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rboyd

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #450 on: July 04, 2017, 10:41:00 PM »
New cost escalation for EDF's Hinkley Point C project (UK)

Cost escalation and delay in delivery, it just gets worse with this project.

"The costs of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant project in Somerset (United Kingdom) have jumped by £2.2bn (€2.5bn) and reach now a total of £20.3bn (€23.1bn), while the risk of a deferral in the delivery (COD) of the project is estimated at 15 months for Unit 1 and 9 months for Unit 2. The first reactor would then be commissioned in 2027 instead of late 2025. As a result, the project rate of return is expected to drop from 9% to 8.2%.

EDF has reported that £1.5bn (€1.7bn) of the cost escalation is due to a “better understanding” of the construction operations needed and of the British regulatory requirements, while the estimated delay on the reactors is expected to increase the costs by a further £0.7bn (€0.8bn). However, EDF is still targeting the end of 2025 as the initial commissioning date."

https://www.enerdata.net/publications/daily-energy-news/new-cost-escalation-edfs-hinkley-point-c-project-uk.html

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #451 on: July 04, 2017, 11:58:56 PM »
Supposedly the extra cost will not be charged to UK electricity purchasers.  That means that the extra cost is going to be mostly eaten by the French government (and China?).  IIRC the French government owns about 85% of the French nuclear industry stock.

I wonder if they overpriced their bid anticipating something like this would happen or if they're going to be subsidizing nuclear in the UK.

tombond

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #452 on: July 14, 2017, 03:47:34 AM »
An open letter to French president Emmanuel Macron from environmentalists led by Jim Hansen warned that closing nuclear power plants would be a step backward for France.

http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/V-Environmentalists-appeal-to-Macron-for-nuclear-0406171.html

Key points from the letter include.

Nobody has done more for advancing clean energy on the grid than France. In light of this knowledge, we are writing to express our alarm at your decision to move France away from clean nuclear power.

Any reduction in France's nuclear generation will increase fossil fuel generation and pollution given the low capacity factors and intermittency of solar and wind.

Whereas France has some of the cheapest and cleanest electricity in Europe, Germany has some of the most expensive and dirtiest.

The French nuclear program has historically been the envy of the world.  It demonstrated in the 1970s and 80s that the decarbonization of an industrialized country's electricity sector is in fact possible.

For France, the next necessary step to help combat climate change and improve air quality is to increase clean electricity from all non-fossil sources and massively reduce fossil fuels used in heating and the transportation sector.  Nuclear power must play a central role in this.

etienne

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #453 on: July 14, 2017, 07:08:32 AM »
I heard yesterday on the radio that Germany is able to close the nuclear reactors and to reduce coal use for electricity production.  I personnaly believe that nuclear brings more problems than solutions. Fossil fuels are also used when building the reactors, when storing the trash, when dismantling the reactor and when managing accidents, so it is not as clean as it looks like. Some of the people who signed work directly for the nuclear industry, the other ones, I don't know.

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #454 on: July 14, 2017, 08:02:01 AM »
Hansen needs to learn more and pontificate less.

France is replacing the 17 reactors they plan on closing with wind and solar.  France is already installing the RE in order to be ready for reactor closing.

France has higher wholesale electricity prices than Germany.



Aside from  that France did not build nuclear in order to lower their carbon footprint.  France built nuclear because they were using a lot of oil to generate electricity and OPEC started jerking the world around.  Now France's reactor fleet is wearing out and it doesn't make sense to replace them with more nuclear since the cost would be so very high. 


numerobis

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #455 on: July 14, 2017, 04:39:48 PM »
...Fossil fuels are also used when building the reactors, when storing the trash, when dismantling the reactor and when managing accidents, so it is not as clean as it looks like...

Last figures I saw in the IPCC were that wind and solar have the lowest carbon intensity per kWh; hydro and nuclear were around twice as bad. Then natural gas about 5x or 10x (I forget) compared to hydro or nuclear. That's looking at the whole supply chain, amortizing appropriately for the construction. There's huge variability in these figures: a dam made of concrete is a lot more carbon-intensive than one made of clay and rock, for instance; a solar panel made using coal-powered electricity is far worse than one made from cleaner sources; a solar panel installed in a rainy place does worse than one installed in a sunny spot, etc.

The overall picture: nuclear is more carbon-intensive than wind and solar. But it's a *lot* cleaner than any fossil fuel. A nuclear refurbish could well be about on par with new wind or solar, because you don't have to build new cooling towers and a reactor containment building and so on (but you do need to refine uranium etc).

However, it'd be far, far more expensive in dollar terms, and slow to build.

TerryM

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #456 on: July 14, 2017, 07:33:18 PM »
I know nothing of the subject, but wonder what the carbon costs of closing down & cleaning up a nuclear plant are, in comparison to the carbon cost of refurbishing one?


Terry

rboyd

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #457 on: July 14, 2017, 08:42:32 PM »
You have to close them down at some point and therefore take the carbon cost

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #458 on: July 15, 2017, 12:10:24 AM »
The carbon load of closing is (I imagine) fairly fixed.  If you can extend the life of a reactor that would mean more GWh of electricity produced and lower the per GWh average.

The problem for nuclear is that many of the paid off plants are financially struggling.  The wholesale price of electricity barely covers the cost of operating the plant.  If the plant spends a lot of money refurbishing then they may not be able to pay the bill.

This is a something that I think few, very few, people saw coming.  The unaffordability of new nuclear has been obvious for a few years as we watched the cost of NG and wind falling.  But it didn't occur to anyone that I've encountered that paid off reactors in good repair might be priced out of the market.


ghoti

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #459 on: July 15, 2017, 06:26:22 AM »
The cost of refurbishment is astronomical! It is extremely complicated and can be risky. Ontario is spending half a billion to build a mock up of the plant they are refurbishing to make sure the workers are trained well enough to handle the actual refurbishment.

I suspect that extending the life of nuclear plants is far less fraught and expensive than decommissioning - especially when no safe permanent nuclear disposal site exists in the country.

etienne

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #460 on: July 15, 2017, 07:50:52 AM »
Furthermore, if you look at the costs of a nuclear accident, you can say that nuclear industry makes business without insurance regarding the risks. If this cost would be calculated as subsidies, I guess this would change the picture.

TerryM

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #461 on: July 15, 2017, 07:08:06 PM »
I was thinking specifically of the costs to the environment. Monetary costs I believe can be adjusted when carbon taxes are applied. A coal, or even gas plant might be viable with no carbon tax, but extremely expensive to operate otherwise, nuclear might be expensive with no carbon tax. but very reasonable should carbon taxes be applied.


Building the facility released a lot of GHG, a certain amount will be released when decommissioning it, if refurbishing can be done while releasing less than a new build would, and this eliminates one of the decommissioning cycles, wouldn't this be the ecologically correct path?
I'm not advocating new nuclear, just exploring the possibility of keeping those already built on line.


Terry

longwalks1

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #462 on: July 16, 2017, 12:54:51 AM »
in re life extension - Neutron embrittlement.  Also concrete does have a life span aside from radiation.  . 

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #463 on: July 16, 2017, 06:32:02 PM »
nuclear might be expensive with no carbon tax. but very reasonable should carbon taxes be applied.

If coal was required to pay its full cost paid off nuclear would be much cheaper than paid off coal.  New nuclear would probably be a little cheaper than new coal.

But, if you put a price on carbon, nuclear still has to compete with wind and solar, and nuclear can't.  Some paid off nuclear plants are cheap to operate but they won't last forever.  At refurbishing or replacement time it's over for those plants. 


zizek

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #464 on: July 16, 2017, 06:43:29 PM »
Google keeps on pulling life cycle GHG numbers that put nuclear on par with wind and solar, of course, most of these numbers are from industry so who knows.

Windmill and solar have two big issues that shouldn't be set aside, and I don't think are taken into account when discussing life cycle costs.  First, and the most obvious, what will emissions look like when we move completely from fossil fuels and rely on energy storage?  Second, and an issue that should be taken more seriously, how will volatile and unpredictable weather from a warming world affect wind and solar.

Wind mills and solar panels are at the mercy of the climate change. Which, I feel, isn't the best thing to rely on considering our current state.  Extreme weathers can damage turbines and solar panels, either completely destroying them or increasing maintenance costs. Additionally, changing weather patterns could negatively (and positively) impact the efficiency of units.

It doesn't really matter at this point. Capital has pretty much completely shifted from nuclear into wind and solar. Hopefully we're making the right bet...

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #465 on: July 16, 2017, 07:24:42 PM »
First, and the most obvious, what will emissions look like when we move completely from fossil fuels and rely on energy storage?

The lifetime carbon footprint for solar and wind will be much smaller than it is today.  And it's really small already.  Most of the carbon emissions from the wind and solar industry come from the grid use of fossil fuels and transportation's almost total use of FF.  As we move to electricity powered transportation and a 100% RE grid all that  carbon stays in the ground.

Second, and an issue that should be taken more seriously, how will volatile and unpredictable weather from a warming world affect wind and solar.

Studies have suggested that we should see little change in wind resources on a global level.  In some places winds may become weaker or stronger but that can be largely dealt with by changing turbine blade length/design. 

Solar panels will produce a little less electricity in hotter weather.  The amount of area needed for solar panels will likely be more than offset by increases in panel efficiency.

Something I'm observing here at the southern end of the PNW is that there seems to be less coastal fog in the summer.  I don't know if that is extending further north, but if so then solar is going to be more productive in this limited area. 

I stuck that in as an indication that things will vary, improve in some places, be degraded in others.  Overall things may not be heavily impacted.

BTW, offshore wind turbines are designed to withstand a Category 3 hurricane.  These things are not fragile.

Since this is the nuclear thread, we might want to think about impact to nuclear energy.  There's the obvious problem of raising sea levels and more frequent flooding.  That means we should expect increased outages from poorly sited reactors. 

And as temperatures rise cooling will become less efficient, lowering output.  Plus temperature required shutdowns will increase.

zizek

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #466 on: July 16, 2017, 08:31:42 PM »
First, and the most obvious, what will emissions look like when we move completely from fossil fuels and rely on energy storage?

The lifetime carbon footprint for solar and wind will be much smaller than it is today.  And it's really small already.  Most of the carbon emissions from the wind and solar industry come from the grid use of fossil fuels and transportation's almost total use of FF.  As we move to electricity powered transportation and a 100% RE grid all that  carbon stays in the ground.

Second, and an issue that should be taken more seriously, how will volatile and unpredictable weather from a warming world affect wind and solar.

Studies have suggested that we should see little change in wind resources on a global level.  In some places winds may become weaker or stronger but that can be largely dealt with by changing turbine blade length/design. 

Solar panels will produce a little less electricity in hotter weather.  The amount of area needed for solar panels will likely be more than offset by increases in panel efficiency.

Something I'm observing here at the southern end of the PNW is that there seems to be less coastal fog in the summer.  I don't know if that is extending further north, but if so then solar is going to be more productive in this limited area. 

I stuck that in as an indication that things will vary, improve in some places, be degraded in others.  Overall things may not be heavily impacted.

BTW, offshore wind turbines are designed to withstand a Category 3 hurricane.  These things are not fragile.

Since this is the nuclear thread, we might want to think about impact to nuclear energy.  There's the obvious problem of raising sea levels and more frequent flooding.  That means we should expect increased outages from poorly sited reactors. 

And as temperatures rise cooling will become less efficient, lowering output.  Plus temperature required shutdowns will increase.

Here is the IPCC report that discuss GHG emissions:
https://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg3/ipcc_wg3_ar5_annex-iii.pdf#page=5
nuclear mean: 12
wind onshore: 11
wind offshore: 12
concentrated solar panel: 27
coal: 820

Really, I'm not sure if there's any worth comparing GHG emissions between nuclear and other green energy sources. The emissions are so similar for all of them that it becomes trivial. It's probably more important to deliberate the practical components of renewable (and nuclear) energy sources.

Nuclear is tried tested and true. That's what makes it appealing. Renewable have a long way to go before they can effectively meet the our current demands. And trust me when I say this, I would much rather have wind and solar over nuclear. But I feel like we're running out of time. Projections that incorporate wind and solar as our main source of power forecast technologies and efficiencies that don't yet exist. That is fine and all, and the model should contain that. But what these models don't consider is what happens if climate change disrupts the highly fragile globalized economic system our current society exists in.

I dunno, I may be wrong. But I just feel that an energy source that depends so much on weather, geography, and R&D might not be the best path for us.  It seems to rely so much on stability, and I fear the near future will be anything but. 

wili

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #467 on: July 16, 2017, 09:18:54 PM »
"Nuclear is tried tested and true"

Except some of those 'tests' went horribly wrong...

..and more are sure to follow  :-\
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #468 on: July 16, 2017, 09:23:23 PM »
Compared to fossil fuels nuclear, wind and solar are all great when it comes to carbon footprint.  Wind and solar numbers decline as turbines and panels become more efficient.  And as the grid uses less FF. 

Nuclear is tried and tested.  But it's proven to be too expensive.  Were we to repower our grids with nuclear the additional cost of electricity would cripple economies.  Wind and solar make the cost of electricity cheaper.

"Projections that incorporate wind and solar as our main source of power forecast technologies and efficiencies that don't yet exist. "

No, I've read several 80% wind/solar to 100% wind/solar studies and none use "don't yet exist" technologies.  Most of the studies are out of date as soon as they are published because wind and solar efficiencies have already improved since the paper was written and costs have fallen.

I've never see a "mostly RE grid" study that uses technologies or efficiencies not already demonstrated.

" I just feel that an energy source that depends so much on weather, geography, and R&D might not be the best path for us."

Local weather patterns may change.  That could mean that in a few places we might have to change the blades on wind turbines or add more solar panels to the system.  In a few extreme conditions we might need to relocate the turbines or panels. 

Most likely we would never move turbines due to changes in wind speeds.  Those changes are not likely to be abrupt.  Worst case, we'd continue to use the current turbines but not replace them at that site when they reached the end of their useful life.  We'd install the replacements is a windier spot.

zizek

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #469 on: July 17, 2017, 12:56:25 AM »
I have a feeling that solar and wind, along with energy storage, are not economically feasible in many parts of the world. But maybe I'm wrong, and I hope I am.

wili

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #470 on: July 17, 2017, 01:05:54 AM »
"I have a feeling..."

Based on???


 :)
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #471 on: July 17, 2017, 01:29:18 AM »
I have a feeling that solar and wind, along with energy storage, are not economically feasible in many parts of the world. But maybe I'm wrong, and I hope I am.

Go to this page -

http://thesolutionsproject.org/why-clean-energy/

and explore the US and International maps.  That will show you the best (most economical) mix of renewables in each area at this point in time.  The mix will probably change as prices for technologies will drop at different rates.  But the maps show what could be done now.

numerobis

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #472 on: July 17, 2017, 01:45:40 AM »
zizek: I agree that the CO2 impact of nuclear versus wind/solar is hard to distinguish.

Nuclear is tried and tested, I agree.

The CANDU reactor is mostly safe but extremely expensive (filling up with D2O is about a third of the lifetime cost, a cost no other reactor faces).

The PWR reactors are prone to catastrophic failure. They take 5-10 years to build once permitted.

Third-generation plants are under construction and hitting giant cost overruns at the moment. An industry insider tells me it's in large part for dumb reasons of ego wars between nuclear and civil engineers. Regardless of fault, it's a fact that they're late and going over their already expensive bids. We don't currently know how long they take to build, since none has successfully been built yet.

Fourth-generation plants are on paper perfect and wonderful but in reality they don't exist any more now than they did 10-15 years ago when I was adjacent to that industry (I was working on scientific computing; they needed better simulations of pebble-bed reactors).

A grid that's nearly 100% nuclear (aka France, or for a while New Brunswick) has serious problems with load-following. You have to rely on a neighbour to take the excess load at night, or on storage, or else you have to shut down one of these fantastically expensive plants for a little while, reducing its capacity factor and making it even more expensive per kWh it generates over its life.

rboyd

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #473 on: July 25, 2017, 05:52:54 AM »
Nuclear Power Heats Up in Asia, Cools in the West

"Asia aggressively builds nuclear power plants as the West withdraws

Nuclear power is hot in China. The country is building 19 commercial reactors, including two of the largest ever assembled. Russia's state-owned engineering firm, Rosatom, is erecting 13 reactors in five countries. India is developing its own domestic supply chain. Meanwhile the U.S. is canceling reactors, leaving only four under construction. American maker Westinghouse, long the global front-runner, filed for bankruptcy in March. France, which for decades happily relied on atomic power, will turn to renewables to meet new electricity demand. Germany will shutter all its reactors by 2022."

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/nuclear-power-heats-up-in-asia-cools-in-the-west/

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #474 on: July 25, 2017, 07:01:02 AM »
There are ongoing discussions in both South Carolina and Georgia over whether to abandon the two Summer and two Vogtle reactors.  If finished both would have to sell their electricity at a price higher than current retail prices in those states.

Additionally, none of the new generation is needed.  Both states failed to recognize the oncoming efficiency movement.  The reactors were built assuming demand would continue to rise when, in fact, it has stabilized or even fallen.

South Carolina is probably in the worst shape.  Normally their grid would carry about 15% extra capacity to cover unscheduled plant outages.  If finished their reserve capacity would rise to about 45%. 

This leaves SC in a real dilemma.  Stop work and eat the loss.  Or finish the reactors which will cost several billion more dollars and then run them.  If run other, cheaper sources will have to be shut down.  This will drive the price of electricity even higher. 

Drive the price higher and expect more efficiency at the consumer level plus lots of consumer owned solar.  That would, of course, cause demand to fall which would require more of the less expensive generation to be shut and kick the cost of electricity up another notch.

This is the problem TVA ran into 20+ years ago when expected demand growth failed to materialize and they had to stop work on a new reactor when it was 80% completed.  (It may have been two reactors.)

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #475 on: July 25, 2017, 07:07:23 AM »
It's going to be interesting to see what happens with China's and India's nuclear programs over the next five or so years.  These programs were planned and gained momentum when wind and solar were expensive.  Now both countries have robust wind and solar programs.  Both are starting to work on offshore wind as the cost of offshore is rapidly dropping.

Will China and India continue to build reactors or will they invest their capital in wind and solar which will give them more affordable electricity?

Russia.  Who knows what "I want to be president for life" Putin will do.  If Russia loses its oil and natural gas income the Tzar may not have the capital to build much of anything.

longwalks1

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #476 on: July 25, 2017, 07:54:52 AM »
Well, not nuclear power per se, but it might have some in common with security from outside groups for nuclear reactors.  In Germany,

http://www.nukeresister.org/2017/07/18/activists-cut-fences-occupy-nuclear-weapons-bunker-in-protest-of-u-s-nukes-in-germany/

and for the first time in a 21-year-long series of protests against the deployment of U.S. B61 thermonuclear bombs there, climbed on top of one large bunker used for nuclear weapons. After cutting through two exterior fences and two more fences surrounding the large earth-covered bunkers, the five spent more than one hour unnoticed sitting on the bunker. No notice of the group was taken until after two of them climbed down to write “DISARM” on the bunker’s metal front door, setting off an alarm. Surrounded by vehicles and guards searching on foot with flashlights, the five eventually alerted guards to their presence by singing, causing the guards to look up. The internationals were eventually taken into custody more than two hours after entering the base.

Good folk, over a century combined of nonviolence in living and in Khan-Ghandi-Kingian nonviolence usage and tactics. 

gerontocrat

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #477 on: July 25, 2017, 02:40:46 PM »
I was reading Bob Wallace's post on White Elephant nuclear projects in the USA. Not to be outdone, we in the UK have Hinkley C (add unproven reactor design to the shambles)

AN EXTRACT FROM THE UK's DAILY TELEGRAPH
18 JULY 2017 • 8:41PM
Households could end up paying £50bn to support the new Hinkley Point C nuclear project in Somerset, according to government figures, more than eight times the 2013 estimate.

The latest forecasts have revealed that EDF’s bid to build the first new nuclear plant in a generation could cost energy bill payers £50bn over the life of the project, well above the £6bn bill estimated in 2013.

Consumers are on the hook for a far greater share of the project costs because the wholesale market price for electricity is falling steadily while nuclear power construction remains expensive and high risk.

Under an agreement between the Government and EDF Energy, ironed out in 2013, Hinkley is guaranteed to earn £92.50 for every megawatt-hour (MWh) of energy produced through a combination of wholesale market prices and a levy on consumer energy bills.

At the time Government said this would require top-up payments totaling £6bn via energy bills to meet the "strike price", but falling market prices have widened the forecast gap every year since then.

Two years ago the cost was estimated at £13bn before it spiralled to over £30bn under fresh analysis from the public spending watchdog last year.

etc etc etc

PS: Since that Article was written the UK Government announced that the National Grid would be moving to batteries to provide the necessary base load to back up solar , wind etc. And no-one has the balls to stop it happening.
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #478 on: July 25, 2017, 06:22:19 PM »
Households could end up paying £50bn to support the new Hinkley Point C nuclear project in Somerset, according to government figures, more than eight times the 2013 estimate.

How widely is this being discussed in the UK?  Is the general public aware and are they aware of the rapidly dropping costs of renewables?

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #479 on: July 25, 2017, 06:53:03 PM »
Turns out that in the US construction was started on 39 reactors and then they were later abandoned.  On average construction lasted for 7.4 years before someone threw in the towel.

Seeing how we have roughly 100 operating reactors that's a very high failure rate.  It was almost all due to costs soaring far higher than what the industry had claimed the reactors would cost.

Another 59 reactors were planned but construction was never started on them.


gerontocrat

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #480 on: July 25, 2017, 08:08:00 PM »
Households could end up paying £50bn to support the new Hinkley Point C nuclear project in Somerset, according to government figures, more than eight times the 2013 estimate.

How widely is this being discussed in the UK?  Is the general public aware and are they aware of the rapidly dropping costs of renewables?
One word answer : BREXIT

The UK public are otherwise engaged (and perhaps still believe their government knows what it is doing?).
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"

wili

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #481 on: July 25, 2017, 08:48:16 PM »
Bob, wonder, when they figure out the real cost of nuclear power per kwh, do they ever figure in the costs of these abandoned projects, or of evacuation costs and Fukushima and elsewhere?
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #482 on: July 25, 2017, 08:58:33 PM »
Bob, wonder, when they figure out the real cost of nuclear power per kwh, do they ever figure in the costs of these abandoned projects, or of evacuation costs and Fukushima and elsewhere?

Never.


Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #483 on: July 30, 2017, 11:25:10 PM »
Perhaps this is a best fit here.  It's an extremely interesting/scary read about how the Trump administration is dealing with this country's energy.  And nuclear weapons. 

(Both reside in the DOE which Rick Perry wants to close.)

http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/07/department-of-energy-risks-michael-lewis


Ken Feldman

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #484 on: July 31, 2017, 10:54:41 PM »
Turns out that in the US construction was started on 39 reactors and then they were later abandoned.  On average construction lasted for 7.4 years before someone threw in the towel.

Seeing how we have roughly 100 operating reactors that's a very high failure rate.  It was almost all due to costs soaring far higher than what the industry had claimed the reactors would cost.

Another 59 reactors were planned but construction was never started on them.

Add two more to the list.  The new AP1000 reactors at the VC Summer plant wont be completed.  The full story is here:  https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/sc-utilities-halt-work-on-new-nuclear-reactors-dimming-the-prospects-for-a-nuclear-energy-revival/2017/07/31/5c8ec4a0-7614-11e7-8f39-eeb7d3a2d304_story.html?utm_term=.25b244d95f44

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #485 on: July 31, 2017, 11:26:52 PM »
Now we'll be waiting to see if the two Vogtle reactors under construction are also abandoned.

Georgia, like SC, doesn't need their output.  And the GA reactors are also way over budget.


iamlsd

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #486 on: August 05, 2017, 03:07:11 PM »
I was actually searching for the maximum water temperature for cooling a coal fired power plant and came across this article which I thought was interesting - http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/current-and-future-generation/cooling-power-plants.aspx

As we warm up I've been wondering if we might hit limits on being able to cool fossil fuel (and nuclear) power plants but seems the steam cycle has a way to go yet. However efficiency goes down so economics (the mighty dollar always rules) comes into play plus environmental policies thankfully have some limits to stop everything in a local water source being boiled to death by the local power station.

tombond

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #487 on: November 09, 2017, 05:37:37 AM »
Emmanuel Macron the French President committed to a reduction of nuclear from 75% to 50% of electricity generation by 2025.

RTE, the EDF's electricity transmission system operator has advised that a too rapid decrease of the nuclear fleet would force it to keep the four French coal plants open and to build twenty new gas plants to balance intermittent renewables.

"I prefer realism and sincerity to the hoax, " Nicolas Hulot announced on Tuesday, November 7.  The reduction date to bring nuclear power to 50% has been deferred as it will be detriment to French climate goals.
 
Currently French electricity CO2 emissions at 25 million tonnes, are just 5% of total French emissions and the lowest of any G20 country and a demonstration model for the world to follow.

http://www.lemonde.fr/energies/article/2017/11/07/nicolas-hulot-reporte-l-objectif-de-baisse-du-nucleaire-de-50-d-ici-a-2025_5211451_1653054.html

Unfortunately for the climate Germany has not been sincere or realistic and has successfully maintained the hoax.  It has installed 100GW of intermittent renewables, closed half its nuclear capacity, installing 10GW of gas to balance renewables while maintaining its coal capacity at 49GW. 

https://www.energy-charts.de/power_inst.htm

As a result German CO2 emissions are unchanged at just over 300 million tonnes compared to French emissions of just 25 million tonnes.

See page 49 for German CO2 emissions.
https://www.agora-energiewende.de/fileadmin/Projekte/2017/Jahresauswertung_2016/Die_Energiewende_im_Stromsektor_2016_EN.pdf

Bob Wallace

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #488 on: November 09, 2017, 12:15:36 PM »
Germans are running some sort of hoax?

German citizens decided that they did not want to take the risk of a nuclear disaster so they sped up the closure of their remaining nuclear reactors.  That resulted in a 4% increase in CO2 emissions the following year.  After two more years emissions were back down lower than before the reactors were closed.

France is apparently subsidizing the cost of their reactors.  The French government has reported that operating expenses are higher than the wholesale cost of electricity so the only explanation I can think of is that the government is eating the difference.

That France is willing to continue to subsidize nuclear in order to close coal is good for climate change.

France, of course, sets no example of how to lower carbon levels.  France built their nuclear fleet when their energy supply was threatened by OPEC.  At the time the cost of wind and solar was very much higher, too high to consider.  Since then the price of renewables has plummeted and the price of nuclear has risen leaving nuclear the most expensive way to generate electricity.

Shared Humanity

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #489 on: November 09, 2017, 06:44:30 PM »
Here is table of electricity generation by state and the type of plant.

https://www.nei.org/Knowledge-Center/Nuclear-Statistics/US-Nuclear-Power-Plants/State-Electricity-Generation-Fuel-Shares

Only 2 states, New Hampshire and South Carolina, rely more on nuclear power generation than Illinois and Illinois consumer electricity rates are ridiculously high. Because of this, Illinois also has the dubious distinction of storing more high level radiation nuclear waste than any state in the U.S.

https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2013/07/27/how-much-nuclear-waste-does-your-state-hold.aspx

And its Morris Illinois facility is huge.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morris_Operation
« Last Edit: November 09, 2017, 06:57:12 PM by Shared Humanity »

Mathiasdm

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #490 on: November 16, 2017, 07:42:41 AM »
Belgium urgently has too choose between gas or nuclear power as transition fuels towards renewable energy.

Currently, the nuclear plants are all scheduled to close in 2025. We would have to build 9 gas plants (0 are planned right now) in the next 8 years. However, since the existing plants are cheap (to be more precise: the nuclear plants were paid by the government long ago and now simply need to be maintained), too little people are interested in investing in new power plants.

The three options our grid maintainer gives are:

  • Install 9 new gas power plants. This requires immediate action (not something our government is very good at -- we have 4 energy ministers, by the way).
  • A second scenario keeps a few of our nuclear reactors open, which would require building less gas power plants.
  • A third scenario assumes mass investments in renewable power. This would still require building gas power plants (but less), and would apparently cost a lot.

I'm hoping for a scenario where we go for as much renewable power as possible. Unfortunately, choosing between gas or nuclear is like choosing between bubonic plague or cholera (Dutch proverb).

Links in Dutch (will probably work relatively well using Google Translate):


I will try to do my bit to improve the share of renewable energy. Our new house will have a heat pump next year. Solar panels and a battery to reduce our load on the grid will follow eventually :-)
« Last Edit: November 16, 2017, 07:50:16 AM by Mathiasdm »

DrTskoul

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Re: Nuclear Powerful
« Reply #491 on: November 16, 2017, 08:26:31 AM »
Or wait and import from the neighbours.....I wonder where they are going to find all the electricity needed for those electric cars....
“You can know the name of a bird in all the languages of the world, but when you're finished, you'll know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird... So let's look at the bird and see what it's doing -- that's what counts.”
― Richard P. Feynman

numerobis

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #492 on: November 16, 2017, 01:07:19 PM »
This is the perfect time to get all your neighbors together to make local changes that reduce the need for all those new central plants. You put on solar panels, great! But then get your neighbors to do it too, and get the community to invest in community-scale systems that reduce your dependence as well.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Nuclear Powerful
« Reply #493 on: November 16, 2017, 02:21:18 PM »
Or wait and import from the neighbours.....I wonder where they are going to find all the electricity needed for those electric cars....

Some of it will come from the electricity that is no longer needed to refine gasoline. ;)
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Mathiasdm

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #494 on: November 16, 2017, 04:45:20 PM »
Just FYI, I found the actual study (in English) that was made by the grid maintainer, it's very interesting to read and really makes you think about how to solve the problems for the entire grid: http://www.elia.be/~/media/files/Elia/About-Elia/Studies/20171114_ELIA_4584_AdequacyScenario.pdf

It highlights things like:

  • Dunkelflaute: periods during the winter when there is little wind and little sun
  • The importance of shifting demand and using storage with batteries, heat pumps and electrical vehicles. It also points out that these cannot solve the 'Dunkelflaute' problem. Technologies like power-to-gas might handle that by 2040 though.
  • Page 113 lists quantitative results, including the CO2 reduction expected in the EU22
« Last Edit: November 16, 2017, 04:56:02 PM by Mathiasdm »

sidd

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #495 on: December 13, 2017, 12:46:10 AM »
This is quite shocking. The bankruptcy of Westinghouse and Toshiba reveals a sordid nuclear plant construction process:

They were warned in 2011:

" ... a confidential report that warned six years ago that Westinghouse Electric wasn't prepared to build four new nuclear reactors in Georgia and South Carolina. "

https://www.postandcourier.com/business/post-and-courier-releases-internal-westinghouse-report-detailing-early-faults/article_a2a49e1a-dc26-11e7-bb3c-8b253f205c42.html

https://www.postandcourier.com/business/internal-westinghouse-document-warned-south-carolina-nuclear-reactor-construction-was/article_9d9c08f4-a3a5-11e7-9b82-e749ee661e95.html

Then they didnt use professional engineers:

" ...  construction drawings for the unfinished reactors were used at V.C. Summer without having them vetted and approved by professional engineers."

They slithered through a loophole:

"The state Board of Registration for Professional Engineers doesn't have the legal authority to inspect engineering worksites, and the NRC does not get into that level of detail in its review."

Understatement of the year:

"But you can’t build something as complicated as a nuclear reactor without drawings in hand."

"Westinghouse’s deputy general counsel drafted a 13-page legal opinion on May 7, 2012, arguing the engineering laws in South Carolina, Georgia and any other state where an AP1000 reactor was built didn't apply. They reasoned their federal licenses superseded state requirements."

"The need for professional engineers to approve all of the reactor designs was a waste of time and money, Westinghouse's attorneys said. "

" ... nearly every drawing was revised on site."

"The drawings, the audit found, were "often not constructible."  "

"Delays, incorrect parts, thousands of engineering changes, and billions of dollars in wasted money can be traced back to faulty drawings produced by unlicensed people ... "

" “It was a race to the bottom," said one engineer. "

https://www.postandcourier.com/business/stamped-for-failure-westinghouse-and-scana-used-unlicensed-workers-to/article_3ea2046a-9d39-11e7-a186-cb396c86b8b9.html

sidd






TerryM

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #496 on: December 13, 2017, 01:37:26 AM »
sidd


Not bothering to use professional drawings when building nuclear reactors is unbelievable. These are the same people that Ukraine is depending on to design and build fuel rods for the Soviet built reactors that power almost all of their country.


Don't be terribly surprised when Chernobyl II occurs.


BTW I don't think Toshiba has bit the dust just yet, but it may be quite a while before another Japanese consortium bids on an underpriced American household name.


Terry

numerobis

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #497 on: December 13, 2017, 03:07:42 AM »
Westinghouse is not the same people that anyone anywhere is depending on, given they're bust. They've laid off just about everyone related to civilian reactors as far as I know.

A friend of mine got out a few months beforehand, after complaining to me for years about astounding incompetence and hinting at the things that are coming out now. It was an open secret.


tombond

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Re: Nuclear Power
« Reply #499 on: December 18, 2017, 11:08:10 AM »
French President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday he would not follow Germany's example by phasing out nuclear energy in France because his priority was to cut carbon emissions and shut down polluting coal-fired production.

"Nuclear is not bad for carbon emissions, it's even the most carbon-free way to produce electricity with renewables," Macron said.

http://econews.com.au/56306/macron-says-nuclear-renewables-to-help-french-co2-reduction-goals/

It gives me some hope for the future that some world leaders are starting to use scientific evidence and data to drive CO2 emission reduction decision making.   

France has had one of the lowest electricity grid emissions for 30 years thanks to nuclear power.   Norway, Sweden and France all use nuclear or hydro or both to head the low carbon emissions league table. 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/11/15/carbon-tax-thrusts-britain-towards-top-low-carbon-energy-league/

Any time this electricity emissions map is accessed it consistently shows Norway, Sweden and France as green along with the State of Ontario in Canada showing low electricity emissions.

https://www.electricitymap.org/?wind=false&solar=false&page=map

 http://live.gridwatch.ca/home-page.html