Tuesday, June 30, 2015

UK And Canada Sign MOU For Advancing Nuclear Cooperation

This picture of a nuclear power plant was taken from a plane. The plant consists of 8 large dome-shaped reactor buildings and other structures.
Copyright © 2005 Ontario Power Generation Inc.
Nuclear Street News - The Natural Resources Canada, known as NRCan, and the British Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) have signed a memorandum of understanding that allows for greater cooperation in the field of nuclear energy.

The deal will build on the partnership between Candu Energy Inc. and GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Canada, allowing further development of plutonium and uranium stockpiles in CANDU heavy water reactors, according to a statement.

The biggest winner in the deal is, apparently, Canada, based on the opportunities it will provide for Canadian companies. Britain is dealing with an aging nuclear power plant fleet that currently supplies the country with 18 percent of its electricity. However, all but one of the country’s nuclear power plants are expected to close by 2023.

Britain, meanwhile, has signaled that it expects to build 12 nuclear reactors by 2030 – at least enough to generate 16,000MW.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Moment of Truth Nears for Nuclear Waste Time Bomb

A worker looks through a thick glass window at part of the treatment of nuclear waste at the Areva Nuclear Plant of La Hague, near Cherbourg, western France, western France, April 22, 2015.  REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Waste treatment at the Areva Nuclear Plant, western France
Reuters: By Vera Eckert - More than half a century after the world's first commercial nuclear plant went into operation in the United States, the industry may finally be nearing a way to store radioactive waste underground permanently.

The world has 270,000 tonnes of used fuel stockpiled, much of it under water in ponds at nuclear power stations, adding to the urgency of finding a permanent storage solution for material that can remain toxic for hundreds of thousands of years.

Finland and Sweden hope to be the first countries in the world to be able to put the most dangerous high-level waste (HLW) into underground storage in the next decade, using a new technology to encase fuel rods and protect them from erosion.

At a conference in Vienna this week, the 164-nation International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) heard updates from the Finish and Swedish authorities on their model solution.


Nuclear to Play Significant Role in IEA’s Climate Strategy

WEO 2015 ClimateBy FORATOM: Posted in News-feeds - The International Energy Agency (IEA) published on 15 June 2015 a new study, World Energy Outlook Special Report on Energy and Climate Change, in which it outlines its strategy for the world to limit global warming to 2°C. The use of low-carbon energies including renewables and nuclear must sharply increase while oil and gas production must decrease for the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to peak by 2020.

The IEA defines four pillars, which are: to set the conditions for energy-related emissions to peak by 2020; to review national climate contributions regularly; to translate the national or regional climate goals into a collective long-term emissions goal; and to establish an effective process for tracking achievements in the energy sector. To do so, the IEA recommends a series of measures including increasing energy efficiency, reducing the use of inefficient coal-fired power plants, increasing investment in renewables, reducing methane emissions, and phasing out fossil fuels subsidies.


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

California's Mega-Drought: Nuclear Power To The Rescue

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant in San Luis Obispo County, California has had a seawater desalination plant for its entire existence, producing all of its fresh water needs from operations to cooling to irrigation to supplying drinking water to its employees. But it only uses about 40% of its capacity and is willing to use all of it to produce fresh water for the nearby community to help with the effects of the megadrought.
Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant
Forbes>Energy (James Conca) - The only power facility in California that does not use any of the state’s precious fresh water is the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant near San Luis Obispo. And it can even produce additional freshwater for the nearby community.

The nuclear plant desalinates ocean water using reverse osmosis and ultrafiltration. The nuclear plant depends on the desalination plant as its sole source of fresh water, used for the plant’s two nuclear reactors as well as all other water needs such as drinking water for its employees and irrigation of its grounds.

Although a relatively small plant, Diablo Canyon’s seawater desalination plant is presently the largest operating desal facility on the West Coast, producing about 675,000 gallons of freshwater a day.