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October 24, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 24th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 24, 2016 – Syracuse.com – Legislator: Saving nukes will spare NY consumers from power price spike (Your letters) – In August, the New York state Public Service Commission adopted the Clean Energy Standard which included, among other things, subsidies for the Upstate nuclear plants. Since that time, the anti-nuclear crowd has ramped up their criticism of the PSC’s forward-thinking solution and now there is an effort to get the Clean Energy Standard overturned. The criticism is baffling, particularly from so-called environmentalists considering that nuclear power is clean and generates zero carbon emissions 24/7. If the PSC had not included nuclear power in the Clean Energy Standard, it is likely that all four nuclear power plants in Upstate New York would have had to close down — never to reopen. This would be economically catastrophic for Upstate New York resulting in the loss of thousands of jobs. Closure of our nuclear plants would also mean New Yorkers would have to import more of our power from out-of-state — likely coming from generators who use gas and coal, something the environmentalist crowd is demanding we become less reliant on.

October 24, 2016 – pc-tablet.co.in – International conference accepts a nonsense paper written using iOS autocompete – Christoph Bartneck is a Professor at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand and he pulled out a prank which to many must look like utter nonsense but for many somewhat intriguing. The learned Professor was invited to a conference on atomic and nuclear physics. He and the topic were alike as cheese and chalk. You may ask why? Well, he is an authority in Human Interface Technology and did not know anything about Atomic Physics, Nuclear energy, fission, fusion or Radioactivity. Without a clue he just wrote two words- Atomic and nuclear and bingo! A suggestion popped up, courtesy to iOS auto complete feature. The learned professor wrote out his paper with the words churned out by the app and wonder in thunder, his work has been accepted by the International Conference on Atomic and Nuclear Physics.

October 24, 2016 – KNPR.org – Waste, Families Left Behind As Nuclear Plants Close – A drive 30 minutes north of Omaha, Neb., leads to the Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant. It’s full of new equipment. There’s a white concrete box building that’s still under construction. It’s licensed until 2033. But the plant is closing Monday. Nuclear power is expensive, especially when compared to some of the alternatives, so the U.S. nuclear power industry is shrinking. As more plants go offline, industry leaders are forced to reckon with what critics call a “broken system” for taking plants out of service and storing radioactive waste.

October 24, 2016 – PhysOrg – Modernizing the format of nuclear data – When atomic nuclei collide with other nuclei or subatomic particles, a large number of reactions can occur, resulting in many possible products. High-quality data describing these nuclear reactions are essential for many important scientific, engineering, and commercial applications. These applications include nuclear reactor design and safety, radioactive waste disposal, stockpile stewardship of nuclear weapons, medical radioisotope therapy and diagnostics, fusion energy experiments, astrophysics, nuclear forensics, and more. At Lawrence Livermore, accurate and complete nuclear data are critical for both theoretical and experimental research. Despite the importance of nuclear data to so many fields, the format for storing, evaluating, and using these data goes back to the 1960s, when computing was based on 80-column punch cards—small, stiff sheets of paper that contain information represented by the presence or absence of holes in predefined positions. As a result, existing formats, principally Livermore’s Evaluated Nuclear Data Library (ENDL) and the widely adopted Evaluated Nuclear Data Format (currently in version 6, or ENDF-6), are badly outdated. In response to the long-recognized need for modernization, the Nuclear Data and Theory group at Lawrence Livermore has developed a far more capable and flexible format called Generalized Nuclear Data (GND), which takes advantage of many recent advances in computer technology. GND is readable by both computers and humans, flexible, and extensible for supporting new types of nuclear data.

October 24, 2016 – Prague Daily Monitor – Drábová says nuclear waste storage site should be close to plant – A permanent radioactive waste repository would be best located right at the nuclear power plant, whether in Dukovany, south Moravia, or Temelin, south Bohemia, Dana Drabova, chairwoman of the State Office for Nuclear Safety (SUJB), said on Czech Television (CT) yesterday. The Czech Republic should build the facility by 2065. The costs are estimated at 112 billion crowns. There are currently 24 billion crowns on its account. Every entity which produces the waste sends 50 crowns to the account per megawatt-hour of generated power. At present, nuclear waste is deposited in temporary stores within the two power plants’ compounds.

October 24, 2016 – WVXU – 10 Years Since The Clean-Up Of The Fernald Site Was Completed – From 1951 until 1989, the Feed Materials Production Center in Fernald, Ohio, about 20 miles northwest of Cincinnati, was a key player in the Cold War, processing uranium for the United States nuclear weapons program. But in the 1980s you couldn’’t watch or read the news without seeing a story about the environmental issues plaguing the site and causing concern and anger among its neighbors. When production at Fernald ended, cleanup and environmental remediation began. That work was completed in 2006, and today the site is home to the Fernald Preserve, more than 1,000 acres of wetlands and wildlife habitat.

October 24, 2016 – Medical XPress – Radiation method could enhance cancer-killing effect of treatment, reduce side effects – A Purdue-related startup is developing a unique nanoparticle ultraviolet radiation technology that could enhance cancer cell killing effects of radiation treatment, thus reducing radiation doses and patient side effects. You-Yeon Won, a professor in Purdue’s School of Chemical Engineering, and Rachel Kim, an MBA graduate from MIT Sloan, co-founded the company Lodos Theranostics to further develop the patented technology named Radio Luminescence Therapy. “Annually in the United States about one million cancer patients receive radiation treatment and about half of those patients qualify for radio sensitization treatments where they receive additional agents to enhance the radiation effect.

October 24, 2016 – PhysOrg – New materials with photonic crystals that filter radiation designed – Research by the NUP/UPNA-Public University of Navarre has proposed various designs for photonic crystal materials that can be used to filter radiation. Specifically, the focus has been to develop a coating comprising dielectric spheres that, applied to a window, would prevent outside heat from entering in the summer and the indoor heat from escaping in winter. The samples designed and the results obtained suggest a means for developing the right technique to obtain materials of this type in the future, although the outcome of the tests, which were carried out using low-cost, traditional techniques, were not what had been expected. This is according to a Ph.D. thesis by Paola Morales titled “Efectos de filtrado por recubrimiento de cristal fotónico” (Effects of filtering using photonic crystal coating) read at the NUP/UPNA.

October 24, 2016 – Wall Street Journal – Russians Conduct Nuclear-Bomb Survival Drills as Cold War Heats Up – Russian authorities have stepped up nuclear-war survival measures amid a showdown with Washington, dusting off Soviet-era civil-defense plans and upgrading bomb shelters in the biggest cities. At the Kremlin’s Ministry of Emergency Situations, the Cold War is back. The country recently held its biggest civil defense drills since the collapse of the U.S.S.R., with what officials said were 40 million people rehearsing a response to chemical and nuclear threats. Videos of emergency workers deployed in hazmat suits or checking the ventilation in bomb shelters were prominently aired on television when the four days of drills were held across the country. Students tried on gas masks and placed dummies on stretchers in school auditoriums.

October 24, 2016 – Reuters – Bulgarian prosecutors seek to waive immunity of former energy minister over nuclear project – Bulgaria’s chief prosecutor asked parliament on Monday to strip former energy minister Delyan Dobrev of his immunity for losing over 4.5 million euros ($4.9 million) in state funds over a cancelled nuclear project. Prosecutors accuse Dobrev, who was energy minister in the first government of Prime Minister Boiko Borisov, of failing to take steps to stop payments to a consultant company engaged with the Belene nuclear project after it was cancelled in 2012. “The request is based on evidence collected by Sofia City Prosecution for a crime committed by Delyan Dobrev when he was an economy and energy minister, which caused damages worth 4.56 million euros to the state energy firm NEK,” the chief prosecutor said in a statement.

October 24, 2016 – WBFO 88.7 – Canadian nuclear regulatory inspections called inadequate – Canada’s federal government watchdog is calling for the country’s nuclear regulator to beef up inspections of the country’s nuclear power plants. In a recent report, the commissioner of the environment found several serious issues. Canada has five nuclear power plants, three of them in Ontario. Of those three, two of them are on the north shore of Lake Ontario, just east of Toronto. Together, they supply enough energy for almost 3.5 million people. But the commissioner of the environment has found the agency that regulates the nuclear industry was not adequately inspecting those nuclear power plants. Julie Gelfand says her audit focused only on how the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission manages its site inspections.

October 24, 2016 – Reuters – Suit seeks to overturn New York nuclear power plant subsidies – A group of electrical power companies have filed a federal lawsuit challenging a state commission’s plan to provide subsidies to four nuclear power plants as a means of reducing air pollution. In the complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan on Wednesday, the plaintiffs claimed the New York Public Service Commission’s plan will depress wholesale electricity prices in the short term but ultimately force non-subsidized generators from the market and raise energy prices for consumers.

October 24, 2016 – Powermag.com – Generators Sue to Block Lifeline for New York Nuclear Plants – A group of generators including Dynegy and NRG Energy filed suit in federal court on October 19 seeking to block an incentive program that would help three New York nuclear power plants remain economic over the next decade. An August decision by the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) approving New York’s Clean Energy Standard included a provision requiring the state’s investor-owned utilities and other energy suppliers to pay for the intrinsic value of carbon-free emissions from nuclear power plants by purchasing “Zero-Emission Credits” (ZEC). Those credits are added to the wholesale price each plant receives for its power, and the costs are passed on to ratepayers.

October 24, 2016 – Atlanta Business Chronicle – Georgia Power, PSC staff reach agreement on Vogtle costs – Georgia Power Co. customers would get a rate reduction of $325 million toward construction of the nuclear expansion at Plant Vogtle during the next four years under a settlement agreement signed Thursday. Under the terms of the deal, reached by negotiators representing the Atlanta-based utility and Georgia Public Service Commission staff, all of Georgia Power’s spending on the project through the end of last year would be deemed “prudent,” as would costs associated with this year’s legal settlement between the utility and Vogtle prime contractor Westinghouse Electric Co.

October 24, 2016 – Palm Beach Post – FPL starts work to reduce too-salty plume at Turkey Point – Florida Power & Light Co. has embarked on a 10-year, $206 million clean up of extremely salty water from its Turkey Point plant’s cooling canal system, which poses a threat to drinking water for roughly 3 million people as far north as Boca Raton. Florida Power & Light Co. has embarked on a 10-year clean up of extremely salty water from its Turkey Point plant’s cooling canal system, which poses a potential threat to drinking water for roughly 3 million people as far north as Boca Raton. The fix is expected to cost FPL customers $206 million over the decade, FPL spokesman Peter Robbins said Thursday. This year’s portion of the cost is $50 million. Customers will pay for the remediation through environmental fees in their bills. This year the 1,000 kilowatt-hour customer is paying $2.63 a month, and next year will decrease to $2.42.

October 24, 2016 – WTVY – Dale Co. private property could host nuclear waste storage research – A major nonprofit research firm says it wants to drill a 3 mile deep hole in Dale County for research on how to store nuclear waste. Battelle based headquartered in Columbus, Ohio plans to submit a proposal to the U.S. Department of Energy Monday to drill a bore-hole three miles deep beneath private property in Dale County and other locations around the country. “Everybody wants to know geologic questions, based on places that are unexplored, and this is exploring three miles beneath your feet. That combination of drilling has never been done, so, the combination, of that deep, that vertical, that cylindrical, is what we’re after, and what we are going to prove that that engineering feat can be done,” said Battelle Company Spokesperson, and Senior Media Specialist for Battelle, T.R. Massey.

October 24, 2016 – Christian Science Monitor – After 20 years of nuclear dormancy, a new reactor emerges in the US – In many American cities, nuclear power plants are rapidly shutting down. But in others, they’re just now popping up. After more than four decades of intermittent construction, a new reactor has begun commercial operation in Tennessee. Watts Bar Unit 2, built and operated by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), is the country’s 100th nuclear generator and the first new one in 20 years. The 1,150-megawatt generator, which was originally connected to the power grid in June, is now producing electricity for to 650,000 homes and businesses in Tennessee’s southeast corner. The opening of a new nuclear power plant amid closures of existing plants is a reflection of the mixed views of nuclear energy in the United States. While opponents caution that nuclear power comes with risks of meltdown that cannot be ignored, to advocates – including some environmentalists – nuclear power represents a clean and inexpensive source of energy and a vital transitional fuel that can help the US move away from fossil fuels and achieve energy independence.

October 24, 2016 – Dothan Eagle – Rehobeth students go to the source for lesson in nuclear power – Zakary Brooks and Alexis Enfinger tore through Farley Nuclear Plant’s visitor’s center Thursday, marking down facts gathered from educational exhibits. The fact-gathering mission was part of a scavenger hunt intended to help students learn more about nuclear energy. Brooks and Enfinger were among 80 Rehobeth Middle School students who visited Farley Nuclear Plant on Thursday for Nuclear Science Week activities. Neecie Tarrant, a plant spokesperson, said the scavenger hunt is an interactive teaching tool that helps students better remember the information they learned during the visit.

October 24, 2016 – KNAU Arizona Public Radio – ADEQ Renews Air-Pollution Permits for Three Uranium Mines Near Grand Canyon – State officials have cleared three uranium mines near the Grand Canyon to continue operations. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality recently approved new air-pollution permits for the mines close to the canyon’s North and South rims. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports. The new permits include enhanced dust-control measures and increased soil sampling requirements. Mine operators will also have to reduce uranium stockpiles and cover any open storage areas. “We are confident that these measure, while enhanced, will be more than adequate to protect human health and the environment. We recognize the real sensitivity of the area. We not only want to make sure we’re protecting any public in the area, but certainly protecting one of the wonders of the world,” says Timothy Franquist, ADEQ’s air quality director.

October 24, 2016 – Seattle Times – Nuclear energy is the best option for a clean-energy future – In the letter “Nuclear power: Not worth the risk” [Northwest Voices, Oct. 17], the writer supported the Seattle City Council’s vote calling for City Light to replace the electricity purchased from the Columbia Generating Station. Nuclear-generating plants provide by far the greatest carbon-free electrical power in the country (approximately 60 percent), as well as reliable baseload power. Wind and solar must be paired with co-generation, which in most cases is by gas-fired plants producing carbon dioxide. Climate change may be the biggest problem facing society. Mitigation seems to require rapid replacement of fossil fuels from our energy mix. Like many environmentalists I have come to the realization that nuclear is the only currently available technology that can replace fossil fuels in any meaningful way, providing a bridge to the goals set in the Paris agreement.

October 24, 2016 – KSBY – Public hearing on impending Diablo Canyon closure – Dozens of community members attend a public hearing Thursday afternoon. For the first time, the public was able to voice concerns Thursday directly to the California Public Utilities Commission over the impending closure of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant. Eleven elected officials and 32 public members took to a microphone to help the CPUC reach an informed decision. Since PG&E announced its joint proposal back in June, it has held five public meetings to get feedback from the community. The application was filed in August. That started the state’s review process, part of which happened Thursday.