Saturday, November 27, 2010

29th Carnival of Nuclear Energy Blogs

A weekly roundup of interesting posts

carnivalThis is the weekly Carnival of Nuclear Energy Bloggers with contributions from the leading pro-nuclear blogs in North America. The blog posts here are selected by the bloggers themselves as the best posts for the past week. If you are looking for the voice the nuclear renaissance, you will find it here.

Vermont Mythbusters

At Yes Vermont Yankee Meredith Angwin breaks down three myths about the future of the Vermont Yankee reactor. She answers anti-nuclear legends with the facts.

  • Myth One: Nobody will offer for that old rust bucket
  • Myth Two: Vermont Yankee doesn't have a license to operate past 2012, so nobody will want it.
  • Myth Three: The shortfall in the Decommissioning Fund means nobody will buy the plant

Cuomo peddling baloney about Indian Point

A writer and a blogger collaborated to publish a guest opinion column Nov 22 in the New York Daily News, the city's largest circulation newspaper, that said Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo must not shut Indian Point nuclear plant, which provides safe, clean and cheap power.

Gwyneth Cravens and Dan Yurman wrote The Indian Point Energy Center in Westchester County produces 2,000 megawatts of electricity - about one-third of the metro area's needs. It powers Metro-North and the subway system, which transport an average weekday ridership of 5.1 million.

Like the circus strongman at the base of a human pyramid, Indian Point supports the statewide grid of high-voltage transmission lines that protects against power failures.

baloneySo why does Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo want to shut it down? He says it's unsafe, a target for terrorists and that replacement power can be found without short- or long-term consequences.

Cuomo and some of his political supporters appear to get their ideas about Indian Point from watching the TV cartoon series "The Simpsons." Cravens and Yurman bury the baloney by proving with the facts these claims are untrue.

China and India continue to lead the nuclear renaissance

At Next Big Future, Brian Wang reports that in India ground breaking for the two indigenous design 700 MW units, in Gujarat state last January will lead to completion of two new reactors in 2015 and 2016.

China is reducing coal consumption with plans for more than forty new reactors. For instance, Unit 1 of the Changjiang plant is scheduled to begin operating by the end of 2014. Unit 2 is set to start up in 2015.

The total cost of the first two units is put at $3 billion. More than 70% of the equipment for the Changjiang plant is to be made in China.

According to CNNC, the construction of the nuclear power reactors on Hainan will reduce the province's consumption of coal by more than 300 million tonnes annually.

Can you talk "nuclear," or can the nuclear folks talk in plain English?

At the American Nuclear Society winter meeting held in Las Vegas, two veteran public relations professionals held an interactive workshop to generate ideas about how to communicate nuclear issues at the federal level. Following their presentation on the changes to the incoming Congress, there was an interactive brainstorming session on ideas for communicating more effectively. The full report is on the ANS Nuclear Cafe blog.

This always-popular workshop was hosted by Mimi Limbach, ANS PI Committee member and partner, Potomac Communications Group, and Craig Piercy, ANS Washington representative and senior vice president of Federal Relations, Bose Public Affairs Group.

At a new crossroads?

Gail Marcus reports on Nuke Power Talk that a recent news item has reported that the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) just gained a new member country, Poland, but at the same time, has been informed that one of its earliest and most active member countries, the United Kingdom, intends to leave the agency as a budget-tightening measure within their government. As a former Deputy Director-General of the NEA, she felt that she might be able to shed some light on what these membership changes might mean.

Solar photovoltaics are not competitive with nuclear power

solar panelCharles Barton writes at NuclearGreen that charts of the performance of Germany's installed photovoltaic capacity show that when the sun goes down the light go out. He provides data some measures of how well German PV is performing on a real time and daily basis.

For example, at 2:28 PM on November 20, 2010. Germany's 15.17 GWs of installed PV capacity is currently producing 1.8 GWs of electricity, already well past its peak output for the day.

News media must pay attention to its own coverage

At Atomic Insights Rod Adams writes he is surprised just how long it takes the advertiser supported media to recognize an important story. For instance, This morning, MSNBC and Bloomberg had both noticed that Westinghouse had transferred 75,000 documents relating to the design and construction of AP1000 nuclear reactor plants to China. One of those sources linked to a November 23, 2010 Financial Times report titled US group gives China details of nuclear technology.

Neither one of them linked to a June 2007 article titled China may export technology learned by building modern reactors that warned about the implications of a signed technology transfer agreement that was an integral part of Westinghouse's sale of four AP1000s in March of 2007.

U.S. missing the boat on the nuclear renaissance

missed-the-boatAreva North America: Next Energy Blog advises readers to turn their attention to a brilliant piece published in The American Spectator’s October issue, William Tucker synthesizes one of the biggest issues surrounding the Nuclear Revival—the United States is not part of it.

Not only is the nation lagging behind on construction, training, and investments for a technology that provides huge amounts (1,000+ megawatts) of carbon-free energy, but the country has no clear outlook for when it will break out of this quagmire holding back the development of future energy security.

TVA could buy a six pack of nuclear power

While work on big reactors is lagging, at CoolHandNuke the story is that the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) could be the first customer for B&W's 125 MW small modular reactors (SMRs) – six of them. At an estimated $4,000/Kw, the purchase price would be $500 million each or a total of $3 billion for all six. TVA will evaluate the SMRs for its Clinch River site in Tennessee. If TVA decides to go forward, the first two units could be delivered by 2020.

Ontario tries again to go nuclear

After walking away from the $20 billion bid process for new reactors at Darlington last year, the provincial government says it will try again to go nuclear. The blog of the Nuclear Energy Institute, NEI Nuclear Notes, reports the government announced plans this week to spend billions of dollars more on nuclear reactors, wind and solar projects and to eliminate coal plants by 2014.

Nuclear energy is to receive the largest chunk of capital spending at C$33 billion, followed by C$14 billion for wind power, C$9 billion for solar power and C$4.6 billion for hydro- electricity. The plan also marked C$12 billion for conservation, C$9 billion for transmission lines, C$4 billion for biomass, and C$1.88 billion for natural gas.

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