1. Ontario Nuclear Power’s paranoia seems to have been justified with the decision to cancel the new reactors at Darlington. Pow! Pow! Another Red Shirt down.

  2. Rod,

    Proof reading.

    Please replace Candian by Canadian

    Dr. Jeremy Whitlock has been publishing The Candian Nuclear FAQ

  3. And here too:

    the September 2013 issue of the Candian Nuclear Society Bulletin, Vol 34, No. 3

  4. Rod,

    and also replace nuclear by nukular … then you are good to go !!!

    I really should not spot your typos with all the fantastic work you do ….

  5. All Candus are working for the first time in 15 years … Talk about resilience. One day, all German reactors will be back on line, at the same time.

    I am convinced that when German companies start moving abroad in search of cheap electricity and that the EU will fine Germany for ‘disguised’ subsidies, Merkel will have to change her stance again on nuclear.

  6. I wish I could forget about hydro.

    Its Huge: Hydroelectricity supplies an estimated 20% of the world’s electricity and accounts for more than 85% of electricity from renewable sources.( http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110801134733.htm )

    Its not that dependable (capacity factory comes in at about 50 percent ( http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/electricity_generation.cfm ) ).

    It has safety issues. ( Banqiao Dam ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banqiao_Dam )).

    Albeit downgraded, It has significant and unresolved GG contribution issues.

    It has VERY significant land use and habitat destructing issues.

    Dams and reservoirs are said to be the leading cause of aquatic extinctions:

    Freshwater species and ecosystems are among the most imperilled. Dams are a principal threat to freshwater diversity and that threat is largely mediated through loss of habitat frequently involving modifications to the natural flow regime and to blockage of migrations ( http://intranet.iucn.org/webfiles/doc/archive/2001/IUCN850.pdf )

    In the United States, about 20% of fishes are extinct or imperiled… ….Little debate occurs among fisheries professionals about the causes of imperilment and extinctions of southwestern fishes. Most frequently mentioned causes are construction of dams, loss of physical habitat, habitat degradation, chemical pollution, overexploitation, and introduction of nonindigenous species. Dam construction and regulation probably had the greatest adverse effect on native fishes of southwestern rivers, while the effects of excessive groundwater pumping have imperiled many spring systems and their associated fauna. ( http://cpluhna.nau.edu/Biota/fishes.htm )

    Yangtze river dolphin driven to extinction ( http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2007/aug/08/endangeredspecies.conservation )

    Ive gotten to where I now cringe when I hear the words “renewable” and/or “sustainable” as they usually seem to involve unrealistic hype and advancing some unseen if not purposely ignored environmental disaster.

    1. BTW: The wiki on the Baldwin Hills Reservoir Failure is an interesting read. Ive read a few assessments on subsidence in the Louisiana delta region. Ive also seen the reports critical of fracking. I didnt ever notice this case until now, with documentation going so far back.

      From the outset it was clear that ground faulting, including the aseismic fault movements that destroyed the reservoir, were probably related to the many feet of ground subsidence which had occurred a half mile west of the reservoir over decades of oil extraction in the Inglewood field….

      ….Following the discovery in 1970 by geologist Douglas Hamilton of faulting and surface seepage of oilfield waste brines along the fault which traversed and extended south of the reservoir, Hamilton and Meehan concluded that oilfield injection for waste disposal and improved recovery of oil, a new technology at the time, was a significant cause of the failure, triggering hydraulic fracturing and aggravating movements on a fault traversing the reservoir even on the day of the failure.

      A long cold smoking gun of geologic hazards related to petroleum extraction? I think probably so.

      From Science 1971 !!! :

      Ground Rupture in the Baldwin Hills ( http://www.stanford.edu/~meehan/la/pubs/pubbaldw.pdf )

      Its been a mistake to quickly discount the geologic implications of petroleum extraction and mass distribution changes related to warming.

      That reminds me also of another dam and reservoir issue. Induced seismicity – has been a culprit in a few disasters. The largest being the Sichuan that killed around 80000.

    2. Hydro, long-term is the cheapest form of electricity there is. Like any other energy source it has it’s problems. It’s not really an option going forward though, especially in the west where 50-80% of exploitable reserves are already tapped. Even in china which has the worlds largest hydro resources they’re likely past the halfway point right now. Most of the worlds untapped hydro resources are in africa and south America.

      Here in the USA we make about 275twh per year of hydro. We could maybe push that 350-400 if we wanted to but it’s not going to make much of a dent in our 4,000+ twh consumption.

  7. This is not just cute and clever but also serves as a promotion of nuclear power. Few people can summarize in such a short piece what is going on and still paint the picture of the irony that Ontario’s success may just be a passing phase. It points out the tragedy and missed opportunity that has taken place and how the industry may not recover if we let its accomplishments go unnoticed.

  8. When the Discovery and Science Channels have shows like “Strip the City” and “MegaEngineering” that say Toronto is lit by Niagara Falls in a full feature about it and pass up mentioning anything about nuclear, seems to me that someone at Ontario Power’s been asleep at the public relations switch.

  9. In the unintentional comedic attempts department the anti nukes are going to pull out all the stops tomorrow in a furious twitter storm. Whats got them all riled up? The mysterious much prophesied yet impossible spent fuel cataclysm. RT (of course) is providing the backdrop.

    Fukushima readies for dangerous operation to remove 400 tons of spent fuel ( http://rt.com/news/fukushima-operation-spent-fuel-618/ )

    In the worst-case scenario, the pool could come crashing to the ground, dumping the rods together into a pile that could fission and cause an explosion many times worse than in March 2011.

    “The worst-case scenario could play out in death to billions of people. A true apocalypse, ” Consolo said.

    1. @John Tucker

      What will happen when the antinuclear activists cry wolf one more time without a visit from the wolf? We need to be ready with our own storm of people with questioning attitudes and technical understanding of the options.

      1. And al-Jazeera will also have an incentive to badmouth nuclear, an incentive called “Qatari LNG”.

        1. Except that sooner or later, Qatari like UEA and the Saoudis will start to use nuclear to escape from the Export Land Model and offset as much as possible of their internal consumption with nuclear : http://www.theoildrum.com/node/3018

          Maybe they’re already starting to change their nuclear stance :
          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/10399576/Qatar-and-Kuwait-in-talks-with-EDF.html “Qatar and Kuwait ‘in talks with EDF over Hinkley Point nuclear stake”

    2. The internet seem to be boiling with doomsday scenarios related to the spent fuel transfer. The RT article refers to the radioactivity of cesium 137 contained in the Unit 4 reactor. (The reactor that had the core removed shortly before the earthquake.)

    3. This apocalyptic scenario has been trotted out every few months since 2011. Russia Today (rt.com) is especially fond of it. Most of the major doom-criers of the anti-nuclear movement have written about it (some several times) as well.

      Russia Today is *very* anti-nuke, with one notable exception: they are lavish in their praise of Russian nuclear technology.

      There’s also a fellow who writes that if there’s ever a solar storm and/or CME on the order of the one in 1859, every single nuclear reactor will become an “instant Chernobyl”. I haven’t kept up with him, so he’s probably claiming “instant Fukushima” these days.

      Yes, indeed: Billions Will Die! But not from nuclear mega-super-duper-hyper catastrophes.

      1. On a related note, I have just discovered that my wife maintains within her household sewing box enough straight pins to permanently blind 500 infants!

        I swear this is true!

  10. Is this true from William Tucker :

    China just passed the United States on total electricity generated

    That is some news …

      1. The anti nukes are making a point of highlighting the normal precautionary shutdown of Dungeness nuclear power station because of electrical line damage.

        Dungeness nuclear power station shuts down following hurricane-strength winds ( http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/weather/10409160/Dungeness-nuclear-power-station-shuts-down-following-hurricane-strength-winds.html )

        That windmill could have easily killed someone. Another small wind turbine had to be dismantled in the storm by emergency personnel. God knows how many windmills had issues in Europe. But the big news no one is that interested in is that a tree fell in Hounslow, west London and ruptured a gas line creating a bomb that killed at least two and destroyed three houses.

        UK storm: Two dead following explosion caused by ruptured gas main in west London ( http://metro.co.uk/2013/10/28/uk-storm-houses-collapse-after-gas-explosion-caused-by-tree-falling-in-west-london-4163605/ )

        But energy reality is not as titillating as nuclear fear.

        1. Two people have died here yesterday repairing or checking for storm damage to a wind turbine. Four men were on it when a fire started, two could save themselves, two could not. So horrible. Turbine on fire, in Dutch.

          1. From the video it doesn’t even look like rescue and firefighting equipment could do anything, much less reach it. No automatic fire suppression even?

          2. From the video it doesn’t even look like rescue and firefighting equipment could do anything, much less reach it.

            No, they almost never can. It’s too high for most firefighting equipment. The only thing that can be done is to watch it burn — perhaps shoot a video for You-tube. Nevertheless, the fire crews still need to show up. Their job is to chase down and extinguish all of the little fires that are started from burning debris that is carried on the wind as it falls to earth.

            No automatic fire suppression even?

            How are you going to get water up there? These turbines are taller than typical water towers, and you’re certainly not going to stick a water tower on each turbine. Thus, you’ll need to pump the water up, which requires power, which probably isn’t available because of the fire.

            I suppose that some sort of gas-based fire suppression system could be used, but (1) it would add additional expense to an already capital-intensive form of power generation and (2) the fire system itself would introduce a new hazard for workers.

          3. To John Tuckers complaint about no english media, I found some mention of it in english, here and here.
            They seem to be meant more for english speakers with a connection to the Netherlands, no mainstream english media.

          4. More in English:

            Two dead after Dutch turbine fire ( http://renews.biz/52979/two-dead-after-dutch-turbine-fire/ )

            And I dont know if this outlet ins anti wind but they seem to think this is a rather common occurrence:


            The wind industry has long claimed that wind turbine fires are rare. But after creating a Google alert for the term “wind turbine fire,” ECM has received clips from media outlets around the world documenting that in fact, wind turbine fires are far more common than the industry would have prospective buyers believe.

            Vestas has been plagued by wind turbine fires in the past. The company blamed a 2011 wind turbine fire on a brake problem. In 2012, a Vestas V-112 wind turbine in Germany caught fire; Vestas blamed the blaze on a loose connection that caused an arc flash. Also in 2012; a similar arc fire occurred in a Vestas V-90 turbine in Spain during maintenance; in addition a Vestas turbine collapsed in Ireland. Then in April 2013, a Vestas V-80 wind turbine in Ontario, Canada, burst into flames. ( http://eastcountymagazine.org/node/14273 )

            Arcing seems to be blamed a lot. I wonder if its not a combination of mechanical and electrical problems – like part failure\friction too.

            I think there is a bit of media suppression going on. This story should probably be spread even by pro wind advocates as it appears to be a significant safety issue that would factor into repair decisions and planning.

  11. I dont know how many of you remember the solar groupies cheering on the Juno mission ( a solar – low powered imaging/passive field research mission to Jupiter) as being some kind of ludicrous anti nuclear space proving mission.

    Well on a recent slingshot flyby through earths shadow the damn thing broke of course and it looks like solar power was an issue:

    Juno Status Report ( http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/juno/news/juno20131023.html#.Um_33bMjulM )

    Hopefully they will fix it soon. Should have used nuclear power.

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