Nuclear Generation

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  1. Nuclear Power: Study: Savings possible by shutting down nuclear power plant

    In this April 8, 2003, file photo, steam rises from Energy Northwest's Columbia Generating Station, Washington state's only nuclear power plant, near Richland, Wash. A new study says Pacific Northwest ratepayers could save hundreds of millions of dollars if the Bonneville Power Administration and Energy Northwest close the region's only commercial nuclear power plant and replace its output with renewable energy. (AP Photo/Jackie Johnston, file) PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A new study says Pacific Northwest utility ratepayers could save hundreds of millions of dollars if the Bonneville Power Administration and Energy Northwest close the region's only commercial nuclear power plant in Richland, Washington and replace its output with renewable energy. The Portland-based McCullough Research consulting firm estimated savings from $261.2 million to $530.7 million over 10 years due to historically low renewable energy prices at the aging plant, The Oregonian/OregonLive (http://bit.ly/2lJ7Z7q) reported. "The rapid drop in renewable energy costs in recent years has been shocking to everyone," said economist Robert McCullough. "It is now possible to affordably replace aging facilities ... without increasing the region's carbon footprint." The report was commissioned by the anti-nuclear group Physicians for Social Responsibility and is the latest in a salvo against the economic feasibility and reliability of the aging Columbia Generating Station . The station is all that's left of a plan to build five nuclear plants in the Northwest, a debacle that led to one of the largest municipal bond defaults in history. The Richland facility was the only one completed. It is an older design that has had a variety of operating issues. Federal regulators recently cleared it to run through 2043. Energy Northwest, a public utility consortium that operates the plant, criticized the report and told the newspaper that the 1,200-megawatt plant has set generating records in four of the past five years. The consortium markets the power through the Bonneville Power Adminstration. The study cited the low cost and abundant supply of renewable power. But the plant's supporters point out that supply differs from capacity — making sure that power is there when you need it. "The report faults CGS for what makes it so valuable: We make electricity around-the-clock," said Mike Paoli, a spokesman for Energy Northwest. "With wind and solar, a lot of the generation happens at off-peak times. When peak demand comes, you have to have baseload generation to cover that." Most experts note that the Northwest wholesale markets are awash in energy, but could soon go into a capacity deficit. Such a shortage could be exacerbated by the slated closure of three coal-fired plants in Oregon, Washington and Montana in 2020 and 2021. Kieran Connolly, Bonneville's vice president for generation and asset management, told the newspaper that the agency is dependent on the nuclear plant when water conditions are low at energy-producing dams. He said some of the nuclear plants slated to close early, such as Diablo Canyon in California, were facing major new capital investments. That's not the case for the Columbia Generating Station, he said. "Our customers' focus is on safely, reliably and cost effectiveness" in meeting electricity needs, he said. "They're not seeing it as a resource they are questioning. They just want to make sure it's well managed."

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    Thu, 23 Feb 2017

  2. Nuclear Power: Robot probes show Japan reactor cleanup worse than expected

    Robot probes sent to one of Japan's wrecked Fukushima nuclear reactors have suggested worse-than-anticipated challenges for the plant's ongoing cleanup.

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    Sat, 18 Feb 2017

  3. Nuclear Power: Exelon rivals sue to block billions of dollars in subsidies

    Competitors of Chicago-based Exelon Corp. filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday opposing legislation that provides billions of dollars in subsidies to the power giant.

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    Thu, 16 Feb 2017

  4. Nuclear Power: Toshiba chairman resigns over huge nuclear business loss

    Toshiba Corp.'s chairman resigned Tuesday after the company logged such massive losses in its nuclear business that it must sell its lucrative computer-chip business to avoid going belly-up.

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    Wed, 15 Feb 2017

  1. Nuclear Power: Cleaner robot pulled from Fukushima reactor due to radiation

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    Fri, 10 Feb 2017

  2. Solar Power: US utilities seek sun as Trump sides with coal, fossil fuels

    The plunging cost of solar power is leading U.S. electric companies to capture more of the sun just when President Donald Trump is moving to boost coal and other fossil fuels.

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    Tue, 7 Feb 2017

  3. Nuclear Power: Feds allow Pilgrim nuclear plant to remain open

    Federal regulators who found 10 safety issues at the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth say the state's only nuclear plant will be allowed to stay open under intense scrutiny.

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    Thu, 2 Feb 2017

  4. The world’s largest nuclear plants differ by age, number of reactors, and utilization

    There are currently 449 operating nuclear reactors in 31 countries, with a total installed generating capacity of more than 390,000 megawatts (MW). Nuclear power plants differ in various ways including reactor types, vessel containments, cooling methods, and dispatch purposes.

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    Wed, 8 Feb 2017

  5. Oil and Gas: Official: American oil companies face no ban by Iran

    Iran's oil minister says there is no ban on American companies working in Iran's oil industry.

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    Wed, 1 Feb 2017

  6. Nuclear Power: Federal agency inspects generator at nuke plant near Phoenix

    The Nuclear Regulatory Commission began a special inspection Monday at the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station west of Phoenix after an emergency diesel generator failed during testing two months ago.

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    Wed, 8 Feb 2017

  7. Nuclear Power: Blast in French nuclear plant's machine room; no radiation

    A fire led to a blast in a nuclear power plant's turbine hall Thursday on France's northwest coast but there was no radiation leak or casualties, operator EDF and local authorities said.

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    Fri, 10 Feb 2017

  8. Nuclear Power: Heysham reactor shuts for planned maintenance

    One of the nuclear reactors at Heysham 1 nuclear power station in Lancashire has been taken out of service for a major maintenance programme.

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    Wed, 8 Feb 2017

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