Australian news, and some related international items

 Nuclear Power Reactors large or small for South Australia Not Justifiable

scrutiny-Royal-Commission CHAINSouth Australia Invites Comments on Nuclear Power, Sowells Law Blog,Roger Sowell, 21 july 15   Nuclear Power for South Australia Not Justifiable”………I have been invited to prepare and submit responses to the questions and issues posed in Paper 3 for Civilian nuclear power plants.  There are 17 questions, shown below [on original] .   I plan to formally submit detailed answers to most, if not all, the questions.

The short, summary answer to the over-arching question of Should South Australia build and operate nuclear power plants, is no.   The basis for that conclusion is the facts and particulars of South Australia’s power grid both at present and the foreseeable future.  The grid is small, with 5,000 MWe total installed capacity.  The demand is low, with typical daily maximum 1,500 MWe although demand peaks on hot summer days at approximately 3,000 MWe.  More importantly, minimum demand at night is approximately 700 MWe.   Finally, South Australia has access to abundant coal and natural gas for fuel.

Given the small grid loads, and small minimum night demand, a nuclear power plant that is operated at baseload to provide maximum efficiency and minimum power price, must be a small size at perhaps 300 MWe.   Small nuclear reactors suffer from reverse economy of scale and are very expensive for the amount of power produced.   Conversely, a larger plant would achieve some economy of scale, but the plant must have its output reduced at night to ensure grid stability.  A larger plant would be more costly to allow load changes, and the sales price for electricity produced must increase accordingly.  (see Truth About Nuclear Power, part 2 for details — see link)   The usual safety concerns also apply: operating upsets and radiation releases, evacuation plans, spent fuel storage or reprocessing, and sabotage and terrorist attacks, to name a few.

July 22, 2015 - Posted by | NUCLEAR ROYAL COMMISSION 2016

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