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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
Number of posts: 29,798

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No biggy but "S. Korea Charges 100 Officials Over Nuclear Reactor Corruption"

S. Korea Charges 100 Officials Over Nuclear Reactor Corruption

SEOUL — South Korea has charged 100 officials and suppliers in its nuclear energy industry with corruption over faked safety certificates for nuclear reactor parts. The scandal, coming on the heels of the Fukushima disaster in Japan, has led to much criticism about how the nuclear industry is regulated.

Public prosecutors in South Korea have indicted at least 100 people after a months-long investigation into bribery in the nuclear power industry.

The scandal - South Korea's biggest in the nuclear industry - involved alleged collusion between parts suppliers and officials at state-run energy companies.

...A minister in the government office of policy coordination, Kim Dong-yeon, announced the charges Thursday. He said they investigated 10 year's worth of safety certificates for parts at South Korea's 20 operating nuclear reactors....


Obviously this wouldn't have happened if the nuclear industry weren't so terribly over-regulated.

When talking about projections GG's efforts are head-in-the-sand thinking

Head-in-the-sand in this case meaning that when one ignores all other relevant inputs to the calculus the output is destined to be garbage.

The fact of the matter is that conservative forecasts about the progress of alternative energy sources have consistently been, not only wrong, but grossly wrong. Reviewing the issue shows that high renewable growth scenarios have consistently proven to be far more accurate than conservative growth scenarios. (Under 'Fair Use' I've included the excerpt from the free downloadable International Renewable Energy Association's (IRENA) 2013 Global Futures Report. This 76 page non-technical report is
"a pioneering publication that provides access to the range of credible possibilities on the future of renewable energy. The report is based on interviews with over 170 leading experts around the world and the projections of 50 recently published scenarios. The report can serve as a tool for dialogue and discussion on future options, and compliments well the REN21 Renewables Global Status Report.

Available here:

So, in terms of historic credibility, the Greenpeace estimate has far more standing than the EIA.

(pgs 15-17) The world gets about 17–18% of its energy from renewables, including about 9% from “traditional biomass” and about 8% from “modern renewables.”a, b The “traditional” share has been relatively stable for many years, while the “modern” share has grown rap- idly since the late 1990s. During the 1990s, projections of renew- able energy that were considered most credible, for example by the International Energy Agency (IEA), foresaw shares of modern renewables reaching no more than 5–10% into the far future, given the policies and technologies existing at the time. As a result of the market, policy, and technology developments of the past 15 years, those early projections have already been reached.

In 2011, about 30 countries were getting 20% or more of their total energy from renewables, and some as high as 50%.c (The “total energy” metric counts electricity, heating/cooling, and transport.) Countries in this category include Austria, Brazil, Chile, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, the Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Uganda, and Uruguay. The European Union (EU) as a whole and the United States both stood at 12%. France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and several other countries were above 10%, and Japan was at 6%. Furthermore, in 2011, about half of all new electric power capacity added worldwide was renewable—as much capacity as fossil and nuclear combined. In interviews, industry experts emphasized that historical thinking and projections about renewable energy remaining a “fringe” techno- logy no longer make sense.

During the late 1990s and early 2000s, as renewable energy started to grow more rapidly than many had predicted, new sce- narios emerged that showed much higher long-term shares of renewables. Notable among these was a “Sustained Growth” scenario by the Shell oil company that showed 50% of global energy from renewables by 2050, a figure that shocked many at the time. The IEA also released a report, Energy to 2050: Scenarios for a Sustainable Future, that outlined a “Sustainable Development” scenario with a 35% share from renewables.

By the mid-2000s, a larger number of scenarios emerged showing 30–50% shares. Prominent among these was the first (2006) edition of the IEA Energy Technology Perspectives (ETP), which gave a set of “Accelerated Technology” scenarios for 2050. In these sce- narios, an intermediate case showed a 24% share, and the highest case showed a 30% share. A few years earlier, the German Advisory Council on Global Change (2004) had published its “Exemplary Path” scenario that projected a 50% share by 2050. And in 2007, the first edition of the Energy [R]evolution scenario by Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) likewise projected a 50% share by 2050

The most recent scenarios, published in 2010–2012, could be viewed in three main groups: “conservative,” “moderate,” and “high renewables.”5 See Figure 1 for the wide variation between groups. (See Annex 2 for a list of the recent global, regional, and national scenarios covered in this report, including full citations correspond- ing to scenario abbreviations used throughout the text, and see the online supplement, “Scenario Profiles Report,” for summaries of these scenarios.)

Conservative scenarios in the 15–20% range can be found pub- lished by oil companies, some industry groups, the IEA, and the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). For example, BP’s Energy Outlook 2030 (2012) and ExxonMobil’s Outlook for Energy: A View to 2040 (2012) both show an under-15% share by 2030–2040. The EIA (2011) shows 14% by 2035, and the IEA’s World Energy Outlook (WEO, 2012), in its “New Policies” scenario, shows 18% by 2035. Conservative viewpoints by oil and gas companies mirror such conservative scenarios. These companies continue to make state- ments such as “fossil fuels will continue to provide the majority of the world’s energy supplies for decades to come” (Chevron), and “oil’s preeminence in the global energy mix will remain unchallenged in the foreseeable future” (Total).

Moderate scenarios show long-term renewable energy shares in the 25–40% range. Two IEA examples are the IEA WEO (2012) “450” carbon-stabilization scenario, which shows a 27% renewable energy
16 share by 2035, and the IEA ETP (2012) “2DS” scenario, which shows a 41% share by 2050. The IPCC Special Report on Renewable Energy (2011) synthesized the results of over 160 climate-mitigation scenarios (most from 2009–2010) and found that over half of them project shares above 27% by 2050—a large group in the “moderate” category.7 (And many show very high absolute amounts of renewables, too, under high global energy demand scenarios; see Box 2.)

High-renewables scenarios project 50–95% energy shares of renewables by 2050. For example, the GEA Global Energy Assessment (2012) shows up to 75% in the highest of its “Efficiency” cases and a median share of 55%. The “ACES” scenario by the IEA multilateral program Renewable Energy Technology Deployment (2010) shows 55%. And among the group of 160 scenarios surveyed by the IPCC (2011), there are a number in the range of 50–80%. The biennial Greenpeace Energy [R]evolution scenario, which has become the most widely recognized and thorough projection made by renew- able energy advocates, shows 82%.a At the highest end, WWF (2011) shows a 95% share.8
The credibility of such high-renewables scenarios has increased over the years, following a long tradition of “100%” scenarios dating back to the 1970s by renewable energy advocates and visionaries. The difference is that now, given the scope of government policy targets and market growth in recent years, such high-renewables scenarios are grounded in growing present-day markets.9 (See Endnote 9 for further discussion of “credibility” in the context of scenarios.)

In interviews, most industry experts believed that the world could reach at least 30–50% shares of renewables in the long term. (See also Box 3 for a recent global goal of 30–35%.) And some experts advocated for 100% or near-100% futures. European experts cited considerably higher shares just for Europe (see following section), with many saying that Europe could attain 50–70% shares.10 (Also see following sections for more expert opinions based on individual sectors.)

Memo to sceptics of a low-carbon world – 'it's happening'

Memo to sceptics of a low-carbon world – 'it's happening'

You're pointing your camera in the wrong direction

You support your position with either false claims ("As long as economic growth is required, more energy has to be used") or you make self evident statements that aren't related to your actual "analysis" at all ("So long as the amount of renewable energy available falls short of the amount required for economic growth, fossil fuels will be used to close the gap - as well as to fuel the economic performance they fueled in the previous year".

Do you account for any of these points? No, you don't.

Note that the decoupling of CO2 emissions from GDP in the US and EU disproves your inexorable link between economic growth and more energy.

And the movement by China

How about the mass introduction of electric drive vehicles for personal transportation, estimated to be 7% of global market by 2020? Lots of economic growth potential resulting in a strong net reduction in energy use.

And with predictions 300GW of solar by 2020, don't you suppose that "economic growth" of this nature will ALSO result in net negative carbon emissions as we displace fossil fuels?

Where do you account for this

The difference between primary energy and final energy consumption?

Or this

Or this?

Or this?

Or the mass introduction of electric drive vehicles for personal transportation, estimated to be 7% of global market by 2020?

Predictions are for 300GW of solar by 2020, so what about this?

The type of simplistic modeling you are doing is meaningless.

California To Grapple “Indefinitely” With Nuclear Hangover

California To Grapple “Indefinitely” With Nuclear Hangover

Meltdowns have almost no probability of occurring, we’re told incessantly; nuclear energy is not only cheap but safe. So, there are currently 434 active reactors and 147 permanent shutdown reactors in the world, for a total of 581 reactors. Four of them have melted down so far – one at Chernobyl and three at Fukushima. The meltdown probability, after six decades of history, is 4 out of 581, or 1 out of every 145. If 1 out of every 145 pedestrians got hit by a car, no one would ever cross a street until we’d come up with safer crossings.

The costs of a major nuclear accident are catastrophic and come due for generations (plural!). But there are also the routine costs when reactors stop producing revenues while the expenses for decommissioning pile up. These costs are largely unknown and haven’t been priced in. It’s just easier to extend the lifespan of the reactors.

So California regulators are grappling this week with how much it will cost to decommission the scandal-plagued San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station – artfully baptized SONGS. It sits by the beach in northern San Diego County; 7.4 million people live within 50 miles. It’s supposed to be able to withstand an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.0 on the Richter scale. But a fault has since been discovered nearby, capable of producing 8.0 earthquakes. Ten times more powerful than a 7.0 quake. San Onofre is also protected against tsunamis, much like Fukushima Daiichi.

San Onofre has had by far the highest number of safety complaints in the US, as measured by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s “Allegations from On-Site Sources” – employees and contractors. The plant’s 171 complaints from 2007 through 2012 blew away the next worst in line, the 115 complaints at the Susquehanna plant in Pennsylvania. On the low end were the 6 complaints at the Kewaunee plant in Wisconsin, which was also shut down this year.

The current nightmare bubbled up in January 2012 when an alloy tube in Unit 3’s steam generator broke and hot pressurized radioactive water leaked out...


Nuclear power: why US nuclear 'renaissance' fizzled and plants are closing

Nuclear power: why US nuclear 'renaissance' fizzled and plants are closing

A funny thing happened on the way to a nuclear renaissance: For the first time in 15 years, operating nuclear plants are being forced to close, and energy companies are scuttling plans for new plants and upgrades to existing ones.

In addition to four closures of nuclear plants so far this year, two other US nuclear plants are at a crossroads, and dozens more at risk of early retirement.

It points to the thwarted promise of a nuclear industry that 10 years ago seemed on the verge of revival, until derailed by cheap energy alternatives, listless energy demand, and renewed safety and regulatory concerns, especially after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.

... both public opinion and market forces are working against the renaissance that industry backers have been predicting. This week, a former chair of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission called for shutting down the Indian Point nuclear power plant near New York City and the Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth, Mass., citing safety concerns.

Severe accidents have happened and they will happen,” said former NRC chair Gregory Jaczko...


Nuclear Power Through the Fukushima Perspective

Nuclear Power Through the Fukushima Perspective
10/09/2013 10:58 am


Kan, at the event Tuesday in Manhattan, told of how he had been a supporter of nuclear power, but after the Fukushima accident, which began on March 11, 2011, said, "I changed my thinking 180-degrees, completely." He said that in the first days of the accident it looked like an "area that included Tokyo" and populated by 50 million people might have to be evacuated.

"We do have accidents such as an airplane crash and so on," said Kan, "but no other accident or disaster" other than a nuclear plant disaster can "affect 50 million people... no other accident could cause such a tragedy."


Jaczko said that the Fukushima disaster exploded several myths about nuclear power including those involving the purported prowess of U.S. nuclear technology. The General Electric technology of the Fukushima nuclear plants "came from the U.S.," he noted. And, it exploded the myth that "severe accidents wouldn't happen." Said the former top nuclear official in the United States: "Severe accidents can and will happen."

And what the Fukushima accident "is telling us is society does not accept the consequences of these accidents," said Jaczko, who was pressured out of his position on the NRC after charging that the agency was not considering the "lessons" of the Fukushima disaster. In monetary cost alone, Jaczko said, the cost of the Fukushima accident is estimated at $500 billion by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.


"Primary energy" is mostly unused heat by-product of combustion

It is therefore energy we do not need to replace if the production is from a non-thermal source of generation. You'll notice that this look based on end user consumption is a distinctly different view of the matter.

From IRENA's REN21, 2012

Now note the decoupling of CO2 emissions from GDP in the US and EU.

And the movement by China

I don't know what policies the world will effect in the next 25 years, but there is no basis for saying our future course can be explicated by simply looking at the graphs you are drawing.

Ex-NRC Chair: Emer. Plans Won’t Protect Res. from Rad. - Indian Point Nuclear Plant Should Be Closed

Former NRC Chair: Emergency Plans Won’t Protect Residents from Radiation, And Indian Point Should Be Closed

Gregory Jaczko: Shut Indian Point down
By Roger Witherspoon

The former head of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission said yesterday that emergency plans for a catastrophic event at the Indian Point nuclear power plant are not designed to ensure that residents will escape unhealthy doses of radiation and it would be best if the plant closes down.

Gregory Jaczko, who led the five-member Commission during the triple meltdown of Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear station and resigned last year after intense clashes with the industry and the other four Commissioners, said in a wide-ranging interview that:

- Emergency plans for Indian Point only teach officials how to make the best decisions in a bad situation and minimize the extent of contamination for those within 10 miles of the Hudson River site. The plans will do nothing to protect the 21 million people living within 50 miles, including New York City, northern New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania, and western Connecticut.
- With the exception of Allison M. Macfarlane, his replacement as NRC Chair ( http://bit.ly/YsPqgF ), the four commissioners “were brought onto the Commission because they were more interested in looking at the impact of regulations on the industry rather than on the possible impact on the safety of the public.”
- The agency’s risk assessment, which undergirds its regulatory structure and determines what practices are safe, is seriously flawed because of a basic assumption that worst case scenarios cannot happen. As a result, there is little thought given to the consequences of accidents – even though it is certain that some will occur.
- Because the consequences of a meltdown at Indian Point are incalculably catastrophic, it would be best if the plant were closed.

Much more at http://spoonsenergymatters.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/former-nrc-chair-emergency-plans-wont-protect-residents-from-radiation-and-indian-point-should-be-closed/

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