Tag Archives: nuclear power

Blowout Week 126

This weeks’ stories include Brexit and investment in renewables, oil discoveries at their lowest level since 1952, Saudi strategy paying off, nuclear in Egypt and South Africa, coal in Japan, Nigeria on the brink of collapse, nuclear workers strike in France, oil breaks $50/bbl, yet another setback for Hinkley Point, the EC to lend Spain 2.13 billion to shut down coal plants, the EIB forks out 525 million for the Beatrice wind farm, energy independence for Israel, G7 nations to end fossil fuel subsidies by 2025, Australia opts out of latest UN climate change report, goodbye El Niño and hello La Niña, the CERN cloud experiment casts doubt on global warming predictions, the “internet of things” and how climate change is poisoning our food. Continue reading

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Decarbonising UK Power Generation – The Nuclear Option

How to decarbonise UK Power generation is a topic of heated debate, with renewables enthusiasts often keen to argue that there are a range of obstacles to the use of nuclear generation to meet more than a small proportion of total demand. Reasons cited are availability of space/sites, grid integration and the challenges of meeting variable demand. So, is an all-nuclear UK grid (with the small sleight of hand of pumped storage hydro in support) potentially viable? Continue reading

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The looming Nordic energy crisis

Nuclear power in Sweden has become uneconomical. Wholesale prices of electricity in Sweden have been much lower than the breakeven price for nuclear generation. Electricity has been sold at a record low price of €20 per megawatt hour (MWh), while the cost of generating nuclear power has been in the same ballpark, or even slightly higher. Continue reading

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Blowout Week 115

There seems to be a growing consensus that the oil price slump is finally nearing an end. Plus Obama’s plan to cut methane omissions, lawsuits threaten Japan’s nuclear revival, South Africa wants nuclear plant bids, France to close Fessenheim, Indonesia running out of coal, Hinkley finance chief quits, Britain’s “smart energy revolution”, the UK, Ireland and France still lagging on EU renewable targets, the Big Six losing even more money, tidal power from the Shetlands, US considers prosecuting “climate deniers” and the perilous state of the Mosul dam. Continue reading

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Blowout Week 113

This week Nicholas Stern is in the spotlight followed by US shale producers are finally buckling – or are they? Plus the budding US/Russia natural gas war, China now number one in wind, nuclear power plant costs, EDF calls for EU market reform, German solar “too much of a good thing”, Drax threatens a shutdown, the Didcot accident, Swansea tidal has a competitor, Solar Scotland, the ITER nuclear fusion machine, another battery storage breakthrough, the global warming pause is real and sea levels are rising faster than ever. Continue reading

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Blowout week 112

Stories this week, include nuclear in South Australia and South Africa, Tesla batteries in Hawaii, Scotland facing a power crisis, how EDF’s decision to keep Torness open undermines democracy, the impacts of Brexit on UK renewables, the world’s largest floating solar PV plant, National Grid signs up for “footroom”, the Gatwick Gusher, Patrick Moore’s $100,000 CO2 wager and what really happened to 150,000 Adelie penguins. Continue reading

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An Energy Plan for France and the UK

Environmental activist group Bellona report that President Hollande wishes to reduce France’s dependency on nuclear power. It suddenly struck me that France will have nuclear power stations that it no longer needs and the UK needs nuclear power stations that it cannot afford to build. The solution is absurdly simple. The UK can simply contract to buy 20 GW of nuclear power from France while France presses on to modernise its infrastructure by deploying more bio-energy, wind and solar power. Continue reading

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The record of recent Man-made CO2 emissions: 1965 -2014

If Greens wants to save the world from CO2 emissions this data wholly vindicates the use of Nuclear power for electricity generation. Their preference for Renewable Energy, with the closure of fossil fuel generation, may destroy the progress and benefits of western civilization. Continue reading

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Blowout week 110

Blowout this week includes the trials and tribulations of Saudi Arabia and OPEC, US O&G company ratings cut, Obama proposes $10/bbl tax on US O&G companies, Spain presses EC to save its coal industry, UK and German emissions fall, Hinkley financing concerns spread to Wylfa, Fiddler’s Ferry closure, the world’s largest wind farm and energy storage finally poised for a breakthrough. Continue reading

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Blowout Week 107

This week’s Blowout features one of the few projected benefits of anthropogenic global warming – it will postpone the onset of the next ice age “by at least 100,000 years”. One assumes our descendants will be duly grateful. Thirty-four more informative stories below the fold in a bumper blowout. Continue reading

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Technical and Economic Analysis of the European Electricity System with 60% RES – A Review

The EU has a strategy to increase the amount of electricity that will be generated from renewable energy sources (RES) to 55% by 2050. About 57% of the RES in Europe is currently hydro and there is little opportunity to expand hydro. Thus most of the projected increase in RES, which constitutes about 10% of electricity generation in 2014, will be from wind and solar PV, reaching 20% in 2020 and 30% in 2030. The EDF paper examined the future impacts, challenges and changes to the power system of increased wind and solar PV renewable energy sources (variable RES) on the European electricity grid….. Continue reading

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The Destruction of Scottish Power

The Scottish Government has set a target for renewable sources to generate the equivalent of 100 per cent of Scotland’s gross annual electricity consumption by 2020. The intended consequence of this policy has been the closure of Cockenzie coal fired power station with Longannet to follow this year with a total loss of 3.6 GW dispatchable capacity. Can Scotland keep the lights on? Continue reading

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Blowout week 105

This week’s Blowout features the plight of two of Europe’s major electric power suppliers – RWE and EON – who because of market pricing mechanisms that favor renewable energy over fossil fuel generation are rapidly losing value. What happens if they are driven out of business? Plus Saudi Arabia budgeting for $29 oil in 2016…… Continue reading

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Blowout week 104

In a departure from the normal format I’m kicking off today with a few stories from Germany. Else where there is news of renewables subsidies being cut everywhere, nuclear power expansion everywhere bar Europe, oil price woes, concentrating solar power in Chile, the marijuana harvest straining the US grid and France opts for cheese power over nuclear power. Continue reading

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Blowout Week 101

The focus this week is on OPEC and the lack of action there until at least June and on COP21 talks in Paris. Astronauts on the Space Station have warned of dire consequences of climate change and deforestation visible from space while the EU approves a £1 billion subsidy to convert Lynemouth coal power station to burn wood pellets imported from North America. Continue reading

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Green Gone

UK chancellor George Osborne made his Autumn spending statement on Wednesday 25th November. To a large extent he chose to kick the economic can down the road once more. But the published documentation has this most interesting section on Energy … Continue reading

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Blowout week 96

US shale oil gets a stay of execution, coal-to-liquids in Botswana, CSP in Morocco, wind in the Irish Sea, CO2 emissions to keep rising, dismal earnings from oil majors, Turkey sues Gazprom, China to build offshore nukes, German coal plants now “facilities of last resort”…. Continue reading

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Blowout week 94

The UK National Grid warns of possible brownouts. When? Within ten days: Mail:  National Grid warns of brownouts British households are facing the prospect of ‘brown-outs’ this autumn – a reduction in electricity supply that could lead to appliances not … Continue reading

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Blowout Week 90

The oil wars are coming down to the wire. More on the travails of US shale oil below the fold, plus a looming shortage of US natural gas, the forthcoming uranium boom, China burning more coal than thought, nuclear plant decommissioning problems in Germany, more threats to the UK grid, Scotland’s SMAUG anti-fracking group, Australia’s greens unhappy with Turnbull, Ireland missing its renewables target, the Paris climate talks, climate scientists demand that skeptics be prosecuted, killer germs from melting Arctic Ice and mutant fish from Fukushima. Continue reading

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Who Killed Hamako Watanabe?

Four months after three reactors melted down at the Fukushima plant following a devastating earthquake and tsunami, Hamako Watanabe and her husband lost their home, their jobs and the prospect of restoring their lives. She doused herself in kerosene and set herself on fire after slipping into depression. Her husband, Mikio Watanabe, found her charred body. “We lost everything,” her widower told CNN in 2012. “We were forced to evacuate. We lost our jobs. I lost my wife in such a terrible way. I really lost everything. Continue reading

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