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August 31, 2016 – Press Pieces

On August 31st, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

August 31, 2016 – Stars & Stripes – Former senator pledges to support vets in Fukushima lawsuit – Former Sen. John Edwards has pledged to support hundreds of U.S. sailors, Marines and airmen who say they were sickened by radioactive fallout from the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. U.S. forces participated in relief efforts after a 9.0-magnitude earthquake triggered a tsunami that battered swaths of northeastern Japan, including the plant. Edwards — the 2004 Democratic nominee for vice president who ran for president that year and in 2008 — has offered his “legal and personal assistance” to the plaintiffs after hearing about their lawsuit against the Tokyo Electric Power Co., which operates the plant, according to a statement from the plaintiffs’ attorneys.

August 31, 2016 – MRT.com – Procedure can shrink cancerous tumors of the liver – Radioembolization is a procedure that is used to treat cancers of the liver. In the procedure, small particles are delivered via the arteries supplying the liver. The particles contain a radioactive element –Yttrium-90 — that delivers radiation over a small distance. Because the particles are delivered directly to the tumor, a larger dose can be given to the tumor than with standard radiation therapy.

August 31, 2016 – WebIndia123 – Radiologists and Imaging Centres to shut shop tomorrow – Radiological and Imaging Centres across the country will shut shops from tomorrow in protest against the victimisation and harassment by authorities in the implementation ofPre Conception and Pre National Diagnostic Test (PC and PNDT) Act. Indian Radiological and Imaging Association Prsident Dr Balakrishna Shetty told UNI here today that though the provisions of the Act was nobel and most of the Centres were strictly following them. Many honest Radiologists who do not have even remote connection with sex determination have been victimised by the authorities even for simple clerical errors. Dr Shetty said that all ultrasound services would be suspended till justice was served.

August 31, 2016 – Healio – Study showed low patient, surgeon radiation exposure during direct anterior approach THA – Researchers performed a retrospective chart review of 157 patients who underwent direct anterior approach total hip arthroplasty (THA) between 2012 and 2014. Of these, 117 cases were included in the analysis. Researchers collected exposure time, radiation emittance and peak kilovoltage (kVp) from patients’ electronic medical records. Results showed an average absorbed dose of radiation of approximately 2.97 milligray, with an average exposure time per procedure of 23.74 seconds. To create the image, researchers found an average amount of maximum energy of 75.38 kVp was used. Although kVp and BMI had a significantly strong correlation, researchers noted a positive but weak linear relationship with radiation dose and BMI and a weak correlation between fluoroscopy time and BMI.

August 31, 2016 – Nuclear Street – ROSATOM Meets With Ghana’s Nuclear Power Team – Russian nuclear corporation ROSATOM reported Tuesday that representatives of relevant agencies of the Republic of Ghana held the first meeting of the Joint Coordinating Committee (JCC) as part of implementation of the Intergovernmental Agreement on the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The meeting was a follow up to the agreement signed on June 2, 2015. ROSATOMROSATOM sent its own delegation to the meeting, headed by Victor Polikarpov, regional vice-president of Sub-Saharan Africa. The lead delegate from Ghana was Benjamin Botwe Nyarko, director of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC). Various other departments of ROSATOM, the Ministry of Energy and GAEC were present.

August 31, 2016 – San Luis Obispo Tribune – When nuclear plants close, communities get little help for their ailing economies – Closures of nuclear power plants are taking an economic toll on communities across the nation, leading those left to pick up the pieces to ask: What about us? There’s been a growing call for more economic development assistance for host communities that face years of financial decline from the loss of jobs, tax revenue and charitable donations. The effects are especially hard on small, rural communities such as Kewaunee County, Wisconsin, where the nuclear power plant owned by Dominion Resources contributed an estimated $630 million per year to the regional economy.

August 31, 2016 – WDEF – Fire at the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant facility – TVA officials say the public was never in danger from a fire Tuesday night at the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant near Spring City. Fire crews from Rhea and Meigs County battled a transformer fire at the switch yard. TVA declared an unusual event at the plant, but officials say neither nuclear reactor was threatened by the fire. The exact cause of the transformer malfunction is under investigation.

August 31, 2016 – Rappler – Philippines eyes reviving mothballed nuclear plant – The Philippines may revive a nuclear power plant that was completed 32 years ago but never switched on due to safety fears, the government said on Wednesday, August 31. The spokesman for President Rodrigo Duterte said the government is considering brining the $2.3 billion plant into operation to meet the country’s growing power needs, despite entrenched opposition from activists and environmentalists. The 620-megawatt plant, built in Bataan province during the notoriously corrupt regime of dictator Ferdinand Marcos, has been a subject of controversy for decades. “(Officials) are considering all options for sustainable and affordable energy, and reviving the Bataan Nuclear Plant is being considered,” spokesman Ernesto Abella said.

August 31, 2016 – IHS Jane’s 360 – South Korean politicians demand nuclear-powered submarine fleet – Politicians from South Korea’s ruling Saenuri Party on 29 August called for the government to respond to the increasing threat posed by Pyongyang’s military provocations by developing nuclear-powered submarines, Yonhap news agency reported. A total of 22 party members, led by Won Yoo-chul, said in a statement that North Korea’s test-firing on 24 August of a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) demonstrated that the South needs to be better equipped to counter the threat.

August 31, 2016 – Nuclear Street – AREVA Initiates Transfer Of Nuclear Fuel Activities To NewCo – French nuclear power company AREVA, reeling from heavy losses over the past several years, including a $2.2 billion net loss for 2015, announced the initiation of the process for transferring its nuclear fuel cycle activities to NewCo, a new AREVA holding company, as part of its restructuring process. AREVAIn line with the announcements made during the presentation of its 2016-2020 roadmap on June 15, 2016, AREVA SA announces that it has settled, on August 29, 2016, on a draft partial transfer agreement governed by the regime for demergers, with one of its subsidiaries, the New AREVA Holding company (“NewCo”), which provides for the transfer by AREVA SA to NewCo of all assets and liabilities related to its nuclear fuel cycle activities (including Mining, Front End and Back End activities) as well as all bondholder debt, the company said.

August 31, 2016 – KIOS 91.5 FM – Letter from OPPD says nuclear plant to close Oct. 24 – A letter from the chief executive of Omaha Public Power District says the utility will permanently shut down its nuclear plant at Fort Calhoun this fall. The Omaha World-Herald says that comes from correspondence it obtained from OPPD President and CEO Tim Burke to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The letter, dated Thursday, says the Fort Calhoun plant will be shuttered Oct. 24. The utility’s board voted in June to permanently close the plant. Once closed, a nuclear plant must undergo a decommissioning process to remove or decontaminate materials and equipment that have been exposed to radioactivity. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission requires decommissioning to be completed within 60 years of a plant’s closure.

August 31, 2016 – BBC News – Civil nuclear police lose pension battle – A police force which protects British nuclear sites and materials has lost a High Court challenge over a new pension scheme which could see its officers work until they are 65. Most UK police can retire at 60, but Whitehall rules mean Civil Nuclear Constabulary officers must work to 65. Their representatives said officers could not fully protect the public from terrorism if they worked beyond 60. There are some 1,250 CNC officers guarding nuclear sites around Britain.

August 31, 2106 – pahomepage.com – Talen Energy abandons Bell Bend nuclear plant project – Talen Energy announced Wednesday it’s withdrawing its license application for a second proposed nuclear power plant in Luzerne County. The company sent a written request to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, saying it sees no “viable path” to obtaining a license for its proposed Bell Bend nuclear power plant. The company first filed an application in October 2008 to build the plant adjacent to the company’s existing Susquehanna nuclear power plant. In it’s letter to the NRC, Talen Energy says the project became unworkable when AREVA, the company that developed the reactor design for Bell Bend, asked the NRC in February 2015 to suspend the design certification process.

August 31, 2016 – BBC News – Public input ‘important’ for Wylfa Newydd nuclear project – The company behind the proposed Wylfa Newydd nuclear power station on Anglesey has said it is “important” to get feedback from the public. Horizon Nuclear Power has launched its second formal public consultation on the project, which it says will bring significant investment to the island. People will have until 25 October to respond to the latest plans, which will be on display at exhibitions across north Wales.

August 31, 2016 – Marines.mil – CBIRF responds to simulated nuclear detonation during Scarlet Response 2016 – On the morning of Aug. 22, 2016, a nuclear bomb detonated near Houston. The explosion rendered massive damage to the infrastructure of the city including a complete shutdown of a highway leading to Houston forcing part of the city into isolation. This was a simulated detonation during a training exercise, in which Marines and sailors with Chemical Biological Incident Response Force deployed as part of an Initial Response Force as part of Exercise Scarlet Response 2016 at Guardian Centers in Perry, Ga., Aug. 22-26, 2016. During Scarlet Response 2016, the unit participated in three days of section-specific training. Each element of the IRF responded to different scenarios under instructor supervision to simulate a real world event, all leading to a final 48-hour, non-stop simulated response to a nuclear detonation.

August 31, 2016 – Camping Canuck – Wood Ants Thriving In Nuclear Bunker – A colony of ants built their nest over the vertical ventilation pipe of an old nuclear weapon bunker in Poland. According to a new study, every year a large number of wood ants fall down the pipe to never return back to their colony. This unique population is described in the open access Journal of Hymenoptera Research by the team of Polish scientist Wojciech Czechowski, Polish Academy of Science. “Judging from the huge deposits of wood-ant corpses in the bunker, the ‘colony’ has survived for years,” the researchers write. Yet, with conditions so severe, reproduction in the bunker is deemed to be highly unlikely. Rather, the colony appears to receive constant input of new worker ants that fall down the ventilation pipe. In fact, these newcomers are outpacing bunker worker deaths, resulting in a growing colony.

August 31, 2016 – Deutsche Welle – Puzzling path to new UK nuclear power stations – Over the past several years, a number of companies have put forth applications to build new nuclear reactors in the UK. But none have started construction, and now, there’s some doubt whether any of them will go forward. At the end of July, the new UK government led by Theresa May announced a delay in the approval of Hinkley Point C, the new-build nuclear power reactor project currently closest to going ahead, pending a review. Mycle Schneider, an anti-nuclear analyst who is convening lead author of the World Nuclear Industry Status Reports, said he doubts any new UK reactors will actually get built. And if any are built, he doubts they’ll ever be put into service: “There have been at least 92 nuclear reactors construction projects around the world that were abandoned at various stages of completion.”

August 31, 2016 – Interfax – Ukraine plans to hire South Korean nuclear operator to finish Khmelnytsky plant – Ukraine’s NNEGC Energoatom plans to hire South Korean nuclear plant operator Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) to complete construction of the N3 and N4 blocks at the Khmelnytsky nuclear power plant and implement the Ukraine-EU Energy Bridge project, the Energy and Coal Industry Ministry said in a statement. Energoatom and KHNP signed a memorandum of understanding in Kyiv on Wednesday to expand cooperation in the nuclear energy sector, focusing on cooperation in completing the Khmelnytsky plant and implementation of the energy bridge.

August 31, 2016 – Commonsnews.org – VY puts ‘on hold’ proposal to discharge tainted water into river – Vermont Yankee administrators say they’re getting a stubborn groundwater-intrusion problem under control, and they’re no longer actively pursuing a proposal to discharge tainted water into the Connecticut River. While liquid continues to seep into the shut-down nuclear plant’s turbine building, that is happening at a greatly reduced rate, spokesman Marty Cohn said. So there is no current need to consider discharging the water, Cohn said. In fact, he said Vermont Yankee is cutting back on tanker-truck shipments that had been carrying the contaminated liquid out of state for the past several months.

August 31, 2016 – National Post – B.C. ‘underwater’ pilots explore scuttled atomic bomb test ship, its first visit in 65 years – Two underwater technologists from B.C. and a former Vancouver Maritime Museum executive director are playing a key role in the rediscovery and examination of an atomic-bomb test ship scuttled off the California coast. Last week, as thousands of viewers watched online, Josh Chernoff and Rueben Mills gently manoeuvred the remote underwater vehicle Hercules around the wreck of the former USS Independence, while James Delgado, the director of maritime heritage for the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration narrated the visit. It was the first time since it was scuttled 65 years ago that subsea mariners and historians had visited the Independence.

August 31, 2016 – Business Daily – Radiation agency gets House team backing in inspection row with Kebs – Public Investments Committee has directed the Health ministry to harmonise or strike out a Kenya Gazette notice that gave Kebs the power to check radiation in imported goods “contrary to the powers given to the Radiation Protection Board (RPB)”. Committee’s chairman Adan Keynan gave Health PS Nicholas Muraguri seven days to issue a harmonised notice recognising the RPB as sole body mandated in law to check radiation at the country’s ports of entry.

August 31, 2016 – Pottstown Mercury – Limerick nuke plant holds open house Wednesday – Local residents are invited to attend to learn more about the role nuclear power plays in supplying electricity to Pennsylvania and the benefits it provides to the tri-county area. Visitors can tour the main control room simulator to see first-hand how Limerick operators provide electricity to two million homes and businesses. The family-friendly event will be held at the main facility located at 3146 Sanatoga Road.

August 31, 2016 – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – After New York props up nuclear power generation sector, is Pennsylvania next? – Early in August, nuclear operators in New York got the breather they’ve been wishing for in other states: a way to keep struggling nuclear reactors afloat in a tough market by paying subsidies to the plants for not emitting carbon dioxide. As part of that state’s Clean Energy Standard, utilities will be required to buy “zero emission credits,” providing what is estimated to be a $500 million annual subsidy to keep the nuclear plants open. Nuclear power comprises nearly 30 percent of New York’s electricity supply. The move came after nuclear operators warned they might be forced to shut down reactors early if they didn’t receive financial support for the zero-carbon fuel. Already, more than half a dozen nuclear plants across the country have been pegged for early retirement because they are losing money. With victory in New York, it’s only natural for nuclear operators to use the momentum to go after subsidies in other states, wrote Kit Konolige, a senior utility industry analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, in a recent note.

August 31, 2016 – PRNewswire – Virginia Consumer Group Says Dominion Nuclear Reactor Project Proceeding Unlawfully And Must Get State Approval – The utility Dominion Virginia Power is proceeding unlawfully with plans for the more than $19-billion North Anna 3 reactor and must get formal approval from the Virginia State Corporation Commission (VSCC) before it can continue, according to a petition filed today with the Commission by the Virginia Citizens Consumer Council (VCCC). The VCCC petition for a declaratory judgment states: “At an estimated total cost of at least $19.2 billion, North Anna 3 would be the most expensive power plant ever built in the United States and could raise customers’ rates by 26 percent or more according to the Virginia Attorney General. While Dominion claims that North Anna 3 is needed for compliance with the federal Clean Power Plan, it would be far costlier than the low-carbon alternative of combined renewables, demand-side management, and efficiency … Dominion has not complied with Virginia law by failing to seek SCC approval before making expenditures on project development and beginning preliminary construction of North Anna 3.”

August 31, 2016 – Knoxville News-Sentinel – Final wall of old K-27 building in Oak Ridge, built as part of Manhattan Project, comes down – The official end came at 10:33 a.m. on Tuesday. Demolition workers took down the final wall of the old Building K-27, signaling the milestone last gasp of the massive gaseous diffusion complex, built more than 70 years ago as part of the top-secret Manhattan Project. National, state and local officials joined U.S. Department of Energy representatives and 1,500 project employees in a send-off to the last of five main buildings slated for demolition at the former K-25 site. Many cheered as a mammoth High-Reach machine pulled over the last remnant of the iconic building, which employed 25,266 people at its peak.

August 31, 2016 – Los Alamos Monitor – Latina Style ranks LANL as one of the best places to work – Latina Style magazine Monday named the Los Alamos National Laboratory as one of the 50 best places for Latinas to work. The magazine based its rankings on companies that have actively provided career opportunities for Latinas, especially when first starting out in the workplace. LANL was ranked 43 on the list. Over 800 companies were reviewed. Marriott International was ranked No.1. Latina Style congratulated LANL for making major gains since the last survey, for having Latinos on its board of directors, and for having recruitment programs that specifically targeted Latinas for careers at the lab. LANL Director Charlie McMillan said the lab’s commitment to Latinas is strong and will continue to grow.

August 31, 2016 – Independent – Grand Canyon tribe fears for its future amid battle against uranium mining – Coleen Kaska points over the South Rim of the Grand Canyon towards the rocks and scrub below, where a dark shadow marks the entrance to the old Orphan Mine. “There’s a big old hole down there that is evidence they can’t clean up an area after mining it,” says Kaska, 51, a member of the Havasupai tribe. “The Orphan Mine was here before I was born, and it’s still here to this day.” First mined for copper at the turn of the 20th Century, the Orphan Mine became a source of uranium to supply the nuclear arms race in the 1950s. It was closed in 1969, but not before contaminating the water in nearby Horn Creek with enough uranium that passing hikers are warned not to drink it. The US National Park Service has already spent millions on a clean-up effort that is still in its early stages. “It proves not everything you dig up can be covered again,” says Kaska.

August 31, 2016 – San Luis Obispo Tribune – Nuclear plant’s closure leaves Wisconsin town fighting for its life – Once the plug is pulled on a nuclear power plant, how much is the behemoth worth? Next to nothing, according to Dominion Resources, which owns the now-shuttered Kewaunee Power Station located on 900 acres on Lake Michigan’s shore. The plant was the major source of tax revenue for the town of Carlton, Wisconsin — a farming community of about 1,000 residents. Dominion paid utility taxes to the state, which were shared with Carlton and other local agencies. But when the plant closed in 2013 and was no longer producing energy, Dominion stopped paying the utility taxes that had covered nearly all of Carlton’s expenses for services such as road repair, snow removal and emergency services.

August 31, 2016 – Utility Dive – Decommissioning costs: A blind spot in the nuclear power debate – The following is a viewpoint article from Christina Simeone, director of policy and external affairs at the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy at the University of Pennsylvania. If you are interested in submitting a guest post, please review these guidelines. With over 10 GW of nuclear capacity at risk for premature retirement – defined as retirement before license expiration – many states are considering subsidy policies to keep these economically struggling reactors operating. Arguments for subsidies focus on protecting local jobs, keeping low-cost baseload power, maintaining reliability, and preserving the zero-carbon resources needed to address climate change. Opponents argue that out-of-market subsidies distort competitive markets and amount to ratepayer bailouts of uneconomic generation. Absent from the debate, however, is a focus on what happens to nuclear power plants when they retire and decommission. Specifically, how Americans like you and I will continue to pay more and be subjected to greater risks as nuclear power plants are converted to interim waste storage facilities.