New testing rules benefit oil producers

One of the odd circumstances that arises out of extracting, transporting and marketing a commodity in high demand is that overall industry profits can increase as an indirect result of experiencing a scary accident that destroys a portion of a now infamous small town and kills nearly four dozen people. One predictable response to such […]

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NEI Small Reactor Forum Report – Part 1

The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) hosted its biannual Small Reactor Forum on February 25, 2014. The agenda for the one day event included six well-organized sessions with presentations from three small reactor vendors, the industry trade group, the regulatory agency, and several outside observers with a significant interest in the technology from a variety of […]

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Smoking gun: AEC told President Kennedy why coal industry was opposed to nuclear energy

It’s been quite a while since my last smoking gun post on Atomic Insights. It may be time to revive the series to remind nuclear energy advocates to follow the money and know their opponents. In the battle for hearts, minds and market share it is always useful to know why vocal opposition exists, but […]

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Fuel resiliency will be part of quadrennial energy review

During his speech at the National Press Club on Wednesday, February 19, Energy Secretary Moniz made a comment about fuel resiliency that is worthy of discussion, especially as it might provide another opportunity for nuclear energy advocates to make the case for the importance of continuing to operate, develop and deploy our technology. Dr. Moniz […]

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ExxonMobil, XTO, and climate change strategy

On January 24, 2014, the The Society of Environmental Journalists and the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program presented a panel discussion titled The Year Ahead in Environment and Energy. I found out about it via this tweet from Andy Revkin: Video: Enviro journalists on Keystone, gas boom, western drought, much more at […]

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On Germany, coal and carbon

By Paul Lorenzini Germany’s nuclear phase-out has an obvious and unavoidable consequence: they will burn more fossil fuels and emit more carbon. They may succeed in lowering carbon emissions using some artifact (comparisons to some historical year) but only a fool would contend that their carbon emissions will be not be higher than they otherwise […]

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Taking the bloom off of the nuclear rose

Yesterday I came across a New York Times front page article from July 7, 1971 titled Nation’s Energy Crisis: Nuclear Future Looms. It is the second article in a three part article on the energy crisis that was capturing America’s attention in 1971 – two years before the Arab Oil Embargo. The discovery knocked me […]

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Russia using oil wealth to finance nuclear exports

Russia has announced plans to lend Hungary $14 billion at below market rates to finance the construction of additional nuclear energy production units at the existing Paks nuclear power station. The announcement is one more piece of evidence showing that Russia continues to diversify its income by exporting nuclear power stations to as large a […]

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Chinese plan to dominate nuclear market worldwide

A California-based correspondent shared the following vignette to a private email list early this morning. An aside — had dinner with a Stanford biz prof teaching entrepreneurship. His 15 Chinese students were at the table too (big table). A few spoke English. One is international marketing head for China Nuclear Power Engineering Company — largest […]

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Antarctic misadventure failed to plan for resilience

I’ve been pondering the misadventures of the Akademik Shokalskiy for several days, thinking about the difference in result between an excursion planned on the cheap by people who depend on things going smoothy and a voyage planned by people who included contingencies and had access to more capable technology. In the summer of 1994, the […]

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Icebreaker saved by fossil fuels. Nuclear might have been better

Just before Christmas 2013, a diesel-powered, ice-capable Russian research vessel named MV Akademik Shokalskiy, which was carrying scientists studying climate change, got stuck in the Antarctic ice. The scientists on the ship were not in any immediate risk or suffering any hardship conditions; they had plenty of fuel and supplies. The scientists have been evacuated […]

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GE CTO describes his company’s focus on oil and gas technology

Bill Loveless from Platts Energy Week recently interviewed Mark Little, GE’s chief technology officer, about the company’s interests in the oil and gas extraction sector. Loveless and Little discussed GE’s planned investments into an Oklahoma-based research center that will be the first GE technology development laboratory that is focused on a single business sector. Mark […]

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