24 Aug 2010

Hinkley petition and Oldbury's extension plans

The deadline on the petition against nuclear new build at Hinkley Point in Somerset has been extended to the end of October. Please encourage friends and others to sign the online petition or print off petition forms to collect signatures: www.stophinkley.org\PETITION.htm

Photo: new photoshop from Shepperdine group of the cooling towers proposed at Oldbury for the new nuke

A new leaflet has also recently been produced re nuclear. You can download a copy from No Need for Nuclear - see: http://www.stophinkley.org/NoNeed4Nuclear.pdf

I got a paper copy as well - sent to all councillors - the hope is to get folk to write to their MP re Early Day Motion 557. Here is my note which I sent to Neil, with a copy of edm 557: "You will no doubt be aware of this motion. It is not an anti-nuclear edm but asks for an inquiry into whether nukes are needed. Amazingly the government has never carried out an assessment of future power demands. Indeed January 2008 the Government said nukes would be necessary to satisfy demand, in November last year they announced that 10 nukes would be built then in December acknowledged they had made no long-term assessment of future electricity needs! This is a wholly perverse way of making policy. We must assess first whether these billions of pounds of nuclear infrastructure are really needed. Cllr Philip Booth"

Do please also write to Neil Carmichael.

Oldbury update

Meanwhile, as noted before, the UK’s only remaining operating Magnox nuclear power stations, Oldbury and Wylfa, are looking at operating well beyond their current scheduled closure dates - and those dates are years after the originally planned dates. Oldbury, on the banks of the River Severn in Gloucestershire, 16 miles from Stroud, is currently scheduled to close down in June 2011, but site manager Joe Lamonby told the recent stakeholder group meeting, that Angela Paine, a Stroud Green party member attended, that it is likely there will still be enough fuel to operate one of the plant’s two reactors beyond that. Indeed he apparently seemed excited by the prospect.

Regular blog readers will know I have very real concerns about the serious risks involved in extending still further the length of times these dinosaurs are operating - see recent post re graphite problems here.

Joe apparently told stakeholders that there would not be enough fuel to continue running both reactors - Magnox fuel is no longer being manufactured - but spare fuel from one reactor could be put into the other to keep it operating. He also talked about the new mini-stores of nuke waste that can be more easily shifted around the country - it is clear the waste problem is no where near sorted - see Angela's comments here and the concerns re transporting nuke waste on trains here.

Magnox North’s other operating station, Wylfa in North Wales, is formally scheduled for closure in December 2010, but like Oldbury, could well operate to 2012 with the NII’s consent. The plant is currently in the process of applying for extended operation beyond 2010. If the regulator gives it permission to continue, Magnox North is hoping to be able to operate the plant for at least two more years. A decision from the NII is expected in the autumn. See more at N-former 12th Aug 2010.

See also previous posts on nuclear by clicking on label below and scrolling down - it includes recent posts like PV now cheaper than nuclear, the Government's delay on nukes and about the need to stop subsidies.

1 comment:

Philip Booth said...

British nuclear power operator Magnox North wants to run one of its two 220-megawatt (MW) Oldbury units near Bristol until mid-2012. Magnox North is awaiting a decision from the Nuclear Directorate (ND), part of Britain's Health and Safety Executive (HSE), to extend the operating time of its Oldbury 2 reactor until June 2011 to bring it in line with the second unit. After the verdict has been given, the operator will decide which reactor will form part of an extension request until mid-2012.

Reuters 23rd Aug 2010