Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

Major Energy and Environmental News and Commentary affecting the Nuclear Industry.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

India needs nuclear power, for now -- minister


Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant Weekly Review

The Downside of Saying No: Nuclear Energy in Australia

The Downside of Saying No: Nuclear Energy in Australia


Indonesia to build first nuclear power plant via investvine


Southworth Discusses AREVA’s Nuclear Portfolio at Platts Conference

Southworth Discusses AREVA’s Nuclear Portfolio at Platts Conference - See more at: http://us.arevablog.com/2014/02/07/southworth-discusses-arevas-nuclear-portfolio-at-platts-conference/#sthash.TsgLoRo0.dpuf

Nuclear Matinee: Nuclear Energy’s Value – Columbia Generating Station


Fukushima radiation levels underestimated by five times

Fukushima radiation levels underestimated by five times - :
TEPCO has revised the readings on the radioactivity levels at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant well to 5 million becquerels of strontium per liter - both a record, and nearly five times higher than the original reading of 900,000 becquerels per liter.

Obama's Climate Legacy May Come Down to Coal and 'No'

Obama's Climate Legacy May Come Down to Coal and 'No'


Seeing Over the Horizon: Sharp Rise in Ocean Temperatures in 2013


Iran resumes nuclear talks with IAEA in Tehran


San Onofre steam generators – honest error driven by search for perfection


Coal Emissions Equal an Athabasca Oil Sands Reserve Every Four Years


A Nuclear Power Resurgence?


Uranium Industry Remains in Post-Fukushima Funk


NRC Commissioners Grilled on Nuclear Rules, Security, and Efficiency


Gasping nuclear industry in desperate need of a PR overhaul

Gasping nuclear industry in desperate need of a PR overhaul


Radiation In Calif. Kelp? Scientists To Test West Coast Water 3 Years After Fukushima Nuclear Meltdown

Radiation In Calif. Kelp? Scientists To Test West Coast Water 3 Years After Fukushima Nuclear Meltdown


Gas Pipelines and Fees

Gas Pipelines and Fees. Both are on their way.
Angwin notes Vermont's plans to tax gas pipelines to fill the Clean Energy Development Fund.  Vermont Yankee had been forced to pay tens of millions into that fund. Now, the Vermont administration is looking for new sources of funding for their favorite renewable projects.

Is Fracking All It's Fracked Up to Be?

Is Fracking All It's Fracked Up to Be? Jones Seminar and video
Angwin describes a Dartmouth engineering school seminar which echoes her own conclusion that low prices for shale gas are part of a transient bubble. They are not the new world order.

Natural gas prices spiking.

Natural gas prices spiking. What great timing it was to shut down those US reactors.


Nuclear repository fire contained in New Mexico

Nuclear repository fire contained in New Mexico 


Nuclear repository fire in New Mexico has been snuffed out, according to local officials, after a fire broke out at the facility Wednesday morning. The nuclear repository is used to store low-grade nuclear waste, including plutonium-contaminated clothing and tools.

TEPCO to review "massive" radiation data due to improper measurement


 TEPCO to review eroneous radiation data

Friday, February 7, 2014

#Fukushima I NPP: TEPCO Admits Error 7 Months Later, Says All-Beta from Observation Hole Along Embankment Was 10 Million Bq/L, Not 900K Bq/L


Two Quakes Strike Near Fukushima as US Sailors Sue Over Cleanup


Friday, February 7, 2014

PennEnergy's Top Oil & Gas News 2/7

Top Oil & Gas News
Shell abandons Arctic offshore drilling plans
Once again, Shell has abandoned its plans to drill in Arctic waters offshore Alaska. The announcement comes after a court ruling last week that the Interior Department has awarded permits to Shell based on inadequate information.
Full Article

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PennEnergy Video News Update
From good news for Keystone XL, to records being set in Brazil, to new offshore production for Shell, all of the week's biggest headlines are in the PennEnergy Video News Update.
Full Article

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This Week's Most Popular Oil & Gas News
TransCanada: Final environmental review shows Keystone XL should be approved
Brazil oil and gas production reaches almost 2-year high
EnerJex begins natural gas production in Adena Field under new contract
ExxonMobil increases Permian Basin oil and gas acreage
Shell starts production from second Mars offshore production platform
BSEE confirms uncontrolled flow of gas has been stopped at GoM well
Oil and gas value creation spotlighted in new webcast
OPEC oil production reaches 29.94 million bpd in January
Chevron, GE Oil & Gas form technology alliance
American Midstream closes Eagle Ford acquisition
Total sells 15 percent stake in Angola offshore exploration block
Enbridge to update Toronto area natural gas distribution system
API touts positive Keystone XL oil pipeline FEIS
GE Oil & Gas opens Downstream Technology Solutions business
CAPP encourages Keystone XL oil pipeline approval

Energy Insights
All Energy, All the Time: How Keystone XL invaded my vacation
On the fourth day of this gloriously work-free existence, my mother happened to be watching television news when a story about Keystone XL’s recent environmental impact report came on. My mother, who knows very well my day-to-day employment puts me right in the thick of these headlines, turned to me and asked a question...
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Governing Energy: Maturity Model
The Capability Maturity Model was first described in 1989 book Managing the Software Process as a software development process maturity framework. It has subsequently become a general model to aid many business processes.
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Oil & Gas Jobs
Supply Chain Strategy Analyst
Conduct current state process assessments including benchmarking, maturity analysis, process mapping and pain point identification for Shell Lubricants Americas
Translate data into relevant information and develop long and short term supply chain strategy
Perform supply network optimization using tools such as LogicNet+
Perform various assessments to develop strategy and end-to-end optimization
Identify metrics and value driver trees
Develop terms of reference, project plans (including timeline)
Ability to work with various stakeholders across Lubricants supply chain organization

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oOEM Technical Sales Manager
Work close together with the Area Sales organization and the GPS organization to identify opportunities
Develop systematic approach to identify opportunities in an early stage and document it
Liase with internal functions and assist in tender preparation on major oOEM opportunities. Take lead in customer negotiation
Be aware of competitors’ strategy and capabilities to aid in the development of market intelligence and pricing compatible with local expectations
Be aware of on-going design developments and improvements in order to be able to offer the complete current range of company products
Review target pricing for oOEM service products. Regular analysis and updating of pricing / market price curves, direct feedback into pricing strategies
Support development of capture plans for oOEM key opportunities
Support the Power Sales activities for key oOEM opportunities
Drive continuous feedback loop of lessons learnt and competitor analyse

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Oil & Gas Research
Worldwide Refinery Survey and Complexity Analysis 2014
Paired with the regular Refining Survey, the Complexity Analysis adds significant value to the refinery data with three measures. The Nelson Complexity Index (NCI) provides insight into such things as refinery construction costs, replacement value, conversion capability and product slate. Also included is
Equivalent Distillation Capacity (EDC) which is calculated by multiplying the distillation capacity by the NCI. And lastly, the BoB index provides a means of quantifying and characterizing a refinery’s ability to process heavy crudes and produce premium refined products. It represents the combined capacity of a refinery’s Coking, Catalytic Cracking and Hydrocracking units relative to Distillation Capacity (expressed as a percentage).

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Appraising Reserves & Production Potential of Oil & Gas Fields - Conventional and Unconventional: Masterclass
Learn how to analyze decline behavior, estimate recovery efficiency, apply well economics, develop algorithms, and make quick estimates of production potential - all useful for pre-audits and analysis of production of shale oil and gas plays. Learn all of this and more in the Masterclass from Dr. Rafael Sandrea, an expert in the oil and gas field! Currently offered at 10% discount
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Record-high strontium-90 in past Fukushima plant groundwater sample


TEPCO Corrects Last Summer's Water Pollution Data to Record High


Minimal damage from NM nuclear repository fire


Life-Cycle Emissions Analyses

Life-Cycle Emissions Analyses

Nuclear energy stations do not emit criteria pollutants or greenhouse gases when they generate electricity, but certain processes used to build and fuel the plants do. This is true for all energy facilities. Nuclear energy’s life-cycle emissions include emissions associated with the construction of the plant, mining and processing the fuel, routine operation of the plant, disposal of used fuel and other waste byproducts, and decommissioning.


Gas Pipelines and Fees. Both are on their way.


Bavaria opposes green-energy power lines despite nuclear closure

Bavaria opposes green-energy power lines despite nuclear closure


Energy Storage Battery Heads To The Market

Energy Storage Battery Heads To The Market


Areva, Schneider Electric sign energy-storage deal

Areva, Schneider Electric sign energy-storage deal


Commercial Energy Storage Market to Surpass 720MW by 2020

Commercial Energy Storage Market to Surpass 720MW by 2020


A new report by GTM Research likens the current state of commercial storage to the U.S. solar market of 2005.


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Salt-Water Fish Extinction Seen By 2048


Restored Federal Funding Re-Energizes MIT’s Fusion Center


Exelon says it could close nuclear plants to save money


South Korea nuclear power: Are the dark times over?


Alvin Weinberg’s liquid fuel reactors


China making a mockery of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, and no one seems to care


The renewable energy transition has begun


Iran Willing to Modify Its Arak Reactor, Official Says


How Does the U.S. Power Grid Work?

How Does the U.S. Power Grid Work?

With over 160,000 miles of transmission lines, the U.S. power grid is designed to handle natural and man-made disasters, as well as fluctuations in demand. How does the system work? WSJ’s Jason Bellini has #TheShortAnswer.


European Parliament Backs Binding Targets for Climate, Energy, Shuns Commission’s Proposal


EPA Mulls Revising Nuclear Plant Radiation Standards


NRC Commissioners Grilled on Nuclear Rules, Security, and Efficiency


US NRC Blog Update: An Inspector's Perspective On the Control Rod Drive Mechanism Housingh Flaws at Palisades

U.S. NRC Blog

An Inspector’s Perspective On the Control Rod Drive Mechanism Housing Flaws At Palisades

by Moderator
Elba Sanchez Santiago
Materials Engineering Inspector
NRC Region III
Elba Sanchez Santiago is a Materials Engineering Inspector in the NRC's Region III.
Elba Sanchez Santiago is a
Materials Engineering Inspector in the
NRC's Region III.
There has been a lot of interest lately in the flaws that were recently found in the control rod drive mechanism (CRDM) housings at the Palisades nuclear plant, near South Haven, Mich. I want to share my direct experience with the NRC’s thorough and independent evaluation of this issue.
First, some background. The control rod drive mechanism moves control rods inside the reactor to control the level of nuclear chain reaction. The housing is a metal tube around the control rod drive mechanism, which is connected to the control rod and prevents leakage of reactor water into containment.
According to a commitment made in 2012, the plant conducted inspections of 45 CRDM housings in this reactor and found flaws in 17 of them. Palisades committed to these inspections after the discovery of a crack in one of the housings resulted in a plant shutdown in 2012.
Because of my expertise as a materials engineering inspector, I was dispatched to Palisades after it shut down in 2012. I was to evaluate the plant’s response to the discovery of the through-wall crack. As a member of a special inspection team that further evaluated this issue, I reviewed the plant’s testing of eight additional CRDM housings and their corrective actions. Even though no other cracks were found, the plant committed to further evaluate the condition of the housings during the 2014 refueling outage.
I came to Palisades before the current outage started to evaluate the site’s inspection methodology, work procedures, tooling and personnel qualifications. When the examinations started, I observed some of the actual testing and evaluated the results. To date, there is no evidence of leakage resulting from the flaws. I will remain onsite providing oversight over the plant’s actions until the issue is resolved.
Since the issue first came to light in 2012, I have been working with a team of other inspectors and specialists in Region III and the headquarters office in Rockville, Md., to make sure we ask the necessary questions to understand the plant’s methodology and assessments, and independently verify the conclusions.
Our in-depth independent reviews will continue until the plant completes the necessary repairs and takes proper actions to make sure the CRDM housing flaws do not lead to a significant safety concern. The results of our inspections will be documented in a publicly available inspection report.
Moderator | February 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm | Tags: NRC, nuclear power plant, Palisades | Categories: Operating Reactors | URL: http://wp.me/p1fSSY-1jh

Support Fedferal Loan Guaranty Petition for Vogtle

Cuts in Nuclear Energy Mean Higher Electricity Costs, More Carbon Emissions


Message Bottled in an Email

Amid the dunes of a tiny island in the North Atlantic, a scientist found a sandblasted bottle with a note in it.
Message Bottled in an Email
A long-lost legacy of ocean research resurfaces

The true cost of disaster insurance makes nuclear power uncompetitive

The European Commission is assessing how it should augment its nuclear disaster insurance. Ingmar Schumacher calls for full transparency of insurance costs in the cost-benefit evaluation of the nuclear industry.


India needs nuclear power till renewables fill gap: Abdullah


The storm before the calm

The storm before the calm
Paris (ESA) Feb 06, 2014 - In just a week the crew of Concordia research station will be left to survive on one of the remotest places on Earth for nine months. Together, the crew of 13 must operate the base, live and run scientific experiments on their own in the heart of Antarctica on a high plateau under extreme environmental conditions. In the run-up to their isolation, things are hectic on the base as it operat ... morehttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/The_storm_before_the_calm_999.html

Duke Energy under fire for coal ash spill


For more:
- see this report

Related Articles:
Despite decision, coal ash regs still up in the air
Coal ash controversy
Mandatory groundwater monitoring demanded for Ameren coal plants
Coal Residuals Reuse Act gets mixed reviews

US to build regional hubs to fight climate change

US to build regional hubs to fight climate change
Washington (AFP) Feb 05, 2014 - The United States government announced a new system of regional hubs to tackle the effects of climate change on Wednesday as the country's southwest battle a historic drought. The hubs "will address increasing risks such as fires, invasive pests, devastating floods, and crippling droughts on a regional basis," said a statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. The idea is "to trans ... morehttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/US_to_build_regional_hubs_to_fight_climate_change_999.html

US to advise Iraq on securing oil infrastructure

US to advise Iraq on securing oil infrastructure
Baghdad (AFP) Feb 05, 2014 - The United States is to provide Iraq with technical support to help it secure its oil export infrastructure, which accounts for the lion's share of government revenues,officials said Wednesday. The cooperation comes with Baghdad looking to dramatically ramp up crude sales to fund much-needed reconstruction of its conflict-battered economy, but facing repeated attacks on its pipeline infrastr ... morehttp://www.energy-daily.com/reports/US_to_advise_Iraq_on_securing_oil_infrastructure_999.html

Approach helps identify new biofuel sources that don't require farmland

Approach helps identify new biofuel sources that don't require farmland
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 06, 2014 - While the debate over using crops for fuel continues, scientists are now reporting a new, fast approach to develop biofuel in a way that doesn't require removing valuable farmland from the food production chain. Their work examining the fuel-producing potential of Streptomyces, a soil bacterium known for making antibiotics, appears in ACS' The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters. The met ... morehttp://www.biofueldaily.com/reports/Approach_helps_identify_new_biofuel_sources_that_dont_require_farmland_999.html

ANS Update 2/6 South Korea Nuclear Power: Are the Dark Times Over?

American Nuclear Society

South Korea Nuclear Power: Are the Dark Times Over?

By Will Davis on Feb 06, 2014 10:57 am

By Will Davis Over the past four years, the South Korean nuclear power program has suffered a set of very public setbacks which cast doubt on the entire program’s integrity, to the point where even the attention of the South … Continue reading
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The price of electric power has also spiked today in the northeast/mid Atlantic regions.

I just noticed that the Henry Hub price for Natural Gas has spiked up to $7.45/MMBtu today. I just thought I would keep everyone informed that might not check that piece of information too regularly. That price is basically double what the average price was over all of 2013.


NRC wants more info on Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant safety upgrades


GTM: Distributed energy storage to add 720 MW by 2020


New electric capacity for 2013: Winners, losers and surprises


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