrey, Wash Times
Achieving energy independence is paramount to our economic prosperity and national security. How to accomplish these priorities, however, has been the subject of political debate for decades. Currently, the United States imports nearly 12 million barrels of oil daily to the tune of $1.1 billion. . .

NRC Approves First New U.S. Nuclear Reactors in 30 Years … Fatal Flaws In Fukushima Design NOT Fixed

NRC Approves First New U.S. Nuclear Reactors in 30 Years … Fatal Flaws In Fukushima Design NOT Fixed

While the Rest of the World Is Abandoning Unsafe Nuclear Designs, America Will Build New Unsafe Reactors

The geniuses at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission have given the green light for new nuclear power plants in the U.S. … which don’t include safety upgrades which were demonstrated vital by the Fukushima meltdown.

Nuclear Energy in 2012-Setting a New Agenda

YouTube Help Center | Change Email Preferences
NEINetwork just uploaded a video:

New power source discovered

New power source discovered
(PhysOrg.com) -- Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and RMIT University have made a breakthrough in energy storage and power generation.

Small modular reactor design could be a 'SUPERSTAR'

Small modular reactor design could be a 'SUPERSTAR'
(PhysOrg.com) -- Though most of today's nuclear reactors are cooled by water, we've long known that there are alternatives; in fact, the world's first nuclear-powered electricity in 1951 came from a reactor cooled by sodium. Reactors cooled by liquid metals such as sodium or lead have a unique set of abilities that may again make them significant players in the nuclear industry.

'SUPERSTAR' Reactor has Important Safety Features

'SUPERSTAR' Reactor has Important Safety Features | SciTechDaily
By Staff
Small modular reactors, or SMRs, are small-scale nuclear plants that are designed to be factory-manufactured and shipped as modules to be assembled at a site. They can be designed to operate without refueling for 15 to 30 years.
SciTechDaily

New Pall Filter Enhances Nuclear Plant Safety and Equipment Relability


New Pall Filter Enhances Nuclear Plant Safety and Equipment Reliability
Power Engineering Magazine
Pall Corporation (NYSE: PLL ) today announced a major advance in nuclear power plant filtration with the launch of a filter that reduces radioactive particulate exposure for plant personnel and equipment.

Small modular reactor design could be a "superstar'


Small modular reactor design could be a 'SUPERSTAR'
PhysOrg.com
(PhysOrg.com) -- Though most of today's nuclear reactors are cooled by water, we've long known that there are alternatives; in fact, the world's first nuclear-powered electricity in 1951 came from a reactor cooled by sodium.

Japan Demand for Oil Rising to Replace Nuclear Power, IEA Says

Japan Demand for Oil Rising to Replace Nuclear Power, IEA Says
Bloomberg
Japan's power sector will buy an additional 465000 barrels of oil a day this year if all of its nuclear plants are idle after April, offsetting declines elsewhere in the nation, the International Energy Agency said.

Nuclear Power vs. Natural Gas

Nuclear Power vs. Natural Gas
New York Times (blog)
By MATTHEW L. WALD Southern CompanyAn artist's rendering of Plant Vogtle in Waynesboro, Ga., with the two nuclear reactors to be added in the foreground. When critics say nuclear power is risky, they often mean the risk of an accident.

New nuclear era begins after approval of Vogtle plant – but questions remain

By Jim Pierobon, February 10, 2012
How much “new” nuclear and how soon? Those are the front-of-mind questions for nuclear and many cleaner energy advocates with today’s U.S. government approval of the construction and operation of two new nuclear power reactors by Southern Company in Georgia using the “AP1000″ design by Westinghouse. The quick answer appears to be: a total of four new reactors by 2020. It was 33 years ago when the...  » Continue...

Canadian Nuclear Association Applauds Canada-China Agreement on Uranium Exports

Canadian Nuclear Association Applauds Canada-China Agreement on Uranium Exports
Prime Minister Stephen Harper's recent trip to China proved positive for Canada's uranium industry. Thanks to the successful completion of negotiations between Canada and China, an agreement has been formalized that will increase exports of Canadian uranium to China. This means more jobs and new investments in Canada, and greater security of nuclear fuel supply for China, which is the world’s largest energy consumer.

NRC Approves New Nuclear Build at Vogtle Site in Georgia


NRC Approves New Nuclear Build at Vogtle Site in Georgia
A big congratulations goes out to all the stakeholders involved in the recently approved new build at the Vogtle site in Georgia. This is great news for the global industry as many countries, including Canada, are undergoing the new build review process. Here's to a balanced and sustainable energy future for North America!

Wind power to nuclear power infographic comparison

Wind power to nuclear power infographic comparison



http://ansnuclearcafe.org/2012/02/09/wind-nuclear-infographic/

"Wind power to nuclear power infographic comparison"
Jason Correia creates a first-class wind power to nuclear power
infographic, in a first-in-a-series feature at the ANS Nuclear Cafe.
The energy density of nuclear vs. wind makes for a very dramatic
comparison -- and Jason Correia provides a very enlightening description
and discussion of wind and nuclear in their own right.  And the
infographic can be saved as a beautiful poster-sized .pdf!

NRC issues licenses for Southern’s Vogtle project

NRC issues licenses for Southern’s Vogtle project



http://ansnuclearcafe.org/2012/02/09/nrc-issues-licenses-for-southerns-vogtle-project/

"NRC issues licenses for Southern’s Vogtle project"
By a 4-1 vote, the NRC opens the door to $14 billion in new
construction of two Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear reactors.  At the ANS
Nuclear Cafe, Dan Yurman breaks down the NRC voting on the Vogtle
licenses, the economic impacts, the opposition's next legal moves, and
what might be next on the horizon for nuclear energy in the USA as a
result.

Is This the Start of a Nuclear Renaissance?


Is This the Start of a Nuclear Renaissance?
DailyFinance
By Travis Hoium, The Motley Fool Posted 12:06PM 02/10/12 Investing The Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved the first new US nuclear reactor in more than 30 years yesterday. It was a step nuclear backers have been hoping for since something of a ...

Blue Castle Nuclear Project Says NRC License for Georgia Reactors Shows .

Blue Castle Nuclear Project Says NRC License for Georgia Reactors Shows .

Predictability and New Jobs

..
MarketWatch (press release)
PROVO, UT, Feb 10, 2012 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- The United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission today granted approval for the construction and operation of two nuclear power reactors at Southern's Company Vogtle site, in the State of Georgia.

Update from i-NUCLEAR Cameco 2011 revenue and gross profits up, but miner says 2012 U sales and revenue to fall

Update from i-NUCLEAR

Cameco 2011 revenue and gross profits up, but miner says 2012 U sales and revenue to fall

by I-Nuclear
Cameco President and CEO Tim Gitzel said the company was largely unaffected in 2011 by the slowdown in new reactor construction and lower uranium prices, but the Canadian uranium miner forecast a somewhat gloomier 2012 in a conference call with analysts February 10.
Cameco sold 32.9 million pounds of uranium in 2011 at an average realized price of US$49.17/lb versus 29.6 million lb in 2010 at an average realized price of US$43.63, the company said.
Revenue for 2011 came in at C$1.6 billion, up from C$1.3 billion in 2010. Gross profits came in at C$632 million in 2011, up from C$532 million in 2010.
Net earnings fell to C$450 million for 2011, compared with C$516 million in 2010.
The company said net earnings were impacted by losses on foreign exchange derivatives compared to gains in 2010 and by higher costs of sales, lower income in electricity sales and higher taxes.

Lower 2012 revenue

In its financial results released late February 9, the company said it expects consolidated revenue in 2012 to be as much as 5% lower due to lower sales volumes in the fuel services business (uranium conversion services) and lower realized prices on uranium sales.
Uncertainty over the status of reactors in Germany and Japan has caused concern that, in the near to medium term, excess inventory held by these utilities could be dumped on the market due to deferrals and/or cancellations of deliveries under sales contracts.
“This has caused market participants to be discretionary in their purchases,” Cameco said. “We believe that utilities will continue to work with producers to manage these materials and minimize the impact on the market,” the company said.
Gitzel said during the conference call February 10 that Cameco “had had a few requests for deferrals and had agreed to some,” but he said he didn’t expect these excess inventories to “hit the market in an irresponsible way.”
In fact, Gitzel said, Cameco was able to sell back on the market at higher prices those quantities which Cameco had agreed to defer or cancel with customers to date.
Based on current spot prices, Cameco said it expects 2012 revenue should be about 0% to 5% lower than it was in 2011 as a result of an expected decrease in the realized price.

Double U & Inkai

Cameco’s plans to double uranium production by 2018 to 40 million pounds -- it was 22.4 million pounds in 2011 -- may hinge in part on its joint venture with Kazakhstan state nuclear company Kazatomprom.
Cameco has been trying since 2007 to significantly increase production at the joint venture Inkai mine in Kazakhstan, but Kazatomprom is holding out for a share of a uranium conversion facility.
Cameco currently owns 60% of JV Inkai. It is planning to spend C$10 million on capital expenditures at Inkai this year.
Cameco said it reached a new agreement with Kazatomprom in 2011 to increase annual production in 2012 from blocks 1 and 2 at Inkai to 5.2 million lb/year  on a 100% basis, up from the current 2.5 million lb.
However,  Kazakhstan government approval is still pending and Cameco said it needs to finalize a binding agreement on the the 2011 memorandum before production can be increased to 5.2 million pounds.
Under the 2011 agreement Cameco will receive the right to 2.9 million pounds of Inkai's annual production and receive profits on 3.0 million pounds.
Cameco said that if  Inkai does not receive the government approvals for the increased production, or if the permits and approvals are delayed, “Inkai may be unable to achieve its 2012 and future annual production targets and we may have to recatagorize some of Inkai's mineral reserves as resources.”
To increase production at Inkai to 10 million lb uranium, Cameco’s longer term goal, “we continued to explore with Kazatomprom the feasibility of building a uranium conversion facility and other potential collaborations in uranium conversion,” Cameco said.
The talks over the uranium conversion facility, which have been ongoing since 2007, have focused on the possibility of building a 12,000 mt UF6 conversion plant at the Ulba Metallurgical Plant in Kazakhstan and/or expanding existing converion capacity at Westinghouse’s conversion and fuel facilities at Springfields in the UK.--David Stellfox

I-Nuclear | February 10, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Categories: Cameco, Kazakhstan, Uranium | URL: http://wp.me/p22dAl-8x

RSS Feed for Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

 RSS Feed for Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

http://feeds.feedburner.com/blogspot/uQcDQ

FAIREWINDS ENERGY EDUCATION New Containment Flaw Identified in the BWR Mark 1

FAIREWINDS ENERGY EDUCATION

VIDEO  UPDATE: February 9th, 2012

New Containment Flaw Identified in the BWR Mark 1

Fairewinds shows that the nuclear industry's plan to vent the containment at Fukushima Daiichi could not have prevented a containment failure and the ensuing explosions. Look at the graphics from the containment stress tests conducted more than 40 years ago at a US nuclear reactor identical to Fukushima Daiichi Unit 1. This video and its graphics provide important clues about why Fukushima Daiichi Unit 1 exploded.

Watch Video Now

From Penn Energy: This Week's Most Popular Oil & Gas News

This Week's Most Popular Oil & Gas News
Petrobras announces no more traces of oil in the Santos Basin
Total plans new offshore oil platforms in Nigeria
Technip awarded major flexible pipe frame agreement by Petrobras
Heavy crude oil solution a win-win for Chevron in Pascagoula
Williams Partners' Transco Pipeline seeks shale natural gas commitments
Capstone continues penetration of Russian oil fields with new associated gas projects
Seadrill secures contracts for three jack-up rigs
Credo Petroleum updates Bakken and Three Forks activity
Shell takes majority share of Crux natural gas fields
EnerJex spuds first oil well in new Mississippian drilling program
Petrobras discovers oil and natural gas in the Amazon
Total launches Phase 2 development of oil field offshore Nigeria
Platts: January petrochemical prices surge 9% on restocking and tight supply