• Wed, May 24 2017

    Nominations for NRC Commissioners

    Yesterday, the President announced his intent to fill two vacancies at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The White House press release names Annie Caputo, currently serving as senior policy advisor for Chairman John Barrasso (R-WY) on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee to a seat with a term expiring June 30, 2021. As stated in the announcement, “Ms. Caputo has more than 20 ...read more
    • Thu, May 18 2017

    Challenging EPA’s legal authority set strict limits on low dose radiation

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been seeking input on regulations that should be repealed, replaced or modified. The comment window opened on April 13 and closed on May 15. In response to the request, members of Scientists for Accurate Radiation Information (SARI) prepared a document containing scientifically supported arguments for eliminating regulations that contain strict limits ...read more
    • Mon, May 15 2017

    Nuclear fear has been purposely created. It can be overcome

    Jon Talton of the Seattle Times published a piece in reaction to the recent kerfuffle about a structural collapse at an old, wooden beam-reinforced tunnel roof at the Hanford site in eastern Washington. The tunnel has been the storage location for equipment and obsolete components that were used several decades ago when the site was producing materials for the U.S. nuclear weapons program. The equipment ...read mor...
    • Mon, May 15 2017

    Commercial supplies of HALEU needed to enable advanced reactors

    Jake DeWitte and Caroline Cochrane, the cofounders of Oklo, a start up company that is developing a 1-2 MWe nuclear reactor-based power system for remote areas, have been credited with drawing attention to a problem that can be solved by a government policy decision. “Nearly all advanced reactors have a need for low enriched fuel greater than 5%,” Cochrane recently wrote in an email. Oklo is the ...read more
    • Mon, May 15 2017

    Nuclear Provisions of S. 512, Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act (NEIMA)

    The Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act (NEIMA), S. 512 , is a draft bill reported out of the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee on March 22 that directs both the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and U.S. Department of Energy to make significant changes in the way they treat nuclear energy technology development. While it is not an appropriation and includes no designated ...read more
    • Sat, May 13 2017

    Vogtle 3 and 4 construction continuation agreement through June 3

    Georgia Power announced that it has reached an agreement – “in principle” – with Westinghouse to transition Vogtle 3 & 4 project management to Southern Nuclear and Georgia Power. The agreement will not be fully implemented until after the current engineering, procurement and construction contract has been rejected in Westinghouse’s bankruptcy proceeding. The transition agreement ...read more
    • Thu, May 11 2017

    Emirates Nuclear Announces Construction Completion And Operational Delay For First Nuclear Unit

    Mohamed Al Hammadi, Chief Executive Officer of ENEC Photo credit: ENEC Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) confirmed last week that it had completed construction for its first of four large nuclear units. It also announced that the initial operation of the plant will be delayed until sometime in 2018 to allow sufficient time to gain more operational experience and obtain national and international ...read mo...
    • Fri, May 5 2017

    People’s Climate March: Why Nuclear Advocates Felt Excluded And Chose To Stay Away

    People’s Climate March includes opposition to biggest clean energy opportunities On a blisteringly hot April day in Washington, D.C., some people and organizations interested in addressing climate change gathered and marched with signs and chants. Notably, the event excluded the scientists, engineers, clean air advocates, environmentalists and clean energy technologists who recognize that nuclear ...read more
    • Thu, May 4 2017

    GA Power And Westinghouse Extend Temp Vogtle Nuclear Plant Construction Agreement Through May 12

    Some of 5,000+ on site workers Late Friday evening, Georgia Power issued a terse press release . Thousands of people who have been tensely anticipating a crucial decision regarding the fate of the Plant Vogtle expansion project cannot stop worrying yet. We will now mark our calendars for May 12 as the next deadline for announcing a decision about whether the massive project will be continued through ...read more
    • Sat, Apr 29 2017

    GA Power announces a decision deferral until May 12

    Vogtle Unit 4 is running about 6 months behind Unit 3. Last night, GA Power issued a terse press release stating that it will continue working on the detailed project assessment needed before it can decide whether or not to continue trying to complete Vogtle units 3 and 4. The new date is Friday, May 12. More details are available at GA Power And Westinghouse Extend Temp Nuclear Plant Construction ...read more
    • Thu, Apr 27 2017

    Above board competition in energy markets finally emerging. API Ohio pushing for nuclear shutdowns

    The Ohio division of the American Petroleum Institute (API Ohio) recently issued a press release urging members of the “Ohio legislature to reject legislation that would subsidize nuclear power companies, and called on corporate supporters of the legislation to stop misleading Ohio consumers with false information on the economic and environmental consequences of shuttering nuclear power plants ...read more
    • Thu, Apr 20 2017

    Donald Hoffman – Changes at EXCEL Services Corporation and within the nuclear energy industry

    A couple of weeks ago, I spoke with Donald Hoffman, the founder, president and CEO of EXCEL Services Corporation (EXCEL) . Hoffman is an active and visible leader within the nuclear industry. He’s a past President of the American Nuclear Society (ANS); his company has been a major exhibitor at ANS events for several decades – people who have attended any national ANS meeting since the 1990s ...read more
    • Mon, Apr 17 2017

    Implications Of South Korean Presidential Election On Its World Class Nuclear Industry

    Inside the U. S. nuclear energy industry, there is a high level of respect and admiration – along with a barely suppressed tinge of jealousy – for the way that the Republic of Korea (aka South Korea) has steadily developed its world class nuclear power plant manufacturing and construction industry. Starting from zero operating plants in the mid 1970s, South Korea now has 28 units that reliably supply ...read more
    • Thu, Apr 13 2017

    Competitive battle for electricity market share in Pennsylvania. Price wars harm customers in long run.

    The Beaver Valley (PA) Times has published an important article titled Group forms to oppose bailout of struggling nuclear power industry . That article needs to be read and retained by those of us who believe that existing nuclear plants are important pillars of the U.S. electricity supply network that is often called “the grid.” The article, if read with a critical eye and an understanding ...read mor...
    • Tue, Apr 11 2017

    Did the Nuclear Renaissance in the U.S. falter because people ignored lessons from the First Atomic Age?

    During the ANS Student Conference 2017 in Pittsburg, PA, a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison made the effort to find me and introduce himself. Among several other topics, he wanted to exchange thoughts about an article that I first published more than 22 years ago. The student indicated his interest in becoming an atomic entrepreneur or finding other ways to enable a more entrepreneurial ...read more
    • Tue, Apr 11 2017

    Terrestrial Energy making progress towards commercializing Advanced Small Modular Reactor

    Simon Irish, CEO of Terrestrial Energy, provides progress report to SMR and Advanced Reactor Summit Simon Irish, the Chief Executive of Terrestrial Energy , provided a project update to the 7th Annual SMR and Advanced Reactor Summit organized by Nuclear Energy Insider. What Is Terrestrial Energy Doing To Move Its Design To Market? His company is developing an Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR ...read more
    • Mon, Apr 10 2017

    Myth Buster: Atomic energy excitement actually pre-dates atomic bomb efforts

    There are incredible archives available to us within a few keystrokes. The following article from the October 22, 1939 edition of the New York Times might be useful to dispel the myth that interest in using atomic energy to replace coal came from a desire to domesticate the atomic bomb . This is a transcript that is assumed to be public domain as a result of expiration of copyright protection. It ...read more
    • Sat, Apr 8 2017

    Energized by young nuclear enthusiasts

    Attending an ANS (American Nuclear Society) Student Conference is one of my favorite ways to reinforce my faith in humanity and to stoke my excitement about the future of nuclear energy. This year’s event, Dispelling Nuclear Myths – hosted by the ANS chapter at the University of Pittsburg – has been a wonderful addition to my library of memories and growing contact database. Though some of ...read more
    • Thu, Apr 6 2017

    Atomic Action: Launching pro nuclear smartphone app

    ANS strudents addressing “brownie deficit” Generation Atomic hosted a launch party for its newly available nuclear advocacy app – Atomic Action – with an appropriate spread of apps [appetizers] at TGI Fridays on 5th Avenue in Pittsburg. Timed to coincide with the annual American Nuclear Society Student Conference, the launch party attracted an enthusiastic group of about 40 twenty-something ...read mo...
    • Thu, Apr 6 2017

    Milestone: Pro-nuclear group earns intervenor status in Diablo Canyon proceedings

    A real milestone in pro nuclear advocacy has been reached. For the first time in a long time, perhaps the first time ever, a group of citizens who strong support the continued operation of a nuclear power plant has become an intervenor {with the right to claim compensation for costs] in the legal proceedings that will determine the fate of a particular plant. Peter Allen, a California Public Utilities ...read more
    • Wed, Apr 5 2017

    What Does Westinghouse Bankruptcy Mean To Nuclear Energy Innovators?

    Steve Kuczynski, CNO, Southern Co. Attendees at the 7th Annual International SMR and Advanced Reactor Summit in Atlanta, GA were intensely curious about the effect of Westinghouse’s decision to enter into a Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization effort. They are also working hard to learn whatever lessons might be available to help them avoid similar situations. What About That Westinghouse ...read more
    • Tue, Apr 4 2017

    Atomic Advocacy enters the App economy with Atomic Action

    Though I try not to do this too often, today is a busy day. Therefore, without further ado or editing, here is a press release that Generation Atomic issued this morning. It announces actions and a product that I think you should hear about. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact Person: Eric Meyer, Executive Director, Generation Atomic Email: eric@generationatomic.org Phone: 218-384-1645 Grassroots ...read more
    • Tue, Apr 4 2017

    Nimble creators plan to avoid some of the struggles plaguing extra-large nuclear projects

    Making Nuclear Innovative: Left to Right: Josh Freed, Jessica Lovering, Todd Allen, Jeff Harper, Caroline Cochran Paying attention to Sen Murkowski In late March, Senator Lisa Murkowski and her staff played host to some of the leading thinkers in the growing community of people who believe that nuclear energy is too important to fail without trying to do things both differently and better. The ...read more
    • Mon, Apr 3 2017

    New Nuclear: North Anna Unit 3 Should Be Approved Before The End Of May

    NRC Chairman Svinicki taking charge at North Anna 3 mandatory COL hearing Dominion Resources’s North Anna nuclear power station unit number 3 should be approved for construction by the end of May 2017. It’s possible that the approval – in the form of a Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) 10 CFR Part 52 combined license (COL) – could be issued within the next three weeks. This would ...read more
    • Tue, Mar 28 2017

    Secretary of Energy Rick Perry visits Yucca Mountain and talks with Nevada Gov Brian Sandoval

    Yesterday, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry toured the Yucca Mountain site to get a first hand look at the current state of the facility. Following the site tour, Sec. Perry met with Gov. Brian Sandoval. Here is what the Department of Energy press release said about that conversation. “Governor Sandoval and I had a frank and productive conversation, where he expressed his appreciation for my visit ...read more