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   Author  Topic: It's not Nuclear power; its stupid humans  (Read 13399 times)

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Re:It's not Nuclear power; its stupid humans
« Reply #15 on: 2011-06-19 09:40:00 »
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Well image that .......



Russia Stands to Profit From Turn Away From Nuclear Power

Source: New York Times
Date: 2011.06.14

Jens Buettner/European Pressphoto Agency Construction of the Nord Stream natural gas pipeline near Lübesse, Germany. The pipeline is expected to bring Russian gas to Germany starting next year.

I.H.T. Special Report: Energy

The earthquake in Japan on March 11 did more than trigger a tsunami that caused the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl; it set off an anti-nuclear aftershock with Germany as its epicenter that is already reshaping the global energy landscape. And perhaps no country is as well positioned to benefit as Russia.

When Chancellor Angela Merkel initially said Germany would eliminate all nuclear power plants, she said most of the resulting energy deficit would be filled through increased efficiency, power from renewable sources, and a revamped electrical grid.

About a quarter of Germany’s power in 2010 was generated by nuclear plants having a total 20 gigawatts of installed nuclear capacity.

But when Mrs. Merkel asked Parliament last week to approve a series of laws to begin Germany’s “energy transformation,” designed to rid the country of nuclear power by 2022, she predicted that the country would need to use more fossil fuel, too — up to 20 gigawatts of it, twice what she had estimated days before.

Energy experts predict that most of that new fuel will be natural gas. “If we want to exit nuclear energy and enter renewable energy, for the transition time, we need fossil power stations,” Mrs. Merkel said.

It has been said before, but it was never more true, now that many countries are threatening to remove nuclear energy from the equation.

Switzerland decided a week before Germany to phase out its plants over the next three decades, and several members of the European Union, including Britain, have delayed their nuclear plans, ostensibly to see what lessons can be learned from the Japanese disaster.

In the meantime, natural gas is getting a lift. It is the alternative fuel of choice: readily accessible and available to meet rising global energy needs, less polluting than oil and coal, and relatively inexpensive.

This is excellent news for Russia, the second-largest natural gas producer in the world, after the United States, and suffering even worse economic times. “What was really beneficial for Russia is not what Germany decided, but the Fukushima event itself. Gas markets will tighten more,” said Jonathan Stern, director of natural gas research in the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies.

Last week, the International Energy Agency, the energy adviser to the world’s most industrialized countries, revised its forecast for global gas demand and predicted the beginning of the “golden age of gas” driven by, among other reasons, “lower growth of nuclear power.”

The I.E.A. said in a report that many governments had reviewed their plans after Fukushima, and that fewer plants would get their operation life extended and fewer new ones would be built.

Gas producers, global institutions, industry analysts and energy experts agree. Gas demand is on the rise, the glut built up during the global economic crisis is fast dissipating, and prices are bound to keep rising.

“We need more gas,” said the European energy commissioner, Günther Oettinger, in May. “After Berlin’s decision, gas will be a driver of growth.”

Gas demand, which before Fukushima was expected to increase 4.8 percent by 2020, is now expected to grow 9.5 percent, the I.E.A. estimated in its revised forecast.

Institutions, governments and individuals who want to reduce greenhouse gas emissions worry about gas’s rise, because it will replace cleaner nuclear power. Beyond the environmental concerns, some fear that growing dependence on Russian gas supplies will increase Moscow’s leverage over Western Europe.

In the short term, energy experts say, none of those concerns are likely to make a difference. The nuclear blackout will almost certainly translate into more Russian gas imports.

Russia is already Europe’s biggest gas supplier, exporting 120 billion cubic meters, or 4.2 trillion cubic feet, there in 2010, around a quarter of demand. And Russian gas will be pumped directly into Germany, bypassing Ukraine through the Nord Stream underwater pipeline once it is completed in 2012. The pipeline will have a capacity of 55 billion cubic meters per year, equivalent to around 10 percent of Europe’s total gas demand.

“There are few alternatives to buy gas for Europeans,” said Massimo Di Odoardo, a senior gas analyst at the energy consulting firm Wood Mackenzie. “Russia is very well placed considering Nord Stream comes online just when it’s needed.”

Extra revenue from rising prices will provide a cash infusion for Russia, already reaping a windfall from higher oil prices.

The geopolitical implications of the German nuclear phaseout are not clear. Germany was already Europe’s second-biggest gas consumer, at 87 billion cubic meters a year, and depends on Russia for just under 40 percent of its gas. Additional gas shipments to make up for the silenced nuclear plants will not significantly alter the strong dependence already in place, analysts say.

“Old member states are comfortable with Russia,” said Mr. Stern, referring to E.U. member states, “and don’t see this as a political threat. Whatever Europe thought of Russia, they learned Ukraine is too difficult to deal with as a transit state.”

Still, many analysts and officials on both sides of the Atlantic warn that Germany’s ties to Russia could spell trouble in the long run, if not because Russia is emboldened in Europe then because Germany could, at some point, find its energy interests incompatible with its Western allies’ political interests.

“The United States is attempting to extricate itself from Afghanistan and Iraq, and by the middle of the decade may be ready to assert itself in Central Europe,” wrote Stratfor, a geopolitical intelligence risk consulting firm based in Austin, Texas. “If this occurs, and Berlin’s dependency on Russian natural gas is at that point still increasing, its response to these strategic moves in its neighborhood could put Germany at odds with NATO allies.”

The finer details of Mrs. Merkel’s energy U-turn — in September, she had extended the life of nuclear plants eight to 14 years — are still under discussion.

Her decision followed a series of stinging political blows to her Christian Democratic Party and its partners in state elections, often to the benefit of the anti-nuclear Greens. There will be four more elections this year, and nuclear energy has come to the forefront of the German political debate.

After the Fukushima accident, Mrs. Merkel temporarily shut down seven reactors with a combined capacity of seven gigawatts and kept an eighth that was already off the grid idle. The government’s road map calls for the remaining nine reactors with a combined capacity of about 12 gigawatts to be shut down progressively, one in 2015, 2017 and 2019, three more in 2021, and the last three in 2022. Parliament’s approval is expected before the beginning of the summer break in July.

In the end, the path to a nonnuclear future could involve even more gas than leaders are acknowledging. For instance, the government said that efficiency measures, especially in buildings, would help cut electricity demand 10 percent by 2020, or about the equivalent to the nuclear plants already disconnected from the grid.

But that may be optimistic.

“Quite a large part could be achieved through efficiency, but we haven’t seen vast improvement in energy efficiency in the past few years,” said Anthony Froggatt, a senior fellow at the research organization Chatham House, based in London.

Additionally, laws are being proposed that promote more than doubling the current contribution of renewable energy, to 35 percent of electricity in 2020 from 17 percent, which would require a huge parallel investment in the electrical grid and in transmission lines to capitalize on the extra capacity.

Renewable energy improves security of supply and lowers the emissions of gases that cause global warming, but at generation costs from three to 10 times as expensive as fossil fuels. Its intermittent nature, dependent on whether the wind blows or the sun shines, is also a hurdle.

Grid stability is another challenge because renewable sources cannot be shut on or off at will or be relied upon to meet peak demand during a windless evening, for example.

No country has successfully replaced the reliability and affordability of already built plants that rely on nuclear power or fossil fuels.

Germany is a case in point. It is the world leader in installed renewable energy capacity, with about 55 gigawatts, mostly of wind. That is almost three times Germany’s capacity of nuclear or gas, yet renewable energy contributes significantly less to the grid than its rivals.
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Where there is the necessary technical skill to move mountains, there is no need for the faith that moves mountains -anon-

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Re:It's not Nuclear power; its stupid humans
« Reply #16 on: 2013-08-21 14:41:09 »
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Well the media swine are at the trough yet again face down in the swill. It's tough when the fossil fuel industry owns you I guess ?

My hat is off to "The Register" who have been so on the facts with this story and the scientific community around the world that is trying to get the truth out in spite of the mainstream media falsehoods.



OMG! New 'CRISIS DISASTER' at Fukushima! Oh wait, it's nothing. Again

Source: The register
Author: Lewis Page
Date: 2013.08.21


But hey, let's soil ourselves repeatedly anyway

The world's media is working itself into an unedifying state of hysteria (again) following the news that radioactive water has leaked from a holding tank at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, damaged two years back by a tsunami and earthquake which led to the death and injury of more than 20,000 people - though not a single one of those casualties resulted from radiation.

However the frightful death toll which actually happened was pretty much ignored by the world's media, which chose to focus on non-existent dangers that might have resulted from radioactive material escaping from the damaged reactors at Fukushima. In the end, the nuclear apocalypse failed to appear - the scientific consensus is that absolutely no health effects due to the Fukushima radiation will ever be detectable - and the journalists reluctantly gave up.

But now they're back. We hear from Reuters today:

    Japan's NUCLEAR CRISIS escalated to its WORST LEVEL since a massive earthquake and tsunami CRIPPLED the Fukushima plant more than two years ago ... nearby China said it was "SHOCKED" ... the DISASTER - the WORST nuclear accident since Chernobyl a quarter of a century earlier ... Water in the latest leak is so CONTAMINATED that a person standing close to it for an hour would receive FIVE TIMES the annual recommended limit for nuclear workers.

[Our caps. Just trying to help.]

'Nuclear crisis' - 'disaster' - FIVE TIMES the annual recommended limit? Surely this is it at last? The disaster is finally happening!

Well, no. The situation is this. The melted-down cores at the damaged reactors (the site is not "crippled", two reactors were undamaged and will return to service) are still hot - though much less hot than they were two years ago - and need to be cooled. This is done by pumping water through their buildings, then sucking it out again and putting it into holding tanks before purifying it to remove the radiation it picks up from the cores. Then it gets used again.

What has happened is that one of the holding tanks, containing water that had only been through one stage of purification, has sprung a leak and about 300,000 litres of water has got out. Almost all of this was contained by a backup dam which had been built around the tanks when they were set up (this is the nuclear industry, there is always a backup). However, "two shallow puddles" of the water got out of the dam via a rainwater drain valve which has since been sealed off.

The water is quite radioactive, and dose rates measured next to the puddles were 100 milliSieverts per hour. Nuclear powerplant workers, whose cancer rate is somewhat lower than in the general population (probably because they don't smoke so much) are allowed to sustain 50 millisievert in any one year in normal times and average doses across five years of 20 millisievert/yr.

However what Reuters haven't picked up on is that the high 100 milliSievert reading is for beta radiation only. The reading for gamma rays is only 1.5 milliSieverts per hour.

As we no doubt all recall from skool, beta radiation is not very penetrating: it can't get through human skin and it only travels a few feet through air. So you'd have to stand very close indeed to the two puddles, in them probably, for their beta rays even to reach you. A sturdy pair of wellingtons would have a good protective effect, if you should do this. As far as beta radiation is concerned, the only ways to seriously harm yourself with that water would be to get it on your exposed skin and leave it there for some time, or to drink it. This is also true of many domestic cleaning products.

The gamma hazard is noticeable, you wouldn't want to take up residence next to the pool of water, but you could work for days around it without breaching normal nuclear-worker health limits and the crews in the vicinity are being rotated regularly. Tepco is pumping all the water back into another tank pending purification, and segregating wet soil from the area. The firm told WNN that it has no indication so far of any water having got into a drainage channel or otherwise left the area.

So this is a pretty minor industrial-waste spill; thousands of more serious accidents occur every single day.

It's not global news. It's not national news. It would barely even be local news, in a sane world.

But it's not a sane world, and the media crusade against nuclear power rolls on
« Last Edit: 2013-08-21 14:45:21 by Fritz » Report to moderator   Logged

Where there is the necessary technical skill to move mountains, there is no need for the faith that moves mountains -anon-
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