1. From the TimesFreePress via the Nuclear Townhall – The Tennessee Valley Authority plans to revive one of its unfinished nuclear reactors from the 1970s before pursuing the next generation of nuclear power.
TVA directors will be asked today to spend $250 million in the next fiscal year for engineering and equipment work for the possible completion of the Unit 1 reactor at the Bellefonte Nuclear Power Plant in Hollywood, Ala.
If approved by the TVA board and federal regulators, the mothballed unit could be completed and generate power by 2018 — 44 years after work first began at the 1,600-acre site on the Tennessee River.
ellefonte was targeted by the nuclear industry four years ago as the first test site for the AP-1000, which is advertised as simpler and safer than older reactors.
But the industry has since switched the AP-1000 test site to Georgia Power Co.’s Vogtle plant near Waynesboro, Ga.
“If you completely risk evaluate the project, it is about $1 billion less to finish the existing unit versus the AP-1000 and there is about a 12-month earlier completion with the existing reactor,” Bhatnagar said
Nuclear industry group leads efforts to overcome regulatory barriers to
commercial success. In an exclusive interview with this blog, Paul Genoa, Director of Policy Development at NEI, emphasized the serious nature of the work.
“This isn’t a forum for people to trade marketing slides,” he said. “We are
looking for ways to meet the NRC’s requirements, but in new or innovative
ways that don’t impose unnecessary costs on small reactors.”
What NEI hopes to do, according to Genoa, “is to create a new regulatory
paradigm for small reactors,” and to do it in the next 18 months.
3. Older and Unthinking: the Grandmas at Yankee from Yes Versmon Yankee
4. And the second from Yes Vermont Yankee is about the eugenics material (a lengthy quote from Alice Stewart) that they hand out at meetings. They hand it out at many meetings, but I reference a a recent PSB meeting
5. From Canadian Energy Issues – Countdown to Zero, a new documentary about the threat of nuclear weapons in today’s world, doesn’t mention Megatons to Megawatts or the MOX Fuel Fabrication Facility, the two largest-ever efforts to turn swords into ploughshares. But Steve Aplin still thinks the film is worth seeing.
6. Power industry Trend has nuclear computers systems are complex but complex computer systems have been done before. Summary: NRC and other regulators are concerned about the complexity and independence of computer systems for new reactor designs. Such concern is not unexpected. It seems that the NRC and the nuclear industry is facing some of the same computer system issues encountered by the FDA and regulated Biotech and Pharmaceutical manufacturing.
It was written by three Oak Ridge scientists, including my father, 33 years ago. It looks at the health and safety consequences of choosing coal rather than nuclear power as an energy source. They write, “great concern has been expressed by scientists that the projected release of CO2 from fossil fuel combustion may lead to severe changes in global climate by the end of this century or shortly thereafter. On the other hand, the nuclear fuel cycle may release significant quantities of radioactive gases to the atmosphere and radioactive liquids to the hydrosphere. However, technology is available to contain most of these gases if it becomes necessary, and the potential effects of these radioactive gases and liquids are minimal in comparison to the biological harm associated with emissions from burning coal (variously estimated to be 3 to 125 excess deaths per year from a 1000-MWe coal burning plant).” If anything they underestimated the problems they foresaw.
8. Charles Barton and nucleargreen also wrote a two part post about Australian climate scientist and pro, nuclear blogger, Barry Brook: