Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Climate change a grave threat to nuclear power, especially in Australia – theme for July 2020

Over recent months the global nuclear lobby, USA in particular, and its Australian followers, have managed to get Parliamentary Inquiries and Bills going, with the aim of undoing Australia’s laws that prohibit the nuclear industry.  At the same time the push to make South Australia a nuclear waste importing hub has been revived, with the Federal government’s plan for a waste dump at Kimba as the first step.

And what is the nuclear lobby’s argument for nuclear power?  – the absurdly false claim that it will solve climate change.

IT’s THE OTHER WAY AROUND!      Nuclear facilities cannot cope with global heating!   Especially in Australia.

Climate change is bringing  extreme temperatures and weather events, and sea level rise, to Australia.

For Australia, the threats from global warming are very real:

  • bushfires would pose the greatest threat to any nuclear facilities, (as Ukraine and USA are already finding out).
  • Droughts bring water shortages, meaning that precious water is not easily available for water guzzling nuclear reactors.
  • Where inland reactors are water-cooled – the threat to river life of heat pollution becomes greater.
  • There would be great  danger to the Great Artesian Basin increases, especially  for any nuclear facilities located in South Australia
  • For coastal nuclear facilities, sea level rise and storm surges are dangers.
  • For many nuclear facilities ( reactors, fuel processing, waste disposal), coastal or inland, flooding brings more danger.

 

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Christina themes, climate change - global warming, safety | Leave a comment

Radioactive Waste Facility Site – Woomera Amendment circulated in Senate

Senator Rex Patrick  No Nuclear Waste Dump Anywhere in South Australia, 25 June 20, 

There’s something wrong when the starting point for the a radioactive waste management facility site selection is to let landowners – who stand to receive 4 times the market price for their land – pick the options. The better approach is to start by picking the best sites.

The process that led to Kimba being selected as the site was flawed from inception, has bitterly divided the community and ignored the views of First Nations people. Thankfully the process has been stopped and the Parliament has been asked to decide the site. The Government has asked the Parliament to choose prime farmland, I’m asking the Parliament to choose a remote desert Defence secured site (after consultation).

I circulated my Woomera Prohibited Area (WPA) amendment to the Senate yesterday. The Senate Economics Committee looking into the site selection will hold its first hearing on Tuesday in Canberra and then come to SA for a hearing. The Committee has also resolved to conduct a WPA site visit.

I encourage you to participate in democracy and make a submission to the Committee. You’ll find a link to it’s website in the comments.  mre  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1314655315214929/

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump, politics | Leave a comment

There is really no market in India for Australia’s uranium

No market for Australian uranium in India, 23 June 2020, M V Ramana and Cassandra Jefferyhttps://www.eastasiaforum.org/2020/06/23/no-market-for-australian-uranium-in-india/

In 2011, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) voted to overturn a ban on uranium sales to India. The Civil Nuclear Cooperation Agreement between Australia and India was then signed in 2014. The Australian Parliament subsequently passed a bill permitting its uranium mining companies to supply nuclear material to India. These efforts were supposedly intended to allow Australia to profit from Indian uranium purchases.

At the 2011 ALP national conference, then prime minister Julia Gillard argued that India was planning to generate 40 per cent of its electricity with nuclear energy by 2050. ‘Having access to this market is good for Australian jobs’, said Gillard during the conference. The Australian Uranium Association projected that ‘Australia could expect to sell some 2500 tonnes of uranium annually to India by 2030, generating export sales of AU$300 million’ (US$205 million). But nearly a decade later, what is the reality?

Aside from a small shipment of uranium sent to India for testing in 2017, no uranium appears to have been exported to India from Australia. In 2018, India’s Ministry of Atomic Energy stated that the country had signed contracts with firms from Kazakhstan, Canada, Russia and France to procure uranium. And in March 2020, India signed a contract with Uzbekistan. There has been no mention of Australia.

A large order for Australian uranium appears unlikely in the future as well. With a net generating capacity of only 6.2 gigawatts (GW), India does not have a large requirement for uranium in the first place. Further, Australian uranium can only be used for reactors under International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards, which attempt to ensure that no materials are used for nuclear weapons. Such reactors amount to less than 2 GW of India’s capacity.

India’s nuclear fleet will not expand dramatically either. India’s Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) has a long history of setting ambitious nuclear power generation targets and failing to meet them. In 1984, the DAE promised a nuclear capacity of 10 GW by 2000. The actual figure in 2000 was 2.7 GW. By then the DAE had set a new target, 20 GW by 2020. Again, today’s current capacity (6.2 GW) is nowhere close to this target.

Seven more reactors, with a total capacity of 4.8 GW, are under construction. But five of these reactors have been significantly delayed. Four of them were supposed to be commissioned in 2015 and 2016. But these reactors are now expected to start operating in October 2020, September 2021, March 2022 and March 2023 respectively.

The fifth is India’s flagship project, the Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR). Construction started in 2004 and the reactor was supposed to start functioning in 2010 but is now ‘expected to commence production of electricity in October 2022’.

Costs have increased, too. The PFBR’s estimate has jumped from Rs 34.9 billion (US$457 million) to Rs 68.4 billion (US$896 million). And the PHWRs will cost around 40–45 per cent more than initially projected.

In contrast, India’s renewable energy sector is a different story. Wind and solar power have only recently been introduced to India’s energy mix, but both technologies are expanding rapidly while becoming significantly cheaper. Between 2016 and 2019, installed solar capacity increased from 9.6 GW to 35 GW, while wind capacity increased from 28.7 GW to 37.5 GW. In 2019, both wind (63.3 terawatt-hours (TWh)) and solar (46.3 TWh) power contributed more to overall electricity generation in India than nuclear power (45.2 TWh).

India’s renewable energy sector is expected to continue growing, while nuclear energy will likely remain stagnant. Recently, the Department of Economic Affairs assembled a task force to ‘identify technically feasible and financially viable infrastructure projects that can be initiated in fiscals 2020–25’. The task force foresaw renewable capacity increasing from 22 per cent of the total installed electrical capacity in 2019 to 39 per cent by 2025. Conversely, nuclear capacity stays around 2 per cent of installed capacity.

Even the Indian government expects the divergence between the growing renewable energy sector and the stagnant nuclear sector to increase as the rapidly falling cost of solar power makes nuclear power redundant.

Australian policymakers who advocated for exporting uranium to India were betting on the wrong energy source. Perhaps there were ulterior motives, including recognising India as a major power. But good policy cannot be made on the basis of false claims.

Australian uranium companies continue to insist that India is expanding its nuclear power capacity. Energy Resources of Australia Ltd’s 2017 annual report claims that ‘India has 22 reactors in operation and plans to generate as much as 25 per cent of electricity from nuclear power by 2050’. Paladin and Yellow Cake made similar claims in 2019.

Nuclear power has never constituted more than a few per cent of India’s electricity supply. Given current trends, it will never amount to much more. Nuclear reactors are expensive and time-consuming to construct, factors that explain why the share of electricity supplied by nuclear power plants globally has declined continuously, from 17.5 per cent in 1996 to 10.15 per cent in 2018. This global trend must be considered by Australian policymakers as they deal with lobbyists for uranium mining and the push there to build nuclear plants.

M V Ramana is Professor, Simons Chair in Disarmament, Global and Human Security, and Director of the Liu Institute for Global Issues at the School of Public Policy and Global Affairs, the University of British Colombia. Cassandra Jeffery is a recent Master‘s of Public Policy and Global Affairs graduate of the University of British Columbia.

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, politics international, uranium | Leave a comment

Labor reaches for bipartisanship on energy policy, but a DEFINITE NO TO NUCLEAR

Albanese says Labor will not support domestic nuclear power. The Morrison government has flagged examining “emerging nuclear technologies” as part of Australia’s energy mix in the future in a new discussion paper kicking off the process of developing its much-vaunted technology investment roadmap. 

Let’s end Australia’s climate and energy warfare, Albanese tells Morrison  https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jun/24/lets-end-australias-climate-and-energy-warfare-albanese-tells-morrison 

Labor leader sets out policy pivot in challenge to PM to display genuine bipartisanship   Katharine Murphy
 Political editor @murpharoo

Wed 24 Jun 2020,  Anthony Albanese has dumped Labor’s former backing of Malcolm Turnbull’s national energy guarantee and opened the door for taxpayer support for carbon capture and storage technologies, in a major overture to Scott Morrison to reach bipartisan agreement on energy policy.

The Labor leader will use a speech to the National Press Club on Wednesday to set out his guiding principles for an agreement to end more than a decade of political warfare on climate and energy policy.

In a letter sent to the prime minister before Wednesday’s address, Albanese says Labor is open minded on a new policy mechanism to guide investment as long as the emissions reduction targets are scalable – meaning a future government of either persuasion could dial them up, or wind them back – and as long as the mechanism isn’t the Coalition’s existing emissions reduction fund.

The Labor leader has also told the prime minister the opposition is open to CCS, which remains a controversial technology with many environmentalists, as long as projects are not funded through the national renewable energy bodies the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency.

But Albanese says Labor will not support domestic nuclear power. The Morrison government has flagged examining “emerging nuclear technologies” as part of Australia’s energy mix in the future in a new discussion paper kicking off the process of developing its much-vaunted technology investment roadmap. 

While Albanese has signalled that Labor cannot accept the Coalition’s emissions reduction fund – the heavily criticised policy that replaced Labor’s carbon price in 2013 – as the bipartisan mechanism, he says a future Labor government would not seek to unwind contracts entered during this parliament, including any contracts involving support for CCS.

Labor’s new position reflects an attempt by Albanese to balance divided views within his own ranks. Some in the right faction believe Labor’s commitment to climate policy ambition has cost the party electorally, and Labor will not win the next federal election unless it reconnects with workers in carbon-intensive industries in New South Wales and Queensland.

But it is also an effort to challenge Morrison to use the post Covid-19 recovery to display genuine bipartisanship in the service of fixing a problem that has festered in Australia for more than a decade. Albanese’s repositioning also comes as the major parties accelerate their campaigns in the marginal seat of Eden-Monaro, where climate change is an issue, with the byelection due on 4 July.

The Coalition has successfully weaponised climate change against Labor at every federal election since 2013, but the government is also under pressure from business groups and major institutions to end the policy uncertainty that is undermining investment in critical infrastructure.

Facing sustained pressure to adopt a 2050 target of net zero emissions, pressure it is continuing to resist despite signing the Paris agreement which has that ambition embedded within it, the government plans instead to develop the technology roadmap as the cornerstone of the Coalition’s mid-century emissions reduction strategy.

Given that the government has launched the roadmap, Labor is taking the opportunity to launch its own pivot on energy policy, and attempt to open the door to a new round of discussions.

A leading Australian business organisation, the AiGroup, has called for the two biggest economic challenges in memory – recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic and cutting greenhouse gas emissions – to be addressed together, saying that would boost economic growth and put the country on a firm long-term footing. A number of other community and investor groups have expressed similar sentiments.

In his letter to Morrison, Albanese says Australia has lacked a national energy policy since the renewable energy target was met in late 2019 and Morrison dumped Turnbull’s Neg shortly after taking the prime ministership. Labor adopted the Neg as policy during the last parliament in an effort to see whether any common ground could be reached between the major parties, but that proved fruitless.

The letter says the lack of a settled mechanism has increased investor uncertainty “and new investment in renewable energy generation fell by 50% in 2019, according to the Reserve Bank of Australia and industry analysis”.

“We have an opportunity to move past partisan approaches to energy policy, to draw on the community’s clear desire for more bipartisan approaches to difficult policy areas, and to finally deliver an enduring, effective and bipartisan energy policy for Australia,” Albanese writes.

Labor has adopted a net zero target by 2050 as policy post-election, but it remains unclear what interim emissions reduction targets will be. 

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Killing Australia’s democracy – first kill the ABC

Latest $84 million cuts rip the heart out of the ABC, and our democracy,    The Conversation, Alexandra Wake, Program Manager, Journalism, RMIT University, Michael Ward, PhD candidate, University of Sydney, 24 June 20

At the height of the coronavirus emergency, and on the back of devastating bushfires, Australia’s much awarded and trusted national broadcaster has again been forced to make major cuts to staff, services and programs. It is doing so to offset the latest $84 million budget shortfall as a result of successive cuts from the Coalition government.
In the latest cuts, wrapped up as part of the national broadcaster’s five-year plan,

  • 250 staff will lose their jobs
  • the major 7:45am news bulletin on local radio has been axed
  • ABC Life has lost staff but somehow expanded to become ABC Local
  • independent screen production has been cut by $5 million
  • ABC News Channel programming is still being reviewed………
  • Clearly the coronavirus pandemic has slashed Australia’s commercial media advertising revenues. But the problems in the media are a result of years of globalisation, platform convergence and audience fragmentation. In such a situation, Australia’s public broadcasters should be part of the solution for ensuring a diverse, vibrant media sector. Instead, it continues to be subject to ongoing budget cuts.

    Moreover, at a time when the public really cannot afford to be getting their news from Facebook or other social media outlets, cutting 250 people who contribute to some of Australia’s most reliable and quality journalism and storytelling – and literally saving lives during the bushfires – appear to be hopelessly shortsighted.

    The latest Digital News Report 2020 clearly showed the ABC is the media outlet Australians trust the most.[table on original shows this]……

  • the end of short wave radio services to the Northern Territory

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media | Leave a comment

Australian govt current energy policies will mean 11,000 renewable energy jobs lost

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy, politics | Leave a comment

Fukushima mothers still testing food etc for radiation

Nine years on, Fukushima’s mental health fallout lingers

As radiation from the Fukushima nuclear accident subsides, a damaging social and psychological legacy continues, Wired


By SOPHIE KNIGHT 24 June 20,  If it were not illegal, Ayumi Iida would love to test a dead body. Recently, she tested a wild boar’s heart. She’s also tested the contents of her vacuum cleaner and the filter of her car’s air conditioner. Her children are so used to her scanning the material contents of their life that when she cuts the grass, her son asks, “Are you going to test that too?”

Iida, who is 35, forbids her children from entering the sea or into forests. She agonises over which foods to buy. But no matter what she does, she can’t completely protect her children from radiation. It even lurks in their urine.

“Maybe he’s being exposed through the school lunch,” she says, puzzling over why her nine-year-old son’s urine showed two-and-a-half times the concentration of caesium that hers did, when she takes such care shopping. “Or maybe it’s from the soil outside where he plays. Or is it because children have a faster metabolism, so he flushes more out? We don’t know.”

Iida is a public relations officer at Tarachine, a citizens’ lab in Fukushima, Japan, that tests for radioactive contamination released from the 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Agricultural produce grown in the area is subject to government and supermarket testing, but Tarachine wants to provide people with an option to test anything, from foraged mushrooms to dust from their home. Iida tests anything unknown before feeding it to her four children. Recently, she threw out some rice she received as a present after finding its level of contamination – although 80 times lower than the government limit – unacceptably high. “My husband considered eating it ourselves, but it’s too much to cook two batches of rice for every meal. In the end we fed it to some seagulls.”

Tarachine is one of several citizen labs founded in the wake of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011, which obliterated a swathe of the country’s northwest coast and killed more than 18,000 people. The wave knocked out cooling systems at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, triggering a meltdown in three of the reactor cores and hydrogen explosions that sprayed radionuclides across the Fukushima prefecture. More than 160,000 people were forced to evacuate. A government decontamination programme has allowed evacuation orders to be lifted in many municipalities, but one zone is still off limits, with only short visits permitted.

Driven by a desire to find out precisely how much radiation there was in the environment and where, a group of volunteers launched Tarachine in Iwaki, a coastal city that escaped the worst of the radioactive plume and was not evacuated, through a crowdfunding campaign in November 2011. It is now registered as a non-profit organisation, and runs on donations.

In a windowless room controlled for temperature and humidity and dotted with screens showing graphs, two women sort and label samples, either collected by staff or sent in by the public: soil from back gardens, candied grasshoppers, seawater. In the beginning, mothers sent in litres of breastmilk. Tarachine initially charged a tenth of what a university lab would charge to make the testing accessible to as many people as possible; last year, they made it free.

To test for caesium-137, the main long-term contaminant released from the plant, staff finely chop samples and put them inside a gamma counter, a cylindrical grey machine that looks like a centrifuge. Tarachine’s machines are more accurate than the more commonly accessible measuring tools: at some public monitoring posts, shoppers can simply place their produce on top of a device to get a reading, but this can be heavily skewed by background radiation (waving a Geiger counter over food won’t give an accurate reading for the same reason). Tarachine tries to get as precise readings as possible; the lab’s machines give results to one decimal place, and they try to block out excess background radiation by placing bottles of water around the machines.

Measuring for strontium, a type of less penetrative beta radiation, is even more complicated: the food has to first be roasted to ash before being mixed with an acid and sifted. The whole process takes two to three days. Tarachine received training and advice from university radiation labs around the country, but the volunteers had to experiment with everyday food items that scientists had never tested. “There was no recipe like ‘Roast the leaf for two hours at so-and-so Celsius’, you know?” says Iida. “If it’s too burnt it’s no good. We also had to experiment with types of acid and how much of the acid to add.”

Japanese government standards for radiation are some of the most stringent in the world: the upper limit of radioactive caesium in food such as meat and vegetables is 100 becquerels per kilogram, compared with 1,250 in the European Union and 1,200 in the US (the becquerel unit measures how much ionizing radiation is released due to radioactive decay). Many supermarkets adhere to a tighter limit, proudly advertising that their produce contains less than 40 becquerels, or as few as 10. Tarachine aims for just 1 becquerel.

“How I think about it is, how much radiation was there in local rice before the accident? It was about 0.01 becquerel. So that’s what I want the standard to be,” says Iida. Continue reading

June 25, 2020 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

2,000 Covid-19 Cases in Severodvinsk, city that builds Russia’s nuclear submarines

The City That Builds Russia’s Nuclear Submarines Now Has Over 2,000 Covid-19 Cases, BThe Barents Observer, 24 June 20, 

Two naval construction yards in a northern Russian city near the site of last year’s mysterious nuclear testing accident have become new hotbeds for the coronavirus.

Severodvinsk is near the Nyonoksa testing site where an August 2019 explosion during a rocket engine test killed five nuclear workers and led to a radiation spike. The building of nuclear subs and other naval vessels continues despite the increasingly serious virus situation.

Approximately 43% of all infections in the Arkhangelsk region are in Severodvinsk, regional authorities recently announced.

That indicates that there now are more than 2,000 cases in the city.

The lion’s share of the people infected are affiliated with Sevmash and Zvezdochka, the two naval yards.

Despite the introduction of protective measures, the virus has continued to spread among the local population of about 180,000.

In the past week alone, more than 320 new cases have been registered in town, most of them among the shipbuilders, a statistics overview said.

Temperature testing is conducted at entry points to the yards as well as on the construction premises, and workers are required to wear masks.

But the mask requirement is not observed, a local employee told the Sever.Realii newspaper in early June. Every worker is given 10 masks every five days along with a liter of antiseptic.

But most workers still do not wear the masks and ignore social distancing rules, the worker said.

There are about 30,000 employees at the Sevmash and about 11,000 workers at the Zvezdochka.

While the Zvezdochka engages primarily in vessel repair and upgrades, the Sevmash builds nuclear submarines. At the moment, there are at least eight new vessels under construction onsite, among them four Borey-class and four Yasen-class subs. AT TOP https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2020/06/24/the-city-that-builds-russias-nuclear-submarines-now-has-over-2000-covid-19-cases-a70681

June 25, 2020 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Up to 40 Energy jobs to be cut from CSIRO

CSIRO to pull plug on energy jobs,   https://www.miragenews.com/csiro-to-pull-plug-on-energy-jobs/    CSIRO management have announced this week that up to 40 jobs will be cut from its energy team, including key scientists, engineers, and researchers.The union representing the public sector including CSIRO workers, the CPSU, are calling on the government to halt cuts to the CSIRO.

These are the latest in a series of staff cuts to hit the CSIRO, bringing the total number of job losses to 619 this financial year alone, due to the impact of the governments’ Average Staffing Level Cap and continued budget cuts.

Projects that could affected as a result of these Energy job cuts are upstream oil and gas, the Low Emissions Technologies program, and post combustion CO2 capture research.

Four energy sites will be affected including Kensington (Western Australia), Clayton (Victoria), Newcastle and North Ryde (New South Wales).

Quotes Attributable to CPSU National Secretary Melissa Donnelly:

“There is no doubt that these cuts will have an enduring impact on the national capability to develop and implement energy and climate policy. At a time when the government should be focussed on the future of our energy needs, they are more concerned with cutting jobs.”

The CSIRO is on track to lose more than 500 jobs by 1 July and that does not include these latest cuts in Energy. We need to be investing in the CSIRO not cutting hundreds upon hundreds of jobs.”

“It’s time for the government to scrap the ASL Cap and invest in Australia’s scientific resources. If the past 6 months have shown us anything, its that the CSIRO is more important than ever.”

Quotes Attributable to CPSU CSIRO Section Secretary Sam Popovski:

“Job losses of any sort in CSIRO are bad news. CSIRO Chief Executive Larry Marshall needs to do a lot more to protect CSIRO jobs and start to make a case for increased public funding.”

“The recent King Review indicates that Australia’s energy policy remains far from settled and diminishing CSIRO’s specialist capabilities in this area harms government decision-making and future innovation.”

“There are growing concerns that the October federal budget may feature spending cuts and Dr Marshall and the Board must ensure that the case for CSIRO public funding is heard loud and clear over coming months,” Mr Popovski said.

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, employment, energy, politics | Leave a comment

Retain integrity of renewable energy agencies: ACF

Retain integrity of renewable energy agencies: ACF,    https://www.miragenews.com/retain-integrity-of-renewable-energy-agencies-acf/   24 June 20, The Australian Conservation Foundation has welcomed Labor leader Anthony Albanese’s commitment to the integrity of the nation’s key renewable energy agencies, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

“Any moves to dilute the mandates of ARENA and the CEFC to allow them to invest in fossil fuel projects would be a perversion of their important and very successful clean energy investment functions,” said ACF’s climate program manager Gavan McFadzean.

“Australia is positioned to be a renewable energy superpower – any move to change the direction of ARENA and the CEFC is a step in the wrong direction.

The Australian Conservation Foundation has welcomed Labor leader Anthony Albanese’s commitment to the integrity of the nation’s key renewable energy agencies, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

“Any moves to dilute the mandates of ARENA and the CEFC to allow them to invest in fossil fuel projects would be a perversion of their important and very successful clean energy investment functions,” said ACF’s climate program manager Gavan McFadzean.

“Australia is positioned to be a renewable energy superpower – any move to change the direction of ARENA and the CEFC is a step in the wrong direction.

“It is important that Anthony Albanese has today closed the door on costly, high-risk, unpopular nuclear energy.

“The CEFC was created with a specific purpose: to help mobilise finance into clean energy.

“The CEFC has made profits and provided great public value by driving down the cost of new clean energy technologies, speeding the transition to clean electricity supply through projects that support reliability of electricity and helping Australia access the enormous benefits available through improved energy productivity.

“The coal and gas lobbies have tried for years to convince the Federal Government to manipulate the CEFC’s mandate to suit the interests of the fossil fuel industry.

“We urge the Federal Government to commit to maintain the remits of ARENA and the CEFC as renewable bodies.

“ACF welcomes moves towards a bipartisan approach to energy and the desire to agree to an emissions reduction mechanism that can be strengthened by future governments.”

June 25, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy, politics | Leave a comment

Due to First Nation’s opposition, Canadian nuclear company ends plan to dump nuclear waste near Lake Huron

Ontario Power Generation Formally Ends Effort To Place Nuclear Storage Site Near Lake Huron, WKAR

By BEN THORP 24  June 20, A Canadian company has officially ended efforts to place an intermediate-level nuclear storage facility along the shore of Lake Huron. The decision comes after the Saugeen-Ojibway nation, on whose land the nuclear site was proposed, voted overwhelmingly against the project.

In letters sent in May, Ontario Power Generation officially withdrew from an environmental assessment of the project and an application for a construction license. Those withdrawals were first reported in the Detroit Free Press.

Fred Kuntz is with OPG. He said after fifteen years the company decided to look elsewhere to build a storage facility.

“You need three things in Ontario for a project like this to proceed. You need good geology, which we had, you need municipal support, which we had, and you need indigenous support. Without that, we couldn’t proceed with the project.”

Kuntz said the company will begin looking for alternate locations. …….

In letters sent in May, Ontario Power Generation officially withdrew from an environmental assessment of the project and an application for a construction license. Those withdrawals were first reported in the Detroit Free Press.

Fred Kuntz is with OPG. He said after fifteen years the company decided to look elsewhere to build a storage facility.

“You need three things in Ontario for a project like this to proceed. You need good geology, which we had, you need municipal support, which we had, and you need indigenous support. Without that, we couldn’t proceed with the project.”

Kuntz said the company will begin looking for alternate locations. …..A second, high-level nuclear storage facility could still be built near Lake Huron. The Canadian Nuclear Waste Management Organization is considering two possible sites for a facility, one of which is near the lake.

A spokesperson for the organization said the Saugeen-Ojibway vote was not a referendum on their plan

The organization is expected to select a site for the facility by 2023. https://www.wkar.org/post/ontario-power-generation-formally-ends-effort-place-nuclear-storage-site-near-lake-huron#stream/0

June 25, 2020 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Yes, Virginia, accidents in transport of nuclear wastes DO happen

Brattleboro Reformer 22nd June 2020, An oversized flatbed truck carrying an empty nuclear waste cask headed to the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant drove onto a soft shoulder on Route 11 in Andover and tipped over Friday morning, setting off a 36-hour effort to retrieve the cask and reopen the busy east-west highway. The cask is slated to be used at the Vernon nuclear power plant which is undergoing demolition and decommissioning. The cask, which weighs upwards of 50 tons, is used as an on-site cask to transfer waste on site, according to Curtis Roberts, a spokesman for Orano, one of the companies involved in the
decommissioning project with main owner NorthStar Vermont Yankee LLC.

He said the cask is owned and manufactured by Orano [Ed note: formerly AREVA, which went bankrupt] . Orano is disassembling the nuclear reactor core, which contains high levels of radioactivity.

https://www.reformer.com/stories/truck-carrying-empty-nuclear-waste-cask-crashes,607654

June 25, 2020 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Can we manage the intermittency of renewables and attain 100% renewables?

June 25, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The inflexibility of nuclear power is becoming a costly problem for the UK

Because of the inflexibility of the AGRs, RE suppliers are shut off first. This is explained in a recent report by the newly-formed pressure group, 100 percentrenewable uk, which explains that the inflexible nature of nuclear power is instrumental in forcing the National Grid to turn off large amounts of wind power (ie in the jargon to be ‘constrained’) in Scotland when there is too much electricity on the network. 

This appears nonsensical as the Grid is turning off cheap renewables to preserve expensive nuclear, and then paying large compensation payments to them to do so.

UK Electricity: Renewables and the problem with inflexible nuclear,  Ian Fairlea, June 21, 2020

In recent years, the share of the UK’s electricity supplied by renewable energy (RE) sources has increased substantially to the point that RE is now the second largest source after gas: It now supplies 20% to 25% of our electrical needs. This is greater than the amount supplied by nuclear – about 15% to 18%. Coal, hydroelectric, and mainly gas (~40%) constitute the other sources. See chart [on original] for Britain’s electrical power supplies in 2019.

Why are AGR reactors inflexible?  Continue reading

June 25, 2020 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Costing the Earth – New Nuclear is Beyond Expensive Beyond Dangerous and often Beyond Operational- so why is it touted as “Clean Energy” —

Excellent Analysis from Dr Ian Fairlie ….. UK Electricity: Renewables and the problem with inflexible nuclear June 21, 2020 In recent years, the share of the UK’s electricity supplied by renewable energy (RE) sources has increased substantially to the point that RE is now the second largest source after gas: It now supplies 20% to […]

Costing the Earth – New Nuclear is Beyond Expensive Beyond Dangerous and often Beyond Operational- so why is it touted as “Clean Energy” —

June 25, 2020 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment