Welcome to AtomWatch - world nuclear power news and analysis

This blog is aimed at tracing the world news related to nuclear power development internationally and in particular countries. Being an independent resource, we accept all kinds of opinions, positions and comments, and welcome you to discuss the posts and tell us what you think.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Hokkaido Electric eyes LNG-fired power plant

Hokkaido Electric Power Co is considering building its first liquefied natural gas (LNG) power plant to meet growing demand for electricity, a spokesman said on Thursday.

The utility is considering numerous ways of generating power, but it is most seriously considering LNG, the spokesman said.

The Nikkan Kogyo daily reported on Thursday that Hokkaido Electric was considering building an LNG-powered generator with a capacity of 1 million kilowatts, at an estimated cost of 200 billion yen ($1.9 billion).

A power generator of that size would be about the size of a nuclear power plant.

In its latest annual report, Hokkaido Electric said it plans by 2017 to reduce its ratio of coal-generated output to 35 percent of the total from the current 40 percent, and its oil-generated output to 8 percent from 15 percent.

At the same time, it plans to increase its nuclear-generated output to 41 percent of the total from 27 percent.

Electricity generated by LNG and nuclear energy emits less carbon dioxide (CO2) than electricity generated by coal and oil.

Japanese utilities are the country's largest industrial CO2 emitters and are looking to cut emissions to help Japan meet its Kyoto Protocol reduction targets.

(Source: Reuters)

IAEA Concludes Operational Safety Review of Sweden’s Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant


The UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has concluded its operational safety review of Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant and expects to be able to present its final report for Swedish Government inspection within around three months.

The requested OSART review is very much in line with our expectations, said Hans von Uthmann a Senior Executive Vice President of Vattenfall and chair of the board of Forsmark. I would like to thank the OSART team above all for all their hard work in identifying areas for improvement. We can also state that the IAEA inspection clearly shows that the measures initiated a year ago are already bearing fruit.

Areas where IAEA considers there are opportunities for improvement include:

  • Forsmark should review the responsibilities of operating staff, including an analysis and definition of what would be the lowest satisfactory manning level for shifts.
  • In consultation with its shareholders, Forsmark should implement an independent high-level review to maintain adequate safety accountability beyond the operator.
  • Forsmark should strengthen and improve the control and review process of operational documentation, emergency preparedness procedures, and operators aids.
  • Forsmark should improve its programme for feedback on operating experience.
  • Forsmark should establish and implement appropriate control of fire load especially in areas containing safety systems.
  • Forsmark should implement further appropriate chemistry specifications.

IAEA also identified several so-called good practices at the plant, such as:

  • A well-structured management manual which supports communication of management expectations and commitments
  • Computerised monitoring of safety functions and operating status checks
  • Effective management of fire cells in order to prevent the spread of any fire and associated fumes
  • Use of the training simulator to describe complex events to the media and other key groups.

These examples of good practice will be disseminated to other nuclear power plant around the world to enable these too, to have the opportunity of implementing them in their operations.

I am satisfied with the findings that clearly show Forsmark maintains a high international standard and I know that Forsmark has worked very hard with the international review, said Jan Edberg, President, Forsmarks Kraftgrupp AB. We are going to implement the invaluable suggestions we have received through the IAEA OSART review in our ongoing development programme.

(Source: Business Wire)

Reactors still down after massive Florida power outage: officials

Power officials pressedon with efforts Wednesday to bring two nuclear reactors back on line in southern Florida, one day after a massive blackout shut them off and darkened millions of homes across the state.

"The reactors still are not running," said Karen Visepo, spokeswoman for Florida Power and Light, the company responsible for providing power in southern Florida.

The disabled reactors at the Turkey Point nuclear power plant were unlikely to cause new blackouts, she said, but workers labored feverishly to get them operating again.

"Getting them up and running again is a slow process," Visepo said.

Tuesday's monster power outage left millions of people in southern Florida bereft of electricity for several hours.

The downed nuclear reactors have revived controversy in the state over the safety of radioactive energy sources, especially in view of Florida Power and Light's plans to build two more nuclear reactors at its Turkey Point facility.

(read more)

(Source: AFP)

Bulgaria to decide on Belene nuclear power plant by end-March

Bulgaria would decide by end-March which of the five bidders interested in acquiring 49 percent of the planned nuclear power plant at Belene will remain in the race, Reuters reported on February 28.

Belgian utility Electrabel, owned by France's Suez, and Germany's RWE are leading the list of favourites for now, Reuters said. Bulgaria has also received offers from Italy's Enel, Germany's E.ON and Czech company CEZ.

"A decision on the short-list is now expected towards the end of March," an unnamed source told Reuters.

“(Bulgaria's state power grid operat National Electricity Company) NEC could not a reach a decision last week," Reuters reported.

Bulgaria wants the 2000 MW plant in the Danube town of Belene to make the country a major electricity exporter in the Balkans again after it was forced to shut communist-era reactors as a condition of joining the European Union.

Nuclear energy accounts for one third of the country’s power needs and the local Government is among the EU countries, which believe nuclear energy is part of the solution to climate change, as proponents say atomic power emits almost no greenhouse gas emissions, Reuters said.

NEC would retain 51 per cent of Belene, which would be built by Russia's Atomstroiexport, controlled by gas company Gazprom, with France's Areva and Germany's Siemens as subcontractors.
(Source: Sofia Echo)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Britain joins U.S.-led nuclear power club

The government has signed up to a U.S.-sponsored club of countries that want to see more nuclear power plants built globally while keeping atomic weapons in the hands of a few.
Britain became the 21st member of the Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP), which aims to keep a firm grip on technologies that can be used to make nuclear weapons, when UK industry minister John Hutton signed up on Tuesday.
"The UK shares in the vision of improved non-proliferation and nuclear waste management and recognises the real benefits of initiatives such as GNEP," Hutton said in a statement issued before the signing in Washington.
"With a new generation of nuclear energy now set to be part of the UK's future energy mix, the UK is in position to play a role in this global initiative."
The government is in talks with some of Europe's largest utilities about building a new generation of atomic power plants in the country and Hutton is expected to meet U.S.-based companies interested in taking part during his visit.
(read more)
(Source: Reuters)

Germans, Spaniards Reluctant to Nuclear Power

The majority of people in Germany and Spain are against developing new nuclear power plants in their countries, according to a poll by Harris Interactive published in the Financial Times. 68 per cent of respondents in Spain—and 64 per cent in Germany—reject building new reactors.
Support for further nuclear power development is highest in Italy at 58 per cent, followed by the United States with 52 per cent, France with 49 per cent, and Britain with 45 per cent.
Germany has announced it will shut down its existing 17 nuclear reactors by 2020, while Spain will gradually close its eight nuclear plants.
(read more)
(Source: Angus Reid Global Monitor)

Nuclear power plant shutdown in Florida

Authorities in Florida say they don't know what caused two nuclear reactors to automatically shut down this afternoon, knocking out power to up to 3 million people in the state.
The outages appeared to be concentrated in the southeast portion of the state, including Miami. But they were also reported in the state's southwest, northeast and in the Florida Keys.
The reactors are owned by Florida's largest electric company. Officials say there are no safety concerns about the shutdown, and that the outages have no connection to terrorism. They also don't suspect any foul play.
Several Miami-area hospitals switched to back-up generators when the power went out, and schools were scheduled to be dismissed on time.
Some Starbucks customers outside Miami enjoyed free sandwiches given out by servers who feared they would go bad.
The utility company estimates that power will be restored in just a few hours.
(to original article)
(Source: AP)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

China starts excavation for world's first 3rd-generation nuclear plant

China began excavation for the foundations of the world's most advanced nuclear reactor in Sanmen City in the eastern Zhejiang Province on Tuesday.
The No. 1 reactor in Sanmen nuclear power plant will use the third-generation AP1000 technology, which was transferred from the U.S.-based Westinghouse Consortium. It has never been used in any operating power plant previously, said Zhao Hong, a State Nuclear Power Technology Corp. (SNPTC) engineer.
Builders plan to excavate a hole 12 meters deep and more than 20 meters in diameter to house the reactor. It is expected to go into commercial operation in 2013.
"The excavation started one month earlier than the original plan thanks to the support from all sides," Zhao said, adding concrete pouring would start in March 2009.
(read more)
(Source: www.chinaview.cn)

UK to join nuclear power forum

The UK will help develop international policy on the use of nuclear power by joining the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership, Business Secretary John Hutton said.
The GNEP is part of US president George Bush's "advanced energy initiative" and seeks to develop a worldwide consensus on enabling expanded use of economical, carbon-free nuclear energy to meet growing electricity demand.
Mr Hutton, who will sign the agreement during a two-day visit to Washington, will also meet with US energy companies to discuss potential investment in new nuclear build in the UK.
"The UK shares in the vision of improved non-proliferation and nuclear waste management and recognises the real benefits of initiatives such as GNEP to implement the right solutions and further develop international standards and best practice," Mr Hutton said.
"With the UK's advanced knowledge and capabilities, particularly in nuclear waste management, GNEP opens up the potential for UK organisations to share their expertise globally through tapping into international projects and building business partnerships.
"With a new generation of nuclear energy now set to be part of the UK's future energy mix, the UK is in position to play a role in this global initiative."
The UK joins 20 other countries in the international partnership, which aims to promote responsible nuclear development while reducing volumes of waste and the risk of nuclear proliferation.
Energy companies have been asked to submit plans to build new nuclear power stations in the UK, and it is estimated that a decision to start building could be made in mid-2009.
(Source: The Press Association)

Reprocessing used fuel: devil or saint?

Reprocessing advocates claim that the closed fuel cycle is the most sustainable approach for nuclear energy, as it reduces recourse to natural uranium resources and optimises waste management. The advantages and disadvantages of used nuclear fuel reprocessing have been debated since the dawn of the nuclear era. There is a range of issues involved, notably the sound management of wastes, the conservation of resources, economics, hazards of radioactive materials and potential proliferation of nuclear weapons. Sifting through these is not easy, with strong counter-claims made by opposing parties, but it is undoubtedly true that in recent years, the reprocessing advocates appear to be winning once again, perhaps most clearly demonstrated by the apparent change in position of the USA under the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP) programme.
To begin with, it’s important conceptually to distinguish reprocessing from recycling. Reprocessing is stage one – the separation of uranium and plutonium out of used fuel and conditioning of the remaining material as waste. Fuel assemblies removed from a reactor are very radioactive and produce heat, so are cooled (mostly at the reactor site or otherwise at a central storage facility or at the reprocessing plant) for a number of years as the level of radioactivity decreases considerably. For most types of fuel, reprocessing occurs anything from 5 to 25 years after reactor discharge. Recycling is then stage two – the use of the uranium and plutonium from the reprocessing plant, which can be either as mixed oxide (MOX) fuel or reprocessed uranium (RepU) fuel in current reactors or as fuel for future Generation IV reactors. Reprocessing effectively sets up the possibility of recycling. This doesn’t necessarily have to follow, but in practice, the two stages are bound together as reprocessing will likely only be undertaken with a view to eventual recycling.
(read more)
(Steve Kidd, Nuclear Engineering International)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Turkey for Russian involvement in nuclear power plant construction

RIA Novosti
Turkey is all for attracting Russian companies to take part in the construction of nuclear power plants on its territory, the country's foreign minister said on Wednesday.
"Turkey intends to build nuclear power plants, and we want Russian organizations to take an active part," Ali Babacan told a RIA Novosti press conference.
Babacan said Russia and Turkey were not competitors, but partners complementing each other, adding that the two countries successfully cooperated in energy transit, and that Turkey was also a large consumer of Russian oil and natural gas.
"We know Russia is interested in such projects as the underground storage of gas. There is also interest in a project to build a terminal to process liquefied gas in the port of Ceyhan," he said.
It was earlier reported that Turkish authorities were planning to announce on February 21 the date for holding a tender to build the country's first nuclear power plant, set to be constructed on the Mediterranean coast. Local and foreign-based companies are expected to participate.
Turkey expects to build three nuclear power plants by 2016, worth $7-8 billion.
Babacan also said bilateral trade in 2007 had totaled $20 billion. He went on to comment that Russia was Turkey's second largest foreign partner. Turkey is Russia's fourth partner in terms of the exports of Russian goods.
(to original article)

Ahmadinejad: Iran Determined to Continue Nuclear Program

VOA News
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad repeated his defiant stance against Western powers, saying it is Iran's national right to have a nuclear-energy program.
Speaking to a crowd in southern Iran, Mr. Ahmadinejad said Iran considers nuclear energy its definite right and does not accept oppressive regulations.
Nuclear energy is our obvious right, he told the chanting crowd.
According to Iran expert Paul Ingram, of the London-based British-American Security Information Council, Mr. Ahmadinejad's words are a political tool to whip up domestic support.
"While it might serve Ahmadinejad's domestic purposes to make such statements and to frame the debate in a rights-based debate, defending Iran's national pride, their interests lie in a stable region where Iran can play a full part within the regional international community and statements like this do not assist that objective," he said.
(read more)

Romania sees Belene nuclear power plant as "dangerous"

Bulgaria's planned nuclear power plant at Belene on the Danube River posed a risk to Romania's energy security, a top aide to Romanian president Traian Basescu said, as quoted by Romanian daily Business Standard on February 20 2008.
The nuclear power plant in Belene, which would be built next to the border with Romania, used the same technology as the one in Chernobyl and as such posed an "energy security risk" for Romania, Basescu's defense aide Constantin Degeratu was quoted as saying.
On April 26 1986, one of the reactors at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant near Kiev, now in Ukraine, exploded and sent a plume of highly radioactive fallout into the atmosphere. It is the worst nuclear power plant disaster in history.
Degeratu made his comment when discussing the functions NATO could have in ensuring the energy security of its member states during a conference on the issue, held in Bucharest. The conference was part of a series of events, culminating in the NATO summit in the Romanian capital in April.
(original article)

Turkey delays inauguration of first nuclear plant tender

International Herald Tribune
Turkey on Thursday delayed the opening of a tender for the construction of the country's first nuclear power plant.
The energy ministry was waiting for a government audit agency to comment on the tender's technical details before potential bidders could be invited, state-run media said. Officials said earlier but it was not clear how long the delay would be.
Turkey has recently experienced frequent cuts in its natural gas imports from Iran and Azerbaijan, on which it relies heavily for electricity production. Nuclear power is one of the best options Turkey has, Energy Minister Hilmi Guler has said.
"We must use this technology while minimizing its risks," Guler said at a recent Istanbul conference.
Power plants fueled by natural gas produce nearly half of Turkey's total electricity output. NATO member Turkey imports a majority of its natural gas from Russia and Iran.
(read more)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Nuclear fever in the Baltics - analysis

(on photo -Ignalina nuclear power plant, Lithuania)
Four Baltic nations - Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland - have decided to build a powerful nuclear plant together.
The initiative belongs to Lithuania, the only partner that knows what a luxury it is. In the Soviet Union, it had a two-unit RBMK-1500 nuclear power plant on the banks of Lake Druksiai near the town of Ignalina. Lithuania had plenty of energy and exported it to neighbors.
But the situation changed when the Baltic nations applied for European Union (EU) membership. No country can enter that organization for free. For Lithuania, the price of entry was very high - it had to shut down its nuclear power plant. There were no technical reasons for that - the station was working without a hitch, but the European family wanted Lithuania's complete disinfection from the Soviet spirit.
The EU claimed that the RBMK-type reactors were the same that caused the Chernobyl disaster. But the RBMK unit was a water-cooled graphite moderated nuclear reactor and not a twin of Chernobyl, but instead a very successful version of the same model.
Before Lithuania, Bulgaria also found itself in a similar predicament and tried to keep its Kozloduy nuclear power plant, but the EU was adamant and Sofia had to comply with the demand. (read the rest of the article)
(Source: RIA Novosti, Moscow)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Nuclear news 18/02/2008

China starts building Fujian nuclear power plant

China on Monday started building the first nuclear power plant in southeastern Fujian province, the official People's Daily reported, quoting the Fujian Provincial Development and Reform Commission.
The first phase of the Ningde plant will have four reactors with 1 gigawatt (GW) of generating capacity each, and cost 51.2 billion yuan, the largest energy investment project in the province, the newspaper said.
Investors of the plant include Guangdong Nuclear Power Investment Co, Datang International Power Generation Co Ltd and Fujian Coal Group, it said, without detailing the stake each holds.

Indonesian nuke plant
The Jakarta Post

The idea of introducing nuclear power to Indonesia is nothing more than a vehicle for a few needy individuals to gain public attention.
Any moderately educated engineer will agree that Indonesia's need for electricity is widely decentralized so nuclear power or large coal power plants are the ideas of people lacking technical understanding.
It should be common knowledge that "the transmission of electricity over long distance comes with huge loss." There are very few countries in the world with better chances than Indonesia to realize enormous decentralized energy generation at low cost or even free for the country.
Indonesia has a potential 27,000 MW of geothermal sources requiring low investment of which currently only 837 MW are in use. Why? Because Pertamina, PLN and the government have not, over the past 30 years, managed to give the many waiting investors investment security.

Nuclear energy enjoys renaissance

Global warming and rocketing oil prices are making nuclear power fashionable, drawing a once demonized industry out of the shadows of the Chernobyl disaster as a potential shining knight of clean energy.Britain is the latest to recommit itself to the energy source, with its government announcing support Thursday for new nuclear power plants. Nuclear power plants produce around 20 percent of Britain's electricity, but all but one are due to close by 2023.However, some countries hopping on the nuclear bandwagon have abysmal safety records and corrupt ways that give many pause for thought.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Nuclear news 15/02/2008

Russia, Iran to draw up nuclear power plant operation plan by May
RIA Novosti
Russia and Iran will work out a plan for a joint venture to operate the Bushehr nuclear power plant in southern Iran within the next two months, a senior Atomstroyexport executive said on Friday.
"A plan for setting up the joint venture will be drawn up within two months, and the composition and number of Russian and Iranian personnel at the Bushehr NPP will be determined," said Gennady Tepkyan, vice president of the Russian nuclear power equipment and service export monopoly.
He said the joint venture was designed to "provide Iranian specialists with expertise in operating the nuclear power plant," adding that around 760 personnel from Russia and Iran would work there.
Atomstroyexport's chief executive had said on Thursday that the joint venture could be established within three months.

USA: Exelon Ill. Braidwood 2 reactor cut to 57 pct power
Exelon Corp's 1,152-megawatt Unit 2 at Braidwood nuclear power station in Illinois slid to 57 percent by early Friday, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said in a report.
On Thursday, the unit was operating at full power.
The 2,330 MW Braidwood station, which entered service in 1988, is located in Braceville in Will County, about 60 miles southwest of Chicago. There are two units at the station, the 1,178 MW Unit 1 and Unit 2.
Unit 1 continued to operate at full power.

Energy is Pricey—But So Is Building More Power Plants
So far, the pain of rising energy costs has been visible mostly at the gas pump and not in the electricity bill. But that is bound to change—unless we find a way to use a lot less power—due to the skyrocketing cost of building new power plants.
A new study by Cambridge Energy Research Associates shows that the cost of new power plant construction in North America increased 27 percent in just the last year and is 130 percent higher than in 2000. A plant that would have cost $1 billion in 2000, in other words, would cost $2.31 billion today. What's driving those costs is essentially the same thing driving the high cost of gasoline—demand in Asia. That demand is ratcheting up the cost of raw material, equipment, and engineering talent ever higher. CERA said the trend is especially marked in nuclear power construction—if you don't include nuke plants, power construction costs have risen 79 percent since 2000.

Switzerland, Turkey to work on power
A Swiss company may help Turkey build power plants.Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Hilmi Guler said that Swiss EGL Co., which is planning to build the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline, is also considering building a natural gas power plant in Turkey.TAP is a joint project of Turkey and Switzerland that aims to carry Iranian natural gas to the Balkans, Albania and then to Italy via Turkey, Chinese news agency Xinhua reported.Guler, who met Walter Steinmann, the director of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy in Ankara, said that Turkey and Switzerland will sign a memorandum of understanding soon regarding the TAP project.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Nuclear news 14/02/2008

India, Russia agree to cooperate in civil nuclear power, boost trade

Cold War allies India and Russia Tuesday finalised plans for Moscow to build new nuclear power stations here and pledged to boost strategic ties by doubling trade to 10 billion dollars by 2010.
The two countries also decided to step up cooperation in defence, engineering and energy during talks between visiting Russian Prime Minister Victor Zubkov and his Indian host Manmohan Singh in New Delhi.
"We have finalised negotiations... on building additional nuclear power plants in India," Singh said.
Under the terms of the deal, Russia will build four additional reactors at Kudankulam in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

Brilliant future seen for nuclear power
Source:新华网, China

As one of the world's fastest growing economies and the second largest consumer of energy, China is looking more to nuclear power to better distribute its energy sources.
Shandong in East China is one example of how this shift is playing out: There are plans afoot to build three nuclear power plants in the province, two in Weihai and one in Yantai.
The plants are expected to house five reactors with a combined capacity of more than 4,000 mW. Once these plants are finished, Shandong will become an important nuclear power base for the country.
Statistics show that nuclear power has become the third most important power source in China.

Asia’s tigers eye nuclear future
Asia Times

The 2005-07 spike in petroleum prices topping out at US$100 a barrel has prodded economic planners across the globe to reconsider their energy options in an age of growing concern over global warming and carbon emissions.
The Southeast Asian economies, beneficiaries of an oil and gas export bonanza through the 1970s-1990s, now find themselves in an energy crunch as once-ample reserves run down and the search is on for new and cleaner energy supplies. Notably, regional leaders at the 13th ASEAN Summit in Singapore in November 2007 issued a statement promoting civilian nuclear power, alongside renewable and alternative energy sources.

EU backs 170 mln euro aid for Lithuania power plant

The European Commission gave the green light on Thursday for a 170 million euro ($248 million) grant to build a gas-fired power plant in Lithuania by an agency run by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
The planned assistance does not constitute illegal state aid under European Union rules, the EU executive said.
It will be doled out by the Ignalina International Decommissioning Support Fund (IIDSF), which is charged with alleviating the effects of the ongoing closure of a large Soviet-era nuclear power plant.

Turkey decides on nuclear power plant site
Energy Publisher

The Turkish government has decided to build its first nuclear power plant at Akkuyu, on the Mediterranean coast. This puts aside a decision two years ago to locate it at Sinop, on the Black Sea coast.
Akkuyu is the site which has been under consideration since the 1970s and up to 2000 for a nuclear power plant, and has the advantage of already being licensed.
Sinop would have had the advantage of cooling water temperatures about 5 degrees below those at Akkuyu, allowing about 1% greater power output. The announcement of the site selection said that preparatory work is also under way to build a second nuclear plant there. In addition, Akkuyu is to be the site for a €1.7 billion ($2.5 billion) nuclear technology centre.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Foreigners expected to take "key" positions at Belarusian nuclear power plant

Foreign experts will be invited to "key" positions at Belarus' nuclear power plant, Mikalay Hrusha, deputy director general of the Belarusian science academy's Sosny nuclear and power engineering center, said in an interview with BelaPAN.

He said that there are no experts with appropriate skills in Belarus, but there are in Lithuania, Russia and Ukraine, noting that "quite many" foreign specialists "expressed wish" to work at the plant.

However, Mr. Hrusha said, the core staff will still consist of Belarusian workers. "Our goal is to carry out a national project," he explained.

A working group reportedly has been set up to examine matters concerning the training of staff for the nuclear power plant.

Courses in the management and operation of nuclear power stations are expected to be introduced as early as the 2008/2009 academic year by Belarusian National Technical University, Belarusian State University and Andrei Sakharov Minsk State Environmental University.

Mr. Hrusha said that graduates will most likely to undergo practical training at operating plants abroad.
He said that the universities also will invite foreign experts to give lectures.

The government wants to put the first unit of the 2,000-megawatt nuclear power plant in operation in 2016 and start the second one in 2018.

The plant, estimated at $4 billion, is expected to be located in the Mahilyow region. It would generate some 15 percent of the country's energy demand.

Source: Naviny.by

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lukashenka defends decision to build nuclear power plant in Belarus

The construction of a modern and reliable nuclear power plant will help supply Belarus with cheaper electric power, Alyaksandr Lukashenka said while speaking to a group of students in a new building of Belarusian State University on Tuesday, BelaPAN said.

According to the Belarusian leader, the plant would reduce the nation’s needs for imported energy resources by about 30 percent.
Mr. Lukashenka stressed that Belarus has an open-type economy and trades with more than 170 states throughout the world.
It is only possible to maintain a high economic growth rate and improve people’s living standards through using energy resources more efficiently, he noted. “The economy itself makes us look for new and preserve traditional sales markets for out products and sources of raw materials for maintaining the production cycle,” he said.
Mr. Lukashenka insisted that nuclear power generation is safe and advantageous. He cited the example of France where he said nuclear power plants supply more than 80 percent of the nation’s electricity needs. Belarus should not ignore global trends, he said, adding that many countries, including the United States, Britain, Germany, Sweden, Japan, Russia and China, actively develop nuclear power production.
“Our opponents try to earn political dividends by taking advantage of the radiophobia of some part of the Belarusian residents,” Mr. Lukashenka said. “They deliberately keep silent about the fact that modern nuclear power plants are manifold better than the Chernobyl plant in terms of the level of reliability. In addition, they do significantly less harm to the environment than conventional power plants.”
The construction of the nuclear power plant, estimated at $4 billion, is expected to begin in 2009 and to be completed in 2018. The 2,000-MWt plant is supposed to supply some 15 percent of the country’s electricity needs.
Government experts currently consider two sites for the construction of the plant, with one of them located near Bykhaw, Mahilyow region, and the other between Horki and Shklow also in the Mahilyow region, which was affected worst in Belarus by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster along with the Homyel region.

Source: Naviny.by

Nuclear News 12/02/2008

Russia, India Reiterate Nuclear, Hydrocarbon Plans

Russia and India today reiterated plans to jointly set up hydrocarbon projects and build nuclear power generation units in the South Asian nation in an effort to improve economic and political ties.
``I expressed my hope that the ongoing discussions between our oil and gas companies would result in finalization of joint projects in India, Russia and third countries,'' Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told reporters in New Delhi today. He spoke at a joint briefing held with Russian Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov.
The two countries will try to achieve the target of doubling trade to $10 billion by 2010, Zubkov said. Russia and India are negotiating accords discussed when Russian President Vladimir Putin visited India in January 2007.

Poland, Lithuania sign power deal, spurring nuclear plan

Poland and Lithuania Tuesday signed a deal paving the way to hook up their electricity grids, helping offset Russia's energy clout and clearing a hurdle to related plans to build a new nuclear power plant.
In a ceremony with Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his Lithuanian opposite number Valdas Adamkus, the bosses of the two countries' state-owned electricity grid firms inked the accord.
The link is seen as a crucial element in beefing up regional energy security by plugging Lithuania and its Baltic neighbours into the electricity systems of the rest of the European Union.

Turkey revives nuclear power plans
The Press Association

Turkey has revived plans to build its first nuclear power plant on the Mediterranean coast despite warnings from environmentalists that the site was in an earthquake-prone location, the energy minister said.
The minister, Hilmi Guler, said everything was ready for construction at Akkuyu, near the Mediterranean coastal town of Silifke, the state-run Anatolia news agency said.
Turkey will formally invite bids for the project on February 21, he said.
Environmentalists already unhappy because of the safety concerns over nuclear power production oppose the use of the Akkuyu site because they say it is prone to earthquakes.

'Nuclear Power in Europe' Analyzes the Energy Situation in Europe and Explains Why the Continent is in Need of Utilizing Nuclear Power
Teleborsa, Italy

As of September 30, 2007 there was a total of 197 nuclear power plant units with an installed electric net capacity of 169,842 MWe in operation in Europe and 12 units with 9,991 MWe were under construction in five countries. France has been Europe's most enthusiastic devotee of nuclear power, constructing dozens of reactors since the 1970s oil crises spurred on its desire for energy independence. It has become the world's biggest net exporter of electricity, and is also a major exporter of nuclear technology.
The report Nuclear Power in Europe analyzes the energy situation in Europe and why the continent is in need of utilizing nuclear power to serve its growing need for energy and power. The report begins with an overview of nuclear power and an overview of the electricity industry in Europe. Since nuclear power is primarily used for generating electricity, it is important to gage the status of the electricity generating market in Europe.

India's nuclear power sector: no private players for now
The Hindu

The private sector will not be allowed to enter the civilian nuclear power segment for at least another seven years, according to a top government official.
The private sector’s entry is conditional on a separate set of rules for the country strategic programme and other alterations in the Atomic Energy Act. “Work is in progress and is at varying stages. This means that the private sector will not get an opportunity till 2014,” said the official who did not wish to be quoted.
Ever since India signed the 123 Agreement on the nuclear deal with the United States, the private sector has been enthusiastically examining the opportunities for setting up nuclear power plants.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Nuclear news 10/02/2008

Nuclear plants are not carbon neutral
Times Argus

Mining, milling, conversion, refining and fabrication of uranium into fuel rods all use fossil fuels. Storage of waste and decommissioning of the plant also take significant amounts of fuel. Yes, other generators also require dismantling, but they can be sold as scrap metal, to defray costs. Dismantled nuclear generators include many tons of radioactive material that must be sequestered indefinitely.
With the currently available high grade uranium ore (0.2 percent concentration), the nuclear plant results in 20 percent as much carbon dioxide as a natural gas fired power plant. When ore concentrations are lowered to 0.01 percent, the nuclear plant causes the same carbon dioxide production as a natural gas fired plant. And ore quality is declining steadily and will decline faster as more nuclear plants are built. So nuclear plants are not carbon neutral, by any considered analysis. As time goes on, as we approach the time when only the lowest grade ores are available, nuclear power becomes a "carbon loser" compared to natural gas fired generation.
We need to be very clear that nuclear energy does emit carbon dioxide, some now and much more in the future.

In the US, nuclear power is becoming the new green

Thirty years since a US nuclear reactor was ordered and more than a decade since the last plant opened, the controversial energy source is being considered by utilities across the country.
Federal regulators received four licence applications for seven new nuclear-power plants last year and expect to receive another 15 applications for 22 plants this year.
Several factors drive the renewed interest in nuclear energy. Operations, maintenance and fuel costs for nuclear plants have dropped 30% since 1995, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute. At the same time, the cost of operating a coal-fired plant has remained flat, while natural gas prices have surged.
"It's become a matter of economics," said Tom Johnson, from the department of environmental and radiological health sciences at Colorado State University. "Nuclear is starting to become a little bit cheaper than coal."

Nuclear power's costs far outweigh its benefits
JS Online

Proponents of nuclear power argue that it does not produce carbon dioxide and thus does not contribute to global climate change. This argument, endlessly repeated by proponents of nuclear power, ignores the inconvenient fact that without the mining, milling and enrichment of uranium, there is no nuclear power. Each stage of the nuclear fuel cycle is extremely energy intensive and results in the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels.
The most energy-intensive stage of the nuclear fuel cycle is the mining and milling of uranium fuel. As the most accessible and higher grade uranium ores are mined, a greater amount of energy is required to extract uranium from less accessible and lower grade uranium concentrations.

Europe warms up to nuclear power

The nuclear industry in the United States is beginning to show signs of life after years of lying dormant, but it is still weighed down by concerns over accidents, waste disposal and the possibility that fuel might wind up in terrorists' hands.
For inspiration, America needs only to look to Europe, where nuclear energy is increasingly being seen as the only way to tackle the twin problems of climate change and energy security. After years of resistance, the British government last month gave the go-ahead for a new generation of nuclear power stations. As many as 10 new reactors are in the works. Around the world, up to 90 nuclear reactors are being planned, many in Europe.
Adam McCarthy, associate director of Energy Policy Consulting in Brussels, Belgium, said "there is a growing realization that nuclear will have to be part of the energy solution for Europe."
He said the main driver is the desire among Europeans, who tend to be more environment-minded than Americans, to reduce the carbon emissions that cause global warming. Another factor is rising oil and gas prices.

Is nuclear power the answer to global warming?

Utlizing nuclear power is a safe, economical and long term solution to part of the problem of global warming.
Nuclear power has fallen out of favor in the general public because of two well publicized incidents: Three Mile Island, and Chernobyl. Both are anamolies on the otherwise spotless safety record of nuclear power. France operates a sizable (by some estimations 70) percentage of their power completely on nuclear power plants and has not had a single notable safety incident. In America, 20% of our power comes from nuclear energy, and aside from Three Mile Island, there has been no notable safety incident either. In other parts of the world nuclear power is seen as the height of sophisticated safety. The redundancies in all aspects of safety and security are top notch and it is one of the most highly regulated and oft inspected ways of generating power in existence today.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Nuclear news 8/02/2008

Iran starts second atomic power plant - Tass
Reuters India

Iran has started building a second atomic power plant in an oil-rich region near the border with Iraq, Iran's Ambassador to Russia was quoted as saying on Friday by Itar-Tass news agency.
Gholamreza Ansari said construction had started at Darkhovin in south-western Khuzestan province. Iran has said it would construct a 360 megawatt plant at the site.
"Now we need to think about the fuel for it," Tass quoted him as saying at a news briefing in Moscow. A spokesman for the Iranian embassy confirmed the comment.
Iran has been building its first nuclear power plant near the southern city of Bushehr, where Tehran says test operations could start later this year. Final deliveries of nuclear fuel by Russia arrived at the plant last month.

US-Russia nuclear deal upstages Iran
Asia Times Online

There was a time when Iran might have believed that a multipolar world order would be just and fair from the point of view of the "suppressed nations". If that notion wasn't shattered long ago, it was surely was last Friday when the director of Rosatom, Russia's federal agency for nuclear power, Sergei Kiriyenko, urgently flew to Washington on a one-day "working visit". Russia's nuclear czar was rushing to formalize a deal between Russia and the United States that Moscow has been keenly seeking for the past several years. From Washington's point of view, the timing couldn't have been better. Just as it seemed a biting UN Security Council sanctions regime against Iran wasimpossible to achieve, prospects are brightening. Tehran is not the only capital that must worry if the two heavyweights of the nuclear order begin hobnobbing. Many countries - such as India and South Africa - would also be affected by any redrawing of the nuclear fuel trade regime. But it is Iran which is in the firing line.

US Nuclear Plants Achieve Highest Generation in 2007, Says NEI Report

US-based nuclear power plants have posted all-time record highs in electricity production and efficiency in 2007, according to a report from nuclear industry lobbying group Nuclear Energy Institute.
According to preliminary figures, nuclear plants generated approximately 807 billion kilowatt-hours (kwh) of electricity in 2007, exceeding by more than 2% the previous record-high of 788.5 billion kwh of electricity set in 2004.
Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) said that the 104 nuclear plants operating in 31 states also achieved a record-setting average capacity factor, a measure of online availability of power. The 2007 average of 91.8% surpassed the 2004 record of 90.1%.

Spain nuclear lobby calls for 13 GW in new plants

Spain needs to build at least 13,000 megawatts worth of nuclear plants to achieve a feasible power generation mix by 2030, according to a study released by the country's nuclear lobby on Thursday.
Spain's eight existing nuclear power reactors each produce about 1,000 MW of electricity, but new reactors being built in other countries are much bigger.
Nuclear power has made a comeback in some countries, despite public fears arising from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, as the European Union strives to cut emissions of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide and reduce dependence on uncertain supplies of imported fuels like gas and coal.

Finland: Europe's newest nuclear plant
Olkiluoto 3: first nuclear reactor in Europe after Chernobyl

'I never get an answer when I ask Iran what they plan to do with the enriched uranium they produce,' EU foreign chief Javier Solana said on 30 January. While the Iranian president waits for the west, we take a Nordic diversion.
You can make out the rows of vines in the distance. Flanked by a dense forest, the deep green plants protrude into a clear blue sky. There is a soft breeze. It could almost be France. But the vines are shadowed by two imposing concrete structures and several tall red cranes. We are far from the sun-drenched paradise of Bordeaux. This is Olkiluoto, Finland’s largest nuclear power plant, and those vines produce wine with grapes heated from the plant’s waste coolant water. I’d usually try any kind of wine. Today, I’m resisting.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Some interesting facts and figures about nuclear waste

Here is an article revealing several facts about nuclear waste, arguing that nuclear waste storage is not a problem, at least not such big problem as coal powered plant emissions.


Published at thenewamerican.com (click on the link to go to original full story).

by Ed Hiserodit

How ironic that the nuclear wastes of concern to the letter-to-the-editor writer have become the most serious problem with nuclear power generation. Six decades ago the birth of nuclear power was praised for lowering the volume of waste products by a factor of 10,000,000. As Petr Beckmann pointed out in his classic The Health Hazards of NOT Going Nuclear, the nuclear wastes for an individual for a year is about the size of an aspirin tablet — a minuscule price to pay for inexpensive, reliable, safe electrical power. Yet when nuclear power is mentioned as a clean alternative today, the problem of wastes invariably arises.


The coal-fired plant also produces 30 pounds of sulfur dioxide per second (said to cause acid rain, amongst other problems) and as much nitrous oxide as 200,000 automobiles. Each year some 60,000 fellow citizens die early deaths from exposure to byproducts of coal combustion, according to studies by the Brookhaven National Laboratory, Divisions of Atmospheric Sciences and of Biomedical and Environmental Sciences. Note that unlike wastes from nuclear power plants, all products of coal combustion are either sent into the atmosphere or into landfills where they remain toxic forever.


We have addressed the 3 percent of spent fuel that can be considered extremely dangerous high-level waste, because of the intensity at which it releases its radiation. But we have also seen from the preceding table that the rapid decay of its components lessens its danger to relatively short periods of time. About 97 percent of spent fuel is not waste at all, but valuable uranium and plutonium that can and should be recycled for use as fuel. It seems odd that we are enjoined by “environmentalists” to recycle paper — a truly renewable resource — but be forbidden by government decree to recycle radioactive fuel that is many times more expensive than gold. After chemically removing the high-level wastes, the recoverable isotopes in spent fuels and their half lives are:
710 million years
4.5 billion years
24.4 thousand years†
6.6 thousand years†
13.2 years†
Note that except for plutonium-240 and -241, these recyclable isotopes have very long half-lives and they emit their radiation slowly — so slowly, in fact, that they can safely be handled with bare hands.


So why doesn’t the United States, like other countries possessing nuclear power, reprocess its fuel, removing the high-level radionuclides and reusing the uranium and plutonium isotopes? It is owing to the perceived — rather misperceived — dangers of the plutonium in the “spent fuel.”


A canister of waste that produces 30,000 watts of heat energy when removed (after one year) from a power plant cooling pond would have dropped to about 3,000 watts in 10 years, to 300 watts in 100 years, and to a barely detectable 3 watts in 1,000 years. We can see then that the radioactivity of the waste canister has decreased to 1/10,000th its initial value and is not likely to require the services of armed guards 24/7 for 100,000 years, as the more vocal anti-nuclear activists would have one believe.


The underlying cause of the nuclear-waste “problem” is an exaggerated fear of radiation. We have been conditioned for many years to accept the premise that even the slightest bit of radiation is dangerous — a premise that is not borne out by any experimental evidence.
It is certainly true that high doses of radiation can sicken or kill, and lower but still very substantial exposures can increase one’s propensity for developing cancer. But contrary to “common knowledge,” examination of the data shows that low levels of ionizing radiation often have a beneficial effect on human health known as hormesis — a fact that many scientists are striving to make public with little help from an uninformed and generally anti-nuclear news media. There is a very close parallel between ultra-violet (non-ionizing) radiation from exposure to sunshine and nuclear (ionizing) radiation. While extreme exposure to sunlight can lead to sunstroke and death, and lesser amounts cause sunburn and increase chances of skin cancer, moderate sunshine stimulates our bodies to create vitamin D that is necessary for good health.

For full article text, click here.

Nuclear news 7/02/2008

US Aid for Russia Linked to Iran

A U.S. program to keep Russian scientists from providing nuclear expertise to terrorists has funded research facilities that have helped Iran build its new nuclear power reactor, a congressional committee says, citing Russian sources.
The Bush administration expressed confidence that no projects under the program support nuclear work in Iran.
Rep. John Dingell, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, raised questions about the program and its possible link to Iran on a letter Wednesday to Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman. Dingell, D-Mich., cited information the committee had received from Russian sources.
"It is troubling that DOE (the Department of Energy) would subsidize or otherwise support Russian institutes providing technology and services to the Iranian nuclear program," according to the letter signed by Dingell and Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., chairman of the investigations subcommittee.

UniStar, AREVA-Bechtel Group Begin Nuclear Power Plants Plans

Unistar Nuclear Energy, a joint venture between Constellation Energy Group Inc. (CEG) and the EDF Group, began negotiations with a consortium led by Areva (CEI.FR) and Bechtel Group Inc. to develop plans that will form the basis of Unistar's proposed fleet of at least four nuclear power plants in the U.S.
Constellation, the Baltimore-based holding company for Baltimore Gas & Electric, said the Nuclear Regulatory Commission accepted for detailed review Unistar's partial combined license application for a proposed third reactor in Maryland.
Unistar said it plans to submit the remaining portions of the combined license application in March.

Iran: Nuclear power crucial

Nuclear power as well as alternative energy and fossil fuels are all options for Iran's growing energy needs.
Demand for electricity is likely to more than double in the next 10 years as more of the country is electrified and industry continues to grow, according to Iran Power Plants Projects Management's business development vice-president M A Dolatabadi.
While his company is not directly involved in the nuclear industry he believes that nuclear power must remain an option for Iran's growing energy demands.
Speaking to the GDN at the POWER-GEN Middle East conference and exhibition, he said that the country had to look at a wide range of options available to meet the needs of its expanding economy and the electrification of its entire rail network.

South Africa: Eskom Ponders Nuclear Plant Bids

ESKOM will decide by the middle of this year on a new nuclear power plant that will start generating electricity from 2016 and could cost about R120bn.
France's Areva and the US's Westinghouse Electric, the two companies that build nuclear power plants globally, submitted their bids to Eskom late last week. They are bidding not only to build the first new power plant, but also to provide up to 20000MW of nuclear power by 2025.
Eskom has said it wants to double its capacity, to 80000MW, over the next two decades, with nuclear power making up about half of the new capacity.

Taiwan's Three Nuclear Plants Generate "Record High" Power

Taiwan's three operating nuclear power plants generated a total of 38.96 billion kilowatt-hours (kwh) of electricity in 2007, with the capacity factor reaching 90.28 per cent, according to tallies released Wednesday by the Atomic Energy Council (AEC).
Both figures are the highest ever recorded by the power plants, AEC officials said.
In 2007, there were a total of 14 reportable events at the six reactor units belonging to the three power plants, including two trips, the officials said, adding that all these events were within "level 0, " meaning "no safety significance" on the international nuclear event scale introduced by the International Energy Agency.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Nuclear News 04/02/2008

Lukashenka gives his official OK to construction of nuclear power plant
Beloryskiye Novosti

Alyaksandr Lukashenka on January 31 signed a directive of the Security Council to authorize the construction of a 2,000-megawatt nuclear power plant in the country.
Under the directive, titled on the Development of Nuclear Power Industry in the Republic of Belarus, the first nuclear power unit will be started in 2016 and the second one in 2018.
According to earlier reports, experts currently consider two sites for the construction of the plant, with one of them located near Bykhaw, Mahilyow region, and the other between Horki and Shklow also in the Mahilyow region that has been affected worst by the Chernobyl nuclear accident along with the Homyel region.
The plant is estimated at $4 billion. It would generate some 15 percent of all energy consumed in the country.
The government is reportedly considering Westinghouse Toshiba, a US-Japanese venture, the French-German Areva Group, and Russia’s Atomstroiexport as major potential suppliers of equipment.
The construction of the plant was discussed by Mr. Lukashenka and officials of the Security Council this past month. The presidential press office said in its written comment that the discussion yielded an “ultimate political decision” to build the plant.

US nuclear power plants to get more Russia uranium

U.S. nuclear power reactors will be able to obtain more supplies of Russian enriched uranium for fuel, under a trade deal signed by the two countries late on Friday
The agreement will provide U.S. utilities with a reliable supply of nuclear fuel by allowing Russia to boost exports export to the United States while minimizing any disruption to the United States' domestic enrichment industry.

IAEA Concludes Follow-Up Mission to Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant

An IAEA follow-up fact-finding mission to the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant in Japan has concluded from the examination of the plant´s key safety areas that there was no significant damage to safety equipment from a strong earthquake last year.
"The first objective of the team has been to confirm that there appears to be no significant damage to the integrity of the plant", said Phillipe Jamet, whose team was able to view key internal components in the plant inaccessible during their first visit in August last year.
The IAEA team´s site visit followed three days of open and constructive discussions with Japanese regulatory officials, the plant´s operators, and other experts.
The mission concluded that significant data about the earthquake has been gathered and efforts to obtain remaining information are underway. Overall interpretation of all the data will still be necessary to reach a full understanding of the 16 July 2007 earthquake and to assess the possibility of future ones.

DTE Energy shuts down nuclear power plant after pumps malfunction

DTE Energy Co. has shut down its Fermi 2 nuclear power plant after two cooling water pumps stopped working.
DTE spokesman Scott Simons said Friday the utility is investigating, and won't restart the plant until it figures out the cause of the problems.
The Monroe Evening News reports crews manually stopped the nuclear fission process when it became clear the pumps stopped working. The company said all safety systems worked as designed during the shutdown at the Monroe County plant.

UK Nuclear: The power investment of 2008
International Herald Tribune

Now that the government in Britain has formally backed nuclear power as a desirable option for the country's electricity demands, industry analysts are sizing up investment opportunities in the segment with renewed vigor. A slew of stock recommendations among utility companies, engineering businesses and uranium miners suggest that nuclear could be the winning investment theme in the power sector this year.

In a move to secure energy supplies and tackle climate change, the government sanctioned the construction of six nuclear reactors in an energy white paper published in January. The plants, set to be operational by 2020, would replace an aging fleet of 19 power stations that supply around 18 percent of Britain's electricity needs. The cost of the construction program is estimated to be £75 billion, or $149 billion, over 20 years.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Nuclear News 1/02/2008

IAEA: No Major Damage to Quake-Hit Plant

There was no significant damage to a nuclear plant in northern Japan shuttered since last summer after it was hit by a strong earthquake, the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency said Friday.
A 12-member team from the International Atomic Energy Agency drew that conclusion after a four-day visit to Tokyo and the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear complex, which was rocked by a magnitude-6.8 quake July 16.
The quake, which killed 11 people and injured more than 1,000, caused malfunctions and leaks at the plant — the world's largest by capacity — and raised concerns about safety at Japan's nuclear power stations.

Russian-made floating nuclear power plants could be offered to ease SA tightness
Engineering News, South Africa

Russian technology could help South Africa to meet its medium-term energy needs, roughly in the period 2011 to 2015, by which time new baseload power stations planned by State-owned power utility Eskom should be in full operation.
Russia is in the middle of developing an approach to power generation which could help South Africa to temporarily bridge the generation gap currently afflicting the country. What the Russians are doing is building the world’s first floating nuclear power plant (FNPP) intended to provide power for terrestrial infrastructure.

Thailand opens study on possible nuclear plant

Thailand has launched a three-year study to decide whether the kingdom should build a nuclear power plant to meet its growing energy needs, a top energy official said Friday.
The study, which will cost about 1.8 billion baht (54.5 million dollars), will include a survey of potential sites, developing safety regulations and a public education campaign, said Kopr Kritaykirana, an adviser to the project.
The research is being undertaken by the new Nuclear Power Program Development Office, which was officially opened by the energy ministry on Thursday, he said.

Balts, Poland to meet on delayed nuclear plant plan

Economy ministers from the Baltic states and Poland are to meet next week to talk on delayed plans for a new nuclear power plant aimed at replacing one Lithuania has to shut down at the end of 2009.
Talks on the new plant have become bogged down due to Polish demands for a third of the power, though four partners are involved. Poland has linked its demand to agreeing to build a power link between its grid and that of Lithuania.
The Latvian Economy Ministry said in a statement that the economy ministers of the four countries would have a working meeting and get an update on the nuclear plant plans as well as the project for the power bridge to Poland and one to Sweden.

Turkey to invite bidders for nuclear power plant auction in February
The New Anatolian

Turkish Energy Minister Hilmi Guler said Thursday Turkey was set to make an official invitation in February for potential bidders in an auction to build the country's first nuclear power plant."We have finished necessary legal arrangements and we will invite bidders on February 21st," Guler told reporters after he received the members of RUWARD Youth Education Center based in Kuwait. Guler also underlined that Turkey would use nuclear technology solely for civilian purposes.