USA – no new nukes, and crumbling old ones,
Is the “Nuclear Renaissance” Dead Yet?, HUFFINGTON POST, Harvey Wasserman: 13 Sept 2010, America’s much hyped “reactor renaissance” is facing a quadruple bypass. In actual new construction, proposed projects and overseas sales, soaring costs are killing new nukes. And the old ones are leaking like Dark Age relics on the brink of disaster.
As renewables plummet in cost, and private financing stays nil, the nuclear industry is desperate to gouge billions from Congress for loan guarantees to build new reactors. Thus far, citizen activism has stopped them. But the industry is pouring all it has into this fall’s short session, yet again demanding massive new subsides to stay on life support
Here’s a lab report: Soaring costs at Vogtle, the US’s one active new reactor project, have stuck Georgia ratepayers with $108 million in unplanned overcharges … and that’s just for starters at a site where actual construction has barely begun. Vogtle’s builders are hiking rates by nearly 3x as much as the original $1.30/month promised when it first agreed to soak ratepayers for the plant — in advance.
This new hike was opposed by the PSC’s own staff, which blasted the whole deal for being shrouded in secrecy. Currently calculated to cost a sure-to-soar $14.5 billion, the Vogtle project got $8.33 billion in federal loan guarantees from Obama in February. Citizen/taxpayer groups have since sued to see the details, which the administration is keeping secret. Georgia Power, which is building Vogtle, has already asked for another $1 billion rate increase..
…The French giant AREVA’s “new generation” projects in Finland and Flamanville, France, have also soared hugely over budget and behind schedule. So there’s every indication the new generation of reactors will be as catastrophically behind schedule and over budget as the first…….
Because atomic energy can’t compete with natural gas or renewables and efficiency, Exelon has withdrawn its application to build two reactors in Victoria County, Texas…..
American reactor component makers are angry with India for a passing new law requiring the industry to assume substantial liability for a catastrophe they might cause…….
America’s aging fleet of first generation reactors is leaking profusely…….
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