Energy News Roundup – Renewable Plan in China, US Starts a new Uranium mine, GE Helps Indian Nuclear Build

1. GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy supports India’s plans to expand electricity supply

India plans to expand its electricity production from nuclear energy more than tenfold, from 4.1 gigawatts (GW) today to 63 GW by 2032. Of that total, an estimated 30-40 GW would come from imported reactor technologies. India has set aside two sites for potential 10,000-MW nuclear power stations featuring reactor designs from U.S.-based providers. One of the two sites is in the western state of Gujarat and the other is in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh. GEH could help India’s nuclear utility build multiple third-generation nuclear reactors at one of the two sites.

The 1,350-MWe ABWR, GEH offers the world’s only commercially proven Generation III reactor with successful construction and operational experience. The first of four ABWRs now in service went online in 1996, and four additional units are being built today.

GEH’s 1,520-MWe ESBWR design is Generation III+ technology offering advantages including passive safety features, a further simplified design and even higher safety margins than the already safe, deployed fleet of nuclear reactors. The ESBWR currently is progressing in the design certification process of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

2. By 2020, renewable energy should account for 15 percent of China’s primary energy consumption, supplying the equivalent of 600 million tonnes of coal, the China Daily said this weekend.

It cited a renewable energy blueprint laid out by Han Wenke, director-general of the Energy Research Institute under top planning body, the National Development and Reform Commission.

By 2030, renewable energy’s share should rise to 20 percent of the national energy mix, displacing 1 billion tonnes of coal, Han said, and by 2050, it would supply one-third of China’s energy, displacing two billion tonnes of coal, the paper said.

3. White Canyon Uranium’s Daneros mine in Utah has produced its first uranium ore.

Daneros, the first new uranium mine to be permitted in Utah in 30 years, is ultimately expected to produce some 500,000 pounds U3O8 (227 tonnes U3O8) per year.

4. The Time online UK reports that BP (British Petroleum) claims that new technology including smart meters, “intelligent” electricity grids and teleconferencing systems could cut global carbon dioxide emissions by up to 20 per cent.

The UK Government sets out details today of a £9 billion plan to introduce smart meters in all 26 million British homes by 2020. However, the company (BP) advising the Government on the technology said yesterday that there was no reason “in principle” why the introduction could not be completed four years ahead of the government schedule.

Consumers will be rewarded for using energy-hungry appliances such as dishwashers and tumble dryers at off-peak times, such as between 1am and 5am, allowing for a reduction in the total number of power stations needed to power Britain.

Inaccurate billing should also end because suppliers would receive exact data.

Mr Abbosh said: “The rapid roll-out of smart meters is critical if they are to help address the generation gap forecast for 2014 to 2017, as meters will help reduce and manage consumption. We expect the industry to be ready for mass deployment by 2013, so full deployment by 2016 is possible, albeit challenging.”

Mr Svanberg also said that large chunks of global air, road and rail passenger traffic could be removed through the use of teleconferencing and telecommuting.

“We continue to travel the world just to have meetings . . . [but] you can replace an awful lot of meetings with teleconferencing.”

Transport accounts for 14 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. The bulk of these are from road transport, at 76 per cent of total transport emissions, and aviation, at 12 per cent