Brazil, France to sign agreement on defense, nuclear energy

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RIO DE JANEIRO, Dec. 16 (Xinhua) — Brazil and France will sign a cooperation agreement on defense and nuclear energy on Dec. 23, after months of negotiations, Brazilian media reported Tuesday.

The agreement will envision the construction of five submarines for Brazil, one of which will be propelled by nuclear energy.

France will be in charge of the submarines’ construction, while the part involving nuclear energy will be built by Brazil, with French technical cooperation.


Legends and Facts: Steven Chu on Nuclear Energy

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Here’s the Wall Street Journal‘s Keith Johnson buffing a legend that might alarm you a little:

Worried about radioactivity? Coal’s still your bogeyman. Dr. Chu says a typical coal plant emits 100 times more radiation than a nuclear plant, given the flyash emissions of radioactive particles.

That doesn’t mean nuclear power is much better. “The waste and proliferation issues [surrounding nuclear power] still haven’t been completely solved,” he said. A big part of the Department of Energy’s job is to oversee nuclear weapons and waste storage. And the Obama campaign made clear that increased reliance on nuclear power will require finding a “safe” way to dispose of radioactive waste.

We’d say, completely parenthetically, that coal has had an exceptionally bad couple of weeks.

Permanent storage remains unsolved in new push for nuclear energy

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Companies such as Exelon Corp. use pool storage to store spent nuclear rods on site.

Applications for new nuclear reactors keep rolling into the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), but everyone seems to be ignoring the crucial question: where will used nuclear rods be stored permanently? As nuclear companies continue to store nuclear waste on-site, environmentalists warn that without a permanent storage location, building more nuclear plants could be dangerous to the country’s security.The popularity of nuclear energy has undergone a resurgence of sorts as political and business leaders insist on a more energy-independent U.S. There are 16 new applications for a potential of 25 new nuclear reactors awaiting approval by the NRC. Chicago-based Exelon Corp., the nation’s largest nuclear energy producer, has a pending application for two new units in Texas, which would bring its total of nuclear reactors to 19.

LETTER:Nuclear energy, radiation not safe

Yet another positive letter about the dangers on nuclear energy and radiation.

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“Many people think that damage is only what is seen or can be visibly verified. This is not the case. Numerous things have been approved by the US government (Agent Orange, Red Dye 45) that were deadly. Their effects were not noticed until they were already in use. One of my examples, Agent Orange, was a military test project, so some people can dismiss it by saying it was an experimental unknown in the first place.”

Sudan reveals intention to pursue nuclear energy

November 4, 2008 (KHARTOUM) – A Sudanese official disclosed today that his country is contemplating developing a nuclear power programme for scientific research.

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Electricity pylons stand in front of Grafenrheinfeld nuclear power plant on July 9, 2008 in Grafenrheinfeld near Wuerzburg, Germany (Getty)

The Sudanese minister for Science and Technology Ibrahim Ahmed Omer told the official news agency (SUNA) that his government received approval for its plans from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Omer said that IAEA will fund the programme jointly with the Sudanese government. However he did not say if a formal agreement has been signed.

The Sudanese official noted that the world is moving towards using peaceful use of nuclear energy to produce electricity.

He further said that despite Sudan’s diverse energy sources its devising plans for any future needs to make use of the available technology in different aspects.

Sudan is a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which allows countries to build nuclear power stations under international supervision. Its northern neighbor Egypt is already working on constructing a nuclear power station that is expected to be completed within the next 10 years.

Omer said he toured Japan, Austria and Mozambique to brief officials there on the needs of Sudan and opportunities to strengthen bilateral cooperation.


Experts caution on nuclear energy

Experts caution on nuclear energy

Written By:Judith Akolo   , Posted: Sat, Nov 01, 2008

Kenya should tread carefully and not rush into investing in nuclear energy.

Geothermal experts are now urging the government to instead invest, in the vast geothermal resources found in Kenya’s rift valley system that has an estimated potential of 7000 megawatts.

“Kenya should look for funds to invest fully in geothermal instead of nuclear energy, whereas nuclear energy is cheaper, it could be more devastating to the environment, we do not know what negative effects it might cause to generations to come,” said Ludvik Georgsson of the United Nations University, Geothermal Training Program.

Kenya’s geothermal potential stands at an estimated 7,000 megawatts.

However owing to the high cost of investment in the renewable energy the country has only managed to develop just under 130 megawatts, and now says Kenya could be assisted by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development – OECD countries once the financial melt-down in pegged.

According to the Business Development and Strategy Director at KenGen, Albert Mugo, the electricity generating company is set to tap into the capital markets to finance its geothermal development through an infrastructure bond.

The company needs some 12 billion shillings to develop the recently identified, 6 rigs used in tapping geothermal.

They were speaking at the venue of training for participants drawn from Djibouti, Burundi, Yemen, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iceland, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and host Kenya.

The move is aimed at developing the much needed human capital to help in developing geothermal resources in the region.

Election Day: A Voter Scorecard on Nuclear Energy

Election Day: A Voter Scorecard on Nuclear Energy

Election Day A Voter Scorecard on Nuclear EnergyWith Election Day just one week away, NEI Nuclear Notes is here to provide readers with a handy voter scorecard on nuclear energy. We sent a survey to all 69 Democratic and Republican candidates running for the U.S. Senate (Mark Pryor [D-AR] is running unopposed) and asked these three questions:

1. Does your candidate support the use of nuclear energy as a source of carbon-free electricity in the U.S.?
2. Does your candidate support the expansion of nuclear energy in the United States?
3. Does your candidate support the expansion of nuclear energy in his/her state?

We received completed questionnaires from 31 candidates. Some key takeaways:

  • 30 candidates were supportive of the use of nuclear energy in the U.S.
  • 30 candidates supported the expansion of nuclear energy in their state.
  • Democratic and Republican Senate candidates from: Idaho, Kansas, Nebraska, North Carolina, and Wyoming were in favor expanding nuclear power in their states.
  • Challengers submitted 19 questionnaires, incumbents 12.

So how’d your candidate fare? Did they make the list?

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