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*** Fukushima *** and other nuclear-----updates and links

 
Anonymous Coward
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02/12/2014 08:11 AM
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"Nuclear Hotseat #138: USS Reagan Sailors v. TEPCO Lawsuit Update w/Attny Charles Bonner " 11th feb

[link to www.nuclearhotseat.com]

Audio interview... I not heard it all but thought I'd post it FYI and whilst can!
rp : )
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02/12/2014 03:58 PM
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NRA declares Ohi nuclear plant fault inactive

Japanese nuclear regulators have concluded that a geologic fault beneath the Ohi nuclear plant in central Japan is unlikely to move.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority on Wednesday approved a final report on the F-6 fault under the plant in Fukui Prefecture.

The report is based on inspections that began in November 2012. It says the F-6 is not an active fault and is not likely to move along with the active fault that is next to it.
[link to www3.nhk.or.jp]
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02/12/2014 03:59 PM
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Hokkaido city filing suit to stop construction of nuclear plant in Aomori

HAKODATE, Hokkaido--The Hakodate municipal government will file a lawsuit demanding a halt to construction of a nuclear power plant across the Tsugaru Strait, arguing that an accident there could have catastrophic consequences for the city.

The lawsuit against the central government and the electric power company building the nuclear plant in Oma, Aomori Prefecture, on the northern tip of Japan’s main island of Honshu, will be filed with the Tokyo District Court as early as March.

It will be the first lawsuit by a local government seeking the suspension of nuclear power plant construction.
[link to ajw.asahi.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/12/2014 03:59 PM
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Cracks found in floor near Fukushima radioactive water tanks

Two cracks were discovered in a concrete floor near radioactive water storage tanks on the grounds of the stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, the plant operator said Feb. 11.

Officials with Tokyo Electric Power Co. said some of the contaminated water from the melting snow blanketing the area may have seeped into the ground through the cracks.
[link to ajw.asahi.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/12/2014 04:00 PM
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No nuclear powers to participate in confab on humanitarian impact

The United States, Russia and the three other countries allowed to have nuclear weapons under the existing nonproliferation regime are expected to skip an international conference on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons, an envoy of host Mexico said Wednesday, citing their failure to register delegates for the event.
[link to english.kyodonews.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/12/2014 04:30 PM
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Nuclear Waste Solution Seen in Desert Salt Beds

CARLSBAD, N.M. — Half a mile beneath the desert surface, in thick salt beds left behind by seas that dried up hundreds of millions of years ago, the Department of Energy is carving out rooms as long as football fields and cramming them floor to ceiling with barrels and boxes of nuclear waste.

The salt beds, which have the consistency of crumbly rock so far down in the earth, are what the federal government sees as a natural sealant for the radioactive material left over from making nuclear weapons.

The process is deceptively simple: Plutonium waste from Los Alamos National Laboratory and a variety of defense projects is packed into holes bored into the walls of rooms carved from salt. At a rate of six inches a year, the salt closes in on the waste and encapsulates it for what engineers say will be millions of years.

“It’s eternity,” said Dirk Roberson, a guide for the frequent tours the Energy Department gives to visitors to the salt mine, who leave with a souvenir plastic bag filled with chunks of salt pressed into rocklike form.

The complications of the present intruded last week, however, when a truck hauling salt in the mine caught fire. Smoke forced an evacuation of workers and a shutdown of waste burial operations, which officials said was temporary. They said the fire did not affect the radioactive waste, which is stored at the other end of the mine.

Despite the setback, the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, WIPP for short, is drawing new attention here in the New Mexico desert. At a time when the effort to find a place for highly radioactive civilian and military wastes is at a near-standstill, officials say the site might be a solution. It is of particular interest since the demise of the plan for Yucca Mountain, a volcanic ridge 100 miles from Las Vegas chosen by Congress for the storage of nuclear waste from power reactors and weapons, but adamantly opposed by the state of Nevada.

The material buried at the plant, which began accepting waste in 1999, is limited by law to plutonium waste from making weapons, which is exceptionally long-lived but not highly radioactive. The waste from spent nuclear fuel, which is far more radioactive in its first few centuries, is not permitted. But experts say that proper testing and analysis might show that the salt beds at WIPP are a good home for the radioactive waste that was once meant for Yucca.
[link to www.nucpros.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 02:22 PM
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Here we go...

Record cesium level in Fukushima plant groundwater

The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi plant says water samples taken from a newly-dug well contained the highest levels of radioactive cesium detected so far in groundwater at the site.

Tokyo Electric Power Company says the record levels suggest that the leakage point could be near the well.

The utility on Thursday said it had detected 54,000 becquerels per liter of cesium 137 and 22,000 becquerels per liter of cesium 134 in water samples.

The samples were taken on Wednesday from a new observation well located 50 meters from the ocean near the Number 2 reactor.

The level of cesium 137 is 600 times the government standard for radioactive wastewater that can be released into the sea.

It is more than 30,000 times the level of cesium 137 found in water samples taken from another observation well to the north last week.

[link to www3.nhk.or.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 02:27 PM
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Nuclear regulator raps TEPCO over Fukushima radiation readings

TOKYO — Japan’s nuclear regulator has criticized the operator of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant for incorrectly measuring radiation levels in contaminated groundwater at the site.

Almost three years since the reactor meltdowns at the plant, Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) still lacks basic understanding of measuring and handling radiation, Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) Chairman Shunichi Tanaka said on Wednesday. The utility has been widely criticized for an inept response to the March 2011 disaster.
[link to www.japantoday.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 02:37 PM
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The Ketchup Man has spoken...

Kerry says N. Korea will not be accepted as nuclear state

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated Friday amid a visit to South Korea that the United States will not accept North Korea as a nuclear state and called for the North's "verifiable denuclearization."

"Let me be clear, the United States will not accept North Korea as a nuclear state," Kerry said at a joint news conference after talks with South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung Se.

He called on North Korea to take "meaningful actions" to prove it is really committed to denuclearization.
[link to english.kyodonews.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 02:44 PM
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Heartbreaking... poor kids...

Fukushima dental group to study baby teeth for radiation exposure

FUKUSHIMA--The prefectural dental association has started a five-year study to measure radiation levels in baby teeth to better determine the health effects of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.

Radiation tends to collect in baby teeth as they develop and does not metabolize, giving researchers the opportunity to take accurate measurements of radiation exposure when the child was younger.

Officials of the Fukushima Prefecture Dental Association said the project, supported by the Environment Ministry, will be the first in Japan to use teeth to analyze radiation exposure.

The dental association will ask parents to provide the baby teeth of their children who were living in Fukushima Prefecture when the meltdowns occurred at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in March 2011.

The association hopes to collect 4,000 teeth a year to measure concentrations of radioactive strontium and cesium.
[link to ajw.asahi.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 02:50 PM
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Goldman Sachs selling Iran’s one-time uranium supplier

US bank Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) and Deutsche Bank (NYSE:DB) are attempting to get out of trading supplies of raw uranium, known as yellowcake, a business few knew they were in.

According to Reuters, these financial institutions have stockpiled more nuclear fuel ingredient than the total amount held by Iran, and enough to run China's nuclear plants for a year.

Both global investment banks entered the uranium market in 2009, when tightening supplies threatened to send prices soaring. The plan was to handle almost a third of all uranium trades in the spot market. Instead, they are adding the division to the list of commodities units up for sale.

The move comes as other US banks, including JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and Morgan Stanley, are in the midst of waving their physical commodity trading good-bye.
[link to www.mining.com]
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Power struggle over EU nuclear safety

National regulators should remain responsible for nuclear safety in the European Union (EU), the nuclear industry has argued. The European Commission has proposed to increase its powers in a new safety directive.

European Nuclear Safety Regulators Group (ENSREG) chairman Gerald Hennenhöfer suggested that the commission does not have the experience to ensure and assess the safety of European nuclear power plants.
[link to www.world-nuclear-news.org]
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Anonymous Coward
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Very interesting...

Starpower: Boost in quest for nuclear fusion

Scientists on Wednesday announced an important advance in the long quest to harness nuclear fusion, a field that has sparked dreams of clean and limitless energy.

Fusion, the process that powers the Sun and other stars, entails forging the nuclei of atoms to release energy, as opposed to splitting them, which is fission -- the principle behind the atomic bomb and nuclear power.

Decades of work in fusion have run up against a giant hurdle -- the energy yield from the reaction has been dwarfed by the vast amounts of energy needed to trigger the process.

But, in lab experiments described by scientists in the United States, major progress has been made in overcoming this obstacle.

Reporting in the journal Nature, researchers said they were the first to tease more energy out of a fusion reaction than had been absorbed by the fuel used to spark it.

They fixed 192 laser beams onto a spot narrower than the width of a human hair to generate enough energy to compress a tiny fuel-containing capsule to a 35th of its original size.

Lasting less than a billionth of a second, the reaction put out the equivalent of the energy stored in two AA batteries (some 17,000 joules) in their latest experiment in November 2013.

Though "modest", according to the team, the output was higher than the estimated 9,000-12,000 joules of energy taken up by the fuel.

"This is closer than anyone has gotten before" to generating viable fusion energy, the study's chief author Omar Hurricane of the US government-run National Ignition Facility (NIF) in California said.
[link to www.spacedaily.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 03:07 PM
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(Now They Tell Us) Highly Radioactive Pieces Found in Naraha-Machi in June/July 2013 Came from #Fukushima I NPP, TEPCO Now Says

Specifically, four small pieces of debris found at the river mouth in Naraha-machi 15 kilometers from the plant may have come from Reactor 3.

The first piece of debris were found in June 2013, but TEPCO didn't mention the discovery until July after three more such high-radiation pieces were found. Even then, they published a half-baked result of the analysis, which was nothing more than the measurement of gamma radiation and beta radiation in microsieverts per hour. (See my post on July 2, 2013 for the first discovery.)

TEPCO disclosed the result of the analysis of the debris done by Japan Atomic Energy Agency (of Monju fame) during the regular February 12, 2014 press conference, and no major news outlet has reported the news so far. Only bloggers took note. (I suppose the mainstream media is busy educating themselves on the intricacies of the State Secrecy Protection Law, even though it hasn't gone into effect yet.)

According to TEPCO, the pieces of debris were not only highly contaminated with radioactive materials released from Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant but they actually, most likely came from the plant. The degree of contamination from radioactive materials found on the small pieces of debris is similar to that on the debris found around the Reactor 3 building.
[link to ex-skf.blogspot.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/13/2014 03:15 PM
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SUSQUEHANNA: SECONDARY CONTAINMENT BOUNDRY DOOR FOUND AJAR

On February 12, 2014 at 0711 EST, secondary containment (Unit 1 reactor building) boundary door-612 was found propped ajar with a secondary containment boundary sign stuck in the door jam, holding the door open. Upon discovery, the sign was removed from the door jam and the door was verified closed. A status walk down was performed and no other doors were found in this condition.

"Although secondary containment differential pressure was maintained throughout the time period that the door was open, the door serves as a secondary containment boundary and is required to be closed for secondary containment operability.

"Secondary containment alignment for removal of the 818 foot elevation (refuel floor) hatch removal had been performed at 0105 EST, February 12, 2014 and the last record of access to the area by security card reader occurred at 0044 EST by the operator performing the ventilation alignment. The potential duration of inoperability based on the available information is approximately 6.5 hours. Past operability evaluation is being performed.

"This event is being reported under 10 CFR 50.72(b)(3)(v) and per the guidance of NUREG 1022 Rev. 3 section 3.2.7 as a loss of a safety function. There is no redundant Susquehanna secondary containment system."

NRC Notified By: MARTIN LICHTNER
10 CFR Section: 50.72(b)(3)(v)(C) - POT UNCNTRL RAD REL
RX Type: [1] GE-4,[2] GE-4
[link to www.nucpros.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/14/2014 01:39 PM
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beyond sick. wtf the matter with ppl.

"Please share and post widely!
Mari Takenouchi, of Save Kids Japan is facing charges. Her "crime"?: advocating moving families out of the contaminated areas around the failed and leaking Fukushima nuclear site."

[link to secure.avaaz.org (secure)]
rp
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02/14/2014 06:22 PM
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Chubu Electric seeks to restart Hamaoka nuclear plant

Chubu Electric Power Co. applied Friday for a state safety assessment of the No. 4 reactor at the Hamaoka nuclear power plant in central Japan, which was forced to shut down in 2011 after operation of the complex was deemed too risky.
[link to english.kyodonews.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/14/2014 06:23 PM
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Fukushima should eye 'controlled discharges' in sea: IAEA

The UN nuclear watchdog on Thursday urged Japan to consider "controlled discharges" into the sea of contaminated water used to cool the crippled reactors at Fukushima.

The proposal was among recommendations outlined in a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency after its latest inspection of the worst nuclear accident in a generation.

"The IAEA team believes it is necessary to find a sustainable solution to the problem of managing contaminated water," the 72-page report said.

"This would require considering all options, including the possible resumption of controlled discharges to the sea."
[link to www.nuclearpowerdaily.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/14/2014 06:24 PM
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How Babcock plans to decommission UK nuclear submarines

An environmental impact report provided for public consultation about the decommissioning of seven UK nuclear submarines planned in Scotland has published detailed information about how the submarines' reactor pressure vessels are planned to be removed.

Rosyth Royal Dockyards Ltd. (RRDL), a subsdiary of Babcock International Group, has applied for consent to begin the dismantling project in January 2016. The UK nuclear regulator initiated a formal, three-month consultation on the project in late January (for which comments must be receved by 21 April 2014.)
[link to www.neimagazine.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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TEPCO finds falling debris damaged shield plug at Fukushima Daiichi Unit 3

This week TEPCO released new photos which show the progress made removing debris off of the top of the Unit 3 reactor building. These photos show some of the damage to the operating floor of the reactor building including locations where the floors have been damaged and the rebar is exposed.
[link to enformable.com]

Photos an video at link
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Anonymous Coward
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02/14/2014 06:25 PM
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Arkansas Nuclear One – Unit 2 LER: Fire and Explosion of the Unit Auxiliary Transformer resulted in an Automatic Reactor Scram and Initiation of the Emergency Feedwater System

On December 9, 2013, at approximately 0747 CST, Arkansas Nuclear One, Unit 2 (ANO-2), experienced an electrical fault on the Unit Auxiliary Transformer (2X-02) buses resulting in a fire and catastrophic failure of the transformer.

This caused an automatic reactor and main turbine trip, lockout of the Switchyard Auto Transformer, lockout of (ANO-2) Startup 3 Transformer (2X-03) and loss of power to Arkansas Nuclear One, Unit 1 (ANO-1) Startup 1 Transformer (X-03) The switchyard auto transformer supplies one of the two credited offsite sources supplying both Startup 3 Transformer (2X-03) and Arkansas Nuclear One, Unit 1 (ANO-1) Startup 1 Transformer (X-03). A loss of one of the two available offsite power sources for ANO-2 resulted in an auto-start of the ANO-2 Emergency Diesel Generator (2K-4B) to supply ANO-2 safety bus 2A-4 and initiation of the Emergency Feedwater (EFW) System.

Investigations determined the most probable cause of the event that led to failure of the Unit Auxiliary Transformer began with a phase-to-ground fault on the 6900V ‘C’ phase non-segregated bus flexible link for 2X-02. Transformer 2X-02 protective relays designed to isolate the bus from an electrical fault actuated, but due to a disconnected lead, the Main Generator Lockout relays failed to actuate leading to 2X-02 failure. A root cause evaluation determined a flexible link for 2X-02 was not properly installed which led to an insulation breakdown at the bolted connection. The subsequent 2X-02 explosion and fire resulted from a non-landed wire due to a human performance error most likely occurring in 1995 that failed to connect the DC conductor to the output contacts for the protective relays.
[link to www.nucpros.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/15/2014 01:30 PM
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INTERVIEW: Kan blasts plan to restart Hamaoka nuclear plant

Former Prime Minister Naoto Kan, who effectively shut down the Hamaoka nuclear plant following the 2011 Fukushima disaster, criticized as “radically wrong” preparations to bring the facility back online.

In a Feb. 14 interview with The Asahi Shimbun, Kan said the precarious situation surrounding the nuclear plant in quake-prone Shizuoka Prefecture remains unchanged.

Chubu Electric Power Co. earlier in the day submitted an application with the Nuclear Regulation Authority for safety screenings of the No. 4 reactor at the Hamaoka plant, part of the process to restart operations there.

Located in Omaezaki, the Hamaoka plant lies directly above a source area for a predicted giant earthquake along the Nankai Trough, a 4-kilometer depression on the seabed that stretches 700 km from Suruga Bay off Shizuoka Prefecture to areas off eastern Kyushu.

Major temblors have taken place along the Nankai Trough throughout history.
[link to ajw.asahi.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/15/2014 01:31 PM
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TEPCO aims to cut airborne radiation from Fukushima plant to one-eighth

Tokyo Electric Power Co. has set a goal of reducing airborne radiation levels outside its crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant to one-eighth the current levels by the end of March 2016.

TEPCO’s target of under 1 millisievert a year, part of its plans to decommission the reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 plant, was announced at a meeting with the Nuclear Regulation Authority on Feb. 14.

Annual levels of 8 millisieverts were found in December, mainly due to the effects from radiation-contaminated water kept in storage tanks on the plant site.
[link to ajw.asahi.com]
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02/15/2014 01:56 PM
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UK AGRs record highest output in eight years

Generation from EDF's French fleet remained stable in 2013, while its UK units achieved their highest output in eight years. The company looks forward to longer generation from its AGR units in the UK.

Releasing its 2013 full-year results, the French company praised the performance of its UK nuclear plants in producing 60.5 TWh of electricity, 0.5 TWh more than in 2012. The company said that the improved performance reflected "structural improvement of the AGR fleet" through planned maintenance and the company's own nuclear investment program over the past five years, as well as benefits from synergies with its French counterpart.
[link to www.world-nuclear-news.org]
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Broker in nuke reactor scandal gets jail term for graft

BUSAN, Feb. 14 (Yonhap) -- A district court on Friday sentenced a broker in a high-profile corruption scandal surrounding nuclear reactors to three years and six months in prison for taking bribes from a local builder.

Oh Hee-taek was found guilty of accepting 1.78 billion won (US$1.5 million) in kickbacks from Hankook Jungsoo Industries Co. in exchange for helping the local water treatment firm win its bid to take part in the government's project to build nuclear reactors in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The eastern branch of the Busan District Court also ordered Oh to pay 1.78 billion won in fines.

South Korea signed a contract with the UAE in 2009 to build four nuclear reactors, with construction currently under way.

During the prosecution's probe, Oh was found to have provided some of the bribes to former vice commerce minister Park Young-june in exchange for influence peddling. Park was known as one of the closest confidants to then President Lee Myung-bak.
[link to www.nucpros.com]
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02/16/2014 11:12 AM
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Group warns more nuclear power plants may shut down

The chief executive officer of a trade group representing the nuclear power industry warned Wall Street analysts Thursday that more power plants in the sector may be headed for shutdown.

Marvin Fertel, president and chief executive officer of the Nuclear Energy Institute, cited the pending shutdown of the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power plant in New England as an example that the current competitive market that power producers bid into doesn’t adequately value the reliability the industry’s plants provide. Vermont Yankee’s owner, Entergy, announced in 2013 that the nuclear power plant, which is located along the Connecticut River just outside of Brattleboro, would shutdown at the end of this year.

Fertel said in a statement that the shutdown of Vermont Yankee was a “perfectly rational business decision” for Entergy, but wrong for society as a whole. He also cited last year’s shutdown of the Kewaunee nuclear plant in Wisconsin as another example of the flawed marketplace as it relates to nuclear energy.

“There was nothing wrong with these plants,” Fertel said. “There is something wrong with the design and operation of the markets in which they are operating. They do not value the base load capacity that can be dispatched when needed, do not provide value for fuel end technology diversity.”
[link to www.nhregister.com]
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02/16/2014 11:14 AM
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UK Officials Unhappy With US-Led Cleanup of Sellafield Nuclear-Waste Site

U.K. officials have slammed the management of the huge U.S.-led cleanup program at the Sellafield nuclear-waste site, located in northwest England, months after it was awarded a five-year contract extension.

The consortium, called Nuclear Management Partners Ltd. (NMP), "has failed to provide ... clear leadership, strong management and improved capabilities,” says Margaret Hodge, a member of Parliament who is chairwoman of its Public Accounts Committee, following an investigation into the estimated $115-billion Sellafield cleanup.
[link to enr.construction.com]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/17/2014 02:37 PM
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The never ending story...

Water leaks from barrier found at Fukushima plant

The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant says officials have found water leaks at 7 locations in a barrier that surrounds tanks holding contaminated water.

Tokyo Electric Power Company officials said they confirmed on Sunday that water had leaked from the barrier near the Number 4 reactor. It's one of 30 barriers in the compound.

The officials said the amount of the leak was about 19.2 tons, which they believe seeped into the ground.
[link to www3.nhk.or.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/17/2014 02:37 PM
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FWIW...

Decontamination at over 50% outside Fukushima

Officials at Japan's Environment Ministry say more than 50 percent of homes outside Fukushima Prefecture have undergone government-funded decontamination following the March 2011 nuclear accident.

The officials say the work was done on nearly 80,000 homes at the end of last year.

The figure represents 59 percent of homes marked for decontamination in 58 municipalities.
[link to www3.nhk.or.jp]
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Anonymous Coward
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02/17/2014 02:38 PM
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Sad sh!t but what else can they to do???... leaking tanks and many of them will sooner or later break...

IAEA backs controlled discharge of tainted water into sea from Fukushima plant

TOKYO — The U.N. nuclear watchdog has urged Japan to consider “controlled discharges” into the sea of contaminated water used to cool the crippled reactors at Fukushima.

The proposal was among recommendations outlined in a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency after its latest inspection of the worst nuclear accident in a generation.

“The IAEA team believes it is necessary to find a sustainable solution to the problem of managing contaminated water,” the 72-page report said.

“This would require considering all options, including the possible resumption of controlled discharges to the sea.”
[link to www.japantoday.com]
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