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Japan shuts down last Nuke Plant.

Discussion in 'Home Power and Microgeneration' started by Vaughn, May 5, 2012.

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  1. Vaughn

    Vaughn Guest

    Now we see the second half of the Fukushima environmental disaster. This
    half will likely cause worse, longer lasting, and much wider damage than
    the first half, but it won't make headlines. Japan has overreacted by
    abandoning nuclear power. Since they haven't had the time to make up
    the gap with alternative energy sources, it's safe to say the they are
    doing it with fossil plants, and like China, doing so with little or no
    regard to emissions.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/may/05/japan-shuts-down-last-nuclear-reactor

    Vaughn
     
  2. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    After what nuclear power plants did to Japan, I'd hardly say they have
    "overreacted".
     
  3. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    You seem to be forgetting something.
     
  4. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    from
    http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012...shed-because-it-is-good-for-making-bombs.html

    Forbes points out:

    Nuclear power is no longer an economically viable source of new energy in the
    United States, the freshly-retired CEO of Exelon, America's largest producer of
    nuclear power [who also served on the president's Blue Ribbon Commission on
    America's Nuclear Future], said in Chicago Thursday.

    And it won't become economically viable, he said, for the forseeable future.

    ***

    "I'm the nuclear guy," Rowe said. "And you won't get better results with
    nuclear. It just isn't economic, and it's not economic within a foreseeable time
    frame."

    U.S. News and World Report notes:

    After the Fukushima power plant disaster in Japan last year, the rising costs
    of nuclear energy could deliver a knockout punch to its future use in the United
    States, according to a researcher at the Vermont Law School Institute for Energy
    and the Environment.

    "From my point of view, the fundamental nature of [nuclear] technology
    suggests that the future will be as clouded as the past," says Mark Cooper, the
    author of the report. New safety regulations enacted or being considered by the
    U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission would push the cost of nuclear energy too
    high to be economically competitive.

    The disaster insurance for nuclear power plants in the United States is
    currently underwritten by the federal government, Cooper says. Without that
    safeguard, "nuclear power is neither affordable nor worth the risk. If the
    owners and operators of nuclear reactors had to face the full liability of a
    Fukushima-style nuclear accident or go head-to-head with alternatives in a truly
    competitive marketplace, unfettered by subsidies, no one would have built a
    nuclear reactor in the past, no one would build one today, and anyone who owns a
    reactor would exit the nuclear business as quickly as possible."

    Alternet reports:

    An authoritative study by the investment bank Lazard Ltd. found that wind beat
    nuclear and that nuclear essentially tied with solar. But wind and solar, being
    simple and safe, are coming on line faster. Another advantage wind and solar
    have is that capacity can be added bit by bit; a wind farm can have more or less
    turbines without scuttling the whole project. As economies of scale are created
    within the alternative energy supply chains and the construction process becomes
    more efficient, prices continue to drop. Meanwhile, the cost of stalled nukes
    moves upward.

    AP noted last year:

    Nuclear power is a viable source for cheap energy only if it goes uninsured.

    ***

    Governments that use nuclear energy are torn between the benefit of low-cost
    electricity and the risk of a nuclear catastrophe, which could total trillions
    of dollars and even bankrupt a country.

    The bottom line is that it's a gamble: Governments are hoping to dodge a
    one-off disaster while they accumulate small gains over the long-term.

    The cost of a worst-case nuclear accident at a plant in Germany, for example,
    has been estimated to total as much as ?7.6 trillion ($11 trillion), while the
    mandatory reactor insurance is only ?2.5 billion.

    "The ?2.5 billion will be just enough to buy the stamps for the letters of
    condolence," said Olav Hohmeyer, an economist at the University of Flensburg who
    is also a member of the German government's environmental advisory body.

    The situation in the U.S., Japan, China, France and other countries is
    similar.

    ***

    "Around the globe, nuclear risks - be it damages to power plants or the
    liability risks resulting from radiation accidents - are covered by the state.
    The private insurance industry is barely liable," said Torsten Jeworrek, a board
    member at Munich Re, one of the world's biggest reinsurance companies.

    ***

    In financial terms, nuclear incidents can be so devastating that the cost of
    full insurance would be so high as to make nuclear energy more expensive than
    fossil fuels.

    ***

    Ultimately, the decision to keep insurance on nuclear plants to a minimum is a
    way of supporting the industry.

    "Capping the insurance was a clear decision to provide a non-negligible
    subsidy to the technology," Klaus Toepfer, a former German environment minister
    and longtime head of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), said.

    See this and this.

    This is an ongoing battle, not ancient history. As Harvey Wasserman reports:

    The only two US reactor projects now technically under construction are on the
    brink of death for financial reasons.

    If they go under, there will almost certainly be no new reactors built here.

    ***

    Georgia's double-reactor Vogtle project has been sold on the basis of federal
    loan guarantees. Last year President Obama promised the Southern Company, parent
    to Georgia Power, $8.33 billion in financing from an $18.5 billion fund that had
    been established at the Department of Energy by George W. Bush. Until last week
    most industry observers had assumed the guarantees were a done deal. But the
    Nuclear Energy Institute, an industry trade group, has publicly complained that
    the Office of Management and Budget may be requiring terms that are unacceptable
    to the builders.

    ***

    The climate for loan guarantees has changed since this one was promised. The
    $535 million collapse of Solyndra prompted a rash of angry Congressional
    hearings and cast a long shadow over the whole range of loan guarantees for
    energy projects. Though the Vogtle deal comes from a separate fund, skepticism
    over stalled negotiations is rising.

    So is resistance among Georgia ratepayers. To fund the new Vogtle reactors,
    Southern is forcing "construction work in progress" rate hikes that require
    consumers to pay for the new nukes as they're being built. Southern is free of
    liability, even if the reactors are not completed. Thus it behooves the company
    to build them essentially forever, collecting payment whether they open or not.

    All that would collapse should the loan guarantee package fail.
     
  5. Vaughn

    Vaughn Guest

    All true. Also, the economic argument is beside the point because Japan
    already had the nuke plants, so the construction costs were all sunk.
    Last I heard, fuel costs for an existing nuke plant are cheap compared
    to alternatives.

    Vaughn
     
  6. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    Maybe thay've already lost enough land and money to failed nukes.
     
  7. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    And it isn't anywhere close to over. It may still get much worse.
     
  8. Mho

    Mho Guest

    Yeah, cheap nuclear power generation. Can-du coming and better planning.
     
  9. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    Privatise the profits, socialize the losses (limits of liability via
    Price-Anderson). Classical Republicon practice here in the US.
     
  10. Vaughn

    Vaughn Guest

    I am in favor of maximum utilization of all the "alternatives" you
    mention. I even have a modest solar power system myself! But none of
    your "alternatives" can presently displace much base power capacity.
    Delude yourself all you wish, but the truth is the only thing we have
    that can replace nuclear power plants is fossil fuel plants. The
    anti-nukes NEVER will honestly discuss the human-killing environmental
    damage associated with replacing clean nuclear power with fossil.

    Simple truth: With fossil power, the waste disposal problem remains
    unsolved. The "waste" is dumped directly into our atmosphere where we
    all breath it. With global warming, the health problems from power
    plant air pollution may be the LEAST of our problems!

    Vaughn
     
  11. Curbie

    Curbie Guest

    The total annual energy used by the US, 40.1% goes to producing
    electric power, and of that, a whopping 9% is produced by renewables,
    and of that, less than half is produced by a renewable other than
    hydro, but on the other hand, 21% is produced by nuclear.

    So, not unless people are advocating turning the clock back to the
    1890's, these rosy solutions need to get real, before people figure
    out how much world population growth depended on cheap energy, and the
    current world's population depends on cheap energy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_in_the_United_States

    Curbie
     
  12. Bob F

    Bob F Guest

    Early radioactive release estimates in Japan were way low.

    http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/BRE84N0W3/US-NUCLEAR-JAPAN/
     
  13. T. Keating

    T. Keating Guest

    old data... from 2008...el-dumbo...

    http://205.254.135.7/energy_in_brief/renewable_electricity.cfm
    Electric power monthly May 16, 2012

    Sources of Electricity generation, 2011 (EIA)
    Renewable 13%
    Nuclear 19%
    Natural Gas 25%
    Coal 42%

    For the 1st tow months of 2012, January, Febuary verses same periond
    2011.

    Coal based electrical generation dropped by 21%,

    Nuclear power output dropped another 1%,
    (Likely to stay that way for a long time, 2200 MWe San Onofre is
    down for the count, major problems with new steam generator design,
    license to operate suspended.)

    Non-hydro, renewable increased by 20%,
    NG generation increased by 30%.


    ===snip the rest of the rant===.
     
  14. T. Keating

    T. Keating Guest

    old data... from 2008...el-dumbo...

    http://205.254.135.7/energy_in_brief/renewable_electricity.cfm
    Electric power monthly May 16, 2012

    Sources of Electricity generation, 2011 (EIA)
    Renewable 13%
    Nuclear 19%
    Natural Gas 25%
    Coal 42%

    For the 1st two months of 2012, January, Febuary verses same periond
    2011.

    Coal based electrical generation dropped by 21%,

    Nuclear power output dropped another 1%,
    (Likely to stay that way for a long time, 2200 MWe San Onofre is
    down for the count, major problems with new steam generator design,
    license to operate suspended.)

    Non-hydro, renewable increased by 20%,
    NG generation increased by 30%.


    ===snip the rest of the rant===.
     
  15. T. Keating

    T. Keating Guest

    old data... from 2008...el-dumbo...

    http://205.254.135.7/energy_in_brief/renewable_electricity.cfm
    Electric power monthly May 16, 2012

    Sources of Electricity generation, 2011 (EIA)
    Renewable 13%
    Nuclear 19%
    Natural Gas 25%
    Coal 42%

    For the 1st two months of 2012, January, February verses same period
    2011.

    Coal based electrical generation dropped by 21%,

    Nuclear power output dropped another 1%,
    (Likely to stay that way for a long time, 2200 MWe San Onofre is
    down for the count, major problems with new steam generator design,
    license to operate suspended.)

    Non-hydro, renewable increased by 20%,
    NG generation increased by 30%.


    ===snip the rest of the rant===.
     
  16. Curbie

    Curbie Guest

    So, what's your point genius, don't you even read the rest of the
    random web-sites you post? "Generation from nonhydropower renewables
    has more than doubled since 1990"
    http://205.254.135.7/energy_in_brief/renewable_electricity.cfm
    The data I posted is older, but unlike the random web-sites you
    posted, is a fairly complete dataset.

    It took 21 years for non-hydropower renewables to produce the about
    same power as hydropower (all built before the 1970's) for a combined
    total of ~350 million MW.

    So, how many centuries at this whopping power increase take for
    non-hydro renewable replace nuclear?

    Like I said Einstein, get real, this is too serious a problem for
    silly opinions.

    Curbie
     
  17. Neon John

    Neon John Guest

    I wonder if they'll report the solar output next winter when the weeks
    of gloomy overcast weather that Germany experiences has set in?

    John
    John DeArmond
    http://www.neon-john.com
    http://www.fluxeon.com
    Tellico Plains, Occupied TN
    See website for email address
     
  18. T. Keating

    T. Keating Guest

    Actually the (US government) EIA web site is more up to date, and
    completer. for example..

    http://205.254.135.7/electricity/monthly/
    "Electric Power Monthly"

    Plenty of stats if you look for them..
    so what..
    10 to 15 years.. If we don't **** it up..

    A huge part of the problem has been lack of consistent government
    policy torwards renewables. T
    One of the biggest problem is that we subsidize Fossil fuels, and
    Nuclear energy wayyy too much.
     
  19. Curbie

    Curbie Guest

    Agreed, the EIA web-site is more complete than either your random
    web-site or my wiki, but you called me grade-school names for posting
    older data more complete data, go figure.
    So, how many centuries at this whopping power increase will it take
    for non-hydro renewables to replace nuclear?

    So we can replace nuclear with the whopping 21 year power increase in
    non-hydro renewables in 10 to 15 years, absolute non-sense, get real
    and show me your math.
    That was Morris's point and I agree, but energy policy has to be
    founded on sound facts, not silly opinions.
    This biggest problem is trying to solve a serious problem this huge,
    with silly opinions.

    Curbie
     
  20. Per Neon John:
    I cannot cite, but I recall reading about a (German?) project in
    one of the Mideast countries (as in desert, sunshine most
    days...) that was going to ship solar-generated electricity to
    Europe.
     
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