United Kingdom

Meetings on nuclear debate

Monday, February 25, 2008

The public will get the chance to hear the outline proposals for new nuclear power stations at Sizewell and Bradwell next month.

British Energy is arranging public meetings “to keep people informed on the decision-making process and to hear views on the impact this may have on the area”.

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Locals struggling at Sellafield

Monday, February 25, 2008

The complex job of cleaning up Britain’s dirtiest nuclear site is drawing some of the world’s biggest engineering companies to the poorest corner of north-west England, but local companies are wondering how they will fare in the fight for lucrative contracts.

Sellafield, in Cumbria, is the biggest prize currently available in nuclear decommissioning, with decades of work to undo the problems caused by 50 years of atomic research.

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Companies to foot nuclear clean-up bill

Friday, February 22, 2008

Companies building nuclear reactors in the UK will have to meet the full cost of their future closure and clean-up, setting money aside from day one, the government will say on Friday.

Following on from last month’s white paper on nuclear power, the government will on Friday set out the draft framework for how the decommissioning of new nuclear reactors would be paid for.

Several companies, including British Energy, EDF, Eon, RWE and Centrica, are looking at building reactors but have said they want more certainty on a range of issues before they are ready to invest, including decommissioning costs and the disposal of radioactive waste.

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Government to examine nuclear competition issue

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Government is concerned that a lack of competition in the UK nuclear industry threatens to distort decision-making in the race to build a new generation of nuclear power plants.

In an interview with The Times, Malcolm Wicks, the Energy Minister, said the Government would look critically at British Energy’s ownership of eight of the most attractive UK sites for new reactors. “We want to see proper competition here,” he said. “We don’t want to see some sort of cagey deal between one company and another company . . . We have got to facilitate proper competition.”

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British Energy's Torness reactor closure unplanned

Thursday, February 21, 2008

LONDON, Feb 21 (Reuters) - British Energy's Torness-2 nuclear power reactor stopped just after midnight on Thursday and the shutdown was unplanned, a spokeswoman for the company said.

"We are working on the restart plan," she said on Thursday. "But we will do some additional maintenance work while the unit is off."

She would not say what had caused the 625-MW reactor, one of two at the power plant in Scotland, to stop. (Reporting by Daniel Fineren)

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Nuclear plant scraps £1m workers' travel subsidy

Monday, February 18, 2008

Sellafield is to scrap the £1m plus it spends every year subsidising workers' travel to and from the site.
The money is paid directly to Stagecoach and Northern Rail.

The companies, in turn, provide cheaper fares for workers but Sellafield Ltd has confirmed that bosses are looking to end the subsidy by April 2010.

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Nuclear clean-up plant gets go-ahead

Friday, February 15, 2008

A CONTROVERSIAL £6 million nuclear decontamination plant planned for Workington can go ahead.

Studsvik UK was granted a nuclear site licence by the Health and Safety Executive on Wednesday.

The plant will decontaminate low-level radioactive metal from the nuclear industry and sell it on to be reused.

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Against The Grain: It's hard to see why nuclear is the favoured route'

Friday, February 15, 2008

Dr Paul Dorfman is Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust Research Fellow and Senior Research Fellow at Warwick University. He argues that government policy on nuclear power is wrong.

The two core arguments made by the nuclear industry are security of supply and global warming. Let's take global warming first. If we were to rebuild our entire nuclear stock we would mitigate only 4 per cent of our CO2 emissions, so how can it be about global warming? If you're serious about CO2, then get serious about transport, or other forms of energy.

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UK nuclear power

Friday, February 15, 2008

Recent rumours of a takeover or break-up of British Energy are exaggerated.

The UK nuclear generator, with an enterprise value of £5bn, is still in effect controlled by the government. In return for taking on the long-term liabilities associated with decommissioning nuclear plants, the state has a call on BE's net cash flows - 65 per cent from 2004 to 2007, and now 35 per cent. It can convert this right into equity at any point and could potentially block unwanted interest. Whether it would, though, is a moot point. While some potential suitors - Russia's Gazprom, for example - would be politically less appealing than others, the UK government appears to feel sanguine about foreign ownership even of such strategic assets.

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British Energy in talks on reactors

Thursday, February 14, 2008

British Energy remains in talks with 10 potential partners for the construction of nuclear reactors and hopes to sign at least one deal in the next few months.

The nuclear energy group reported third-quarter results on Wednesday, which were hit by the unplanned closure of its Hartelpool and Heysham reactors.

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