Viewing 40 posts - 161 through 200 (of 240 total)
  • anothrer nuclear power station cancelled
  • Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    maxrtorque – I do not own a car and nuclear emmissions are released into the environment all the time and cause massive and long lasting pollution.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Full Member

    tjagain
    Full Member

    Nuclear can never make up the shortfall in time. Plants simply take too long to build. Hinkley is how late now?

    Hinkley’s pretty much a textbook example of how not to do it tbf. It’s not a good example for anything apart from that weird thing where people sometimes decide to do things the most expensive way possible regardless of if it makes any sense, just to prove they can. The “Buying Alan Shearer for £15m effect” I shall call it.

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Northwind – have not most recent nuclear projects worldwide been on a similar scale – 20+ years from the go ahead to any electricity?

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Full Member

    Depends what you mean by “go-ahead”. Consultations, etc, or actual build time. Non-engineering planning, public consent, finance, and general all round Politics tend to add a huge amount to the actual build. OTOH, people quite reasonably suggest that some of the recent faster projects like Astravets and Haiyang might have been rushed more than they should. Basically I think you need to separate out “time it has to take to do this” and “time it will take including entire years of totally avoidable fannying about”.

    TBH it’s hard to separate these things and possibly there’s no such thing as a really good example but hinkley’s particularly farcical. Vogtle would probably be a good example if it weren’t for the whole Westinghouse thing.

    (though in point of fact even Hinkley’s still scheduled- hah- to go online within 20 years from absolute start to finish. It was originally announced in 2008, and ground works only really started in 2014, so there’s still a fair chance that it’ll be generating within 2 decades. It’s just really easy to forget how relatively recent construction’s start was, because it was already going over budget and over schedule before anyone lifted a shovel. )

    We could definitely go planning-to-power in a decade with some of the modern designs, without cutting any corners in the plant. Basically that’s entirely a matter of political will. IMO that political will is the actual reason that nuclear’s probably not going to play the part in tackling the climate crisis that it should- not time, not money, nothing to do with the technology, just that governments are basically incapable of doing even the most essential stuff today, if there aren’t any benefits til after they retire. They wouldn’t go to the toilet if they thought there was a chance they’d be voted out before they flush, so they end up serving most of their term with shit in their pants.

    But if we started actually acting like adults, everything changes. Right now it seems to me where in a hopeless middle ground where the UK is expecting and requiring to and acting like it will have nuclear as a major part of its energy strategy, but isn’t actually even trying to make it happen. Maybe we can keep warm around a bonfire of shitted pants.

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    nuclear emmissions are released into the environment all the time and cause massive and long lasting pollution.

    Citation please. We are heavily regulated by SEPA and the only isotope we discharge is tritium in concentrations far below that found in nature. Everything else is filtered. Unlike coal.

    have not most recent nuclear projects worldwide been on a similar scale – 20+ years from the go ahead to any electricity?

    I’ve corrected this numerous times and you keep throwing it out hoping it will stick. No, they have generally not, the exception being the N type predecessors to the EPR. Hitachi ABWRs have been built as quickly as 5 years from first digs to commissioned and Westinghouse AP1000s were up and going within a decade.

    You also keep saying Hinkley C is delayed like its a technical issue. First they had to have an approved GDA (generic design assessment) from the ONR, then planning permission for the new station including local consultations. Nothing was getting done before any of those were sorted. Then there was the funding issue which took some time to close out. That’s what has delayed the build,technically I’m not aware of anything holding it back. EPRs are already generating, they work, the casting problems experienced in France and Finland shouldn’t be repeated here assuming Le Crueset have their act together.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Full Member

    @squirrelking, everything you say about those delays is true but it’s not all that’s caused delays. Last year it was all about bad ground conditions frinstance. Not a “nuclear” issue of course except in that the plant’s nature makes it one of the biggest construction projects in the world, but those two are inseparable. And they haven’t reached the tricky bits.

    IIRC EDF are still talking about generating by the end of 2025, but with a possible delay of 18 months. Likely? I bet 20 scottish pence that it’s not fully operational by 2028.

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    You’re right, it’s not all exclusively down to the stuff I listed but more importantly it’s not technical issues either. Any large project would be similarly impacted so it’s not really fair to single this one out is it?

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    So why is there radioactive contamination in the irish sea? Radioactive contamination all around sellafeild? all around Dounray?

    yes they are not supposed to discharge radioactivity but “accidental” discharges happen all the time.

    Then of course there is fukishima, 3 mile island, windscale, chernobyl

    its the catastrophic nature that concerns and the long lasting effects of the pollution.

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/irish-sea-radioactivity-worse-than-at-nuclear-site-1.161463

    Premier Icon hols2
    Free Member

    yes they are not supposed to discharge radioactivity but “accidental” discharges happen all the time.

    Problem is that coal also contains trace amounts of radioactive material that is released when it is burned. A trace amount adds up to a lot when you are burning billions of tonnes of the stuff. On top of that, coal emissions are nasty anyway, so coal plants cause tens of thousands of lung cancers, but these are widely distributed and don’t alarm the public like Chernobyl did, despite killing many more people.

    Chernobyl was an order of magnitude worse than Fukushima, which was an order of magnitude worse than Three-mile Island. The Chernobyl type reactors were massively flawed, more conventional designs are much safer. If a Fukushima type accident occurred once per decade, the environmental harm would still be much less than that caused by coal, oil, and natural gas.

    Another consideration about nuclear accidents is that, when a serious one occurs, lessons are learned from it, so it is much less likely to occur again. Fukushima happened because the backup generators for the cooling system had no redundancy and were all knocked out by a gigantic tsunami that breached the sea-wall. (Lesson: Ensure redundancy of critical systems.) On top of that, the operators were too scared of their bosses that they dithered for days because they didn’t want to be held responsible for damaging the reactor by pumping in seawater to cool it. That would have prevented the hydrogen explosions that destroyed the reactor, but would have wrecked it in the process. The operators were too scared to do that in case their bosses got angry. That’s a cultural management problem that can be addressed by having explicit regulations for situations where the cooling system fails.

    Premier Icon brads
    Full Member

    Worked in nuclear power production for the last 35 years.
    It’s about time the Scottish government woke up and invested in it sooner rather than later.
    The grid need large scale rotating machines as well. Or an equivalent that no one seems to want to pay for either.

    Premier Icon Daffy
    Full Member

    squirrelking
    Free Member
    Citation please. We are heavily regulated by SEPA and the only isotope we discharge is tritium in concentrations far below that found in nature. Everything else is filtered. Unlike coal.

    @squirrelking – sorry, but this is a fact. Stones near decommissioned discharge pipes in the Solway firth from 2002-2020 have been found to have highly dangerous levels of Cesium137. How did these stones become so irradiated?

    Link to CORE report

    There’s also another report on there (that I can’t for the life of me find again) which shows that radioactivity near active discharge points was 2000% higher in 2016 than it was when first recorded in 2007.

    Premier Icon Daffy
    Full Member

    Key facts and figures:

    UK electricity demand has dropped 20% in the last 7 years.

    Typical daily demand is 30GW (but can be over 37 in winter)

    Renewables typically contribute between 4 and 13GW of this capacity but it’s often closer to the lower end and is highly variable. Wind has a better capacity factor at an average of ~42% of the ~8GW capacity, whilst solar has a capacity factor of around 10% on 13GW of generation capacity, which isn’t great.

    Nuclear contributes around 10-13%

    The rest predominately comes from Gas and biomass.

    So far, 2000 offshore wind turbines generate the lions share of wind energy at a total development cost of ~£17bn

    Decommissioning costs for Sellafield alone are at ~£53bn and are rising annually.

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    @tjagain the contam you are talking about is historic discharges from when stuff wasn’t regulated like it is now. Sellafield and Dounreay both have horrific legacies that are mind boggling in today’s industry, I’d imagine that would account for the discharges in the Solway as well from Chapelcross.

    As I said, everything is regulated now and the stuff getting flung under the carpet in the old days no longer happens.

    As for that report, I’d prefer to see some real numbers. Concentrations “thousands of times greater” means absolutely nothing without context or dose rates. I could claim a ludicrously high percentage increase of wildlife deaths caused by wind farms that, whilst factually correct, would be meaningless without the proper context.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Full Member

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    You’re right, it’s not all exclusively down to the stuff I listed but more importantly it’s not technical issues either. Any large project would be similarly impacted so it’s not really fair to single this one out is it?

    Completely fair- nuclear is always (currently) a massive and complex project, with relatively little repeatability, so civil engineering challenges are magnified. It’s not about singling nuclear out, rather the opposite in fact- you can’t give it a free pass on this because it’s complicated, rather you have to take into account that complexity and scale as a disadvantage. And in Hinkley’s case, it’s a project that’s right at the complex end of big nuclear.

    Another thing is that discounting this sort of challenge with big nuclear, diminishes much of the point of smaller nuclear. Even with current plants, going with AP1000s wouldn’t have removed the likelihood of some construction challenges, but would have meant that it wasn’t, frexample, the biggest concrete concrete pour in UK history. (bad example maybe as AP1000s would have been impacted by the collapse of Westinghouse, but you get the drift)

    Premier Icon squirrelking
    Free Member

    Ah okay I see where you’re coming from. Yeah that’s fair, I’m just trying to make it very clear that the delay issues that Hinkley has suffered from are nothing to do with any technical issues despite what some folk would like others to believe.

    Premier Icon johnnystorm
    Full Member

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/radioactivity-in-food-and-the-environment-rife-reports

    Sellafield inevitably is responsible for the highest Total Dose but it’s still under half the limit.

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    delay issues that Hinkley has suffered from are nothing to do with any technical issues despite what some folk would like others to believe.

    If that is aimed at me again do not make up stuff I have not said.

    I merely said like most nuclear reactors time taken is 20+ years from the decision to go ahead to generating electricity. Hinkley is going to be nearer 30 years if it ever produces any electicity.

    Premier Icon johnnystorm
    Full Member

    Caesium 137 levels around the UK including the Solway Firth:

    Premier Icon johnnystorm
    Full Member

    There’s also another report on there (that I can’t for the life of me find again) which shows that radioactivity near active discharge points was 2000% higher in 2016 than it was when first recorded in 2007.

    The Rife report is in its 25th year and the AEMR preceded it. By and large discharges have a downward trend, certainly not a massive increase like 2000%!

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    I work on this stuff, esecially the nuclear bit, and have been resisting the temptation but can’t any longer….

    Hinkley Final Investment decision was mid-2016. You don’t just wake up one day and decide to build an EPR- there is a loooong lead time for all sorts of reasons, but the ‘Go’ decision was made four years ago.

    There is much confusion of electricity and energy in this thread. Electricity is only about 20-25% of UK energy consupmtion. If you want to eliminate hydrocarbon fuels (and that’s what Net Zero means) then you have choices- for example 200000 wind turbines, 250000 square km of biofuel crops, a couple of hundred nuclear reactors, or carbon capture and storage of maybe 50 million tonnes of CO2 per year. Any of these is a massive change, unlike anything we have done before. Read Dave Mackay’s book- it’s a bit dated now but the points he makes are valid.

    On radioactivity and discharges, as others have said, modern limits are way lower than historical ones though Nobody sane wants to go back to the seventies, and just because you can measure something, that doesn’t make it dangerous. I’d sooner work with radioactivity than the horrors left behind by Victorian gas works (that was a summer job I won’t forget), and I just don’t believe those numbers in the Irish Times. It’s easy to mess up these measurements and, in almost 40 years, I have never seen numbers like that from the Irish Sea.

    I could go on but won’t…..

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Hinkley Final Investment decision was mid-2016. You don’t just wake up one day and decide to build an EPR- there is a loooong lead time for all sorts of reasons, but the ‘Go’ decision was made four years ago.

    completely disingenuous. It was announced it was going to be built in 2010 having had some years of discussion beforehand. License to build was 2012 2008 preparatory work started

    On radioactive pollution. there is much dispute in the medical world over this. some say there is a safe limit, some say there is no safe limits – all radioactivity causes issues. Yes even background radioactivity from Radon or Granite.

    Me – I like to be cautious on this because its a pandoras box. You cannot get rid of radioactivity out of the environment.

    Premier Icon maxtorque
    Full Member

    The is also the big problem of public perception:

    When asked

    “would you mind having a nuclear powerstation built near you?”

    pretty clearly a massive majority will answer

    “NO”

    But actually this is wrong question to ask. The real question is:

    “Would you prefer to have a nuclear powerstation built near you OR would you prefer to have rolling blackouts in your electricity supply at times of high demand and low renewable generation”

    Let me suggest, that the answer to THAT question is going to be rather different, especially if you ask it AFTER people have actually experienced said blackouts

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Or burn more fossil fuels or decrease electricity consumption dramatically. Two more choices

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    some of you guys might be able to answer this related question. Biomass. How much wood do you need to burn to get a similar level of generation ( to hinkley)? I am thinking of all those horrid conifer plantations all over scotland especially argyle. could a Bioimass plant be built somewhere in the clyde estuary and burn all that stuff over say 20 years ie 5% of it a year ( transported by boat to the plant) with obviously a replanting with native species. Is this sort of idea the same magnitude or not? Any clues? Seems like a good solution to me and gives the breathing space / extra capacity and if you do the replanting properly its near carbon neutral

    Or is that amount of biomass orders of magnitude to small?

    Premier Icon maxtorque
    Full Member

    The other significant problem is that people dont’ understand the risks posed by pollution, both nuclear and conventional.

    Yes the beaches near Nuclear stations have increased levels of detectable raditation, that could indeed given any person spending SIGNIFICANT amounts of time there potential heath problems. But let me ask, how many actual people have got health issues due to that contamination? How many people spend months or years there?

    Compare that to say Oxides of Nitrogen released by buring coal or oil. They are around us all, in locations where we DO spend a lot of time (especially if you live in a built up area). Children are partiularly suscpetable to things like Asthma brough on by really quite low concentrations. And yet the average person doensn’t see this as “dangerous” depsite being, in terms of total deaths, and in terms of the cost to our health service, and loss of earnings from people sick off work as a result, is many, mnay, many times more significant.

    TJ simply dismisses this with a simple “i dont’ have a car”, which is great and all, but unfortunately, around 25 million people DO have a car in the UK alone, and you ARE going to breath in “their” pollution do to sharing an atmosphere with them…..

    But because “NUCLEAR!!” the average person in the street (and i think TJ) consider nuclear waste to be a more serious problem!

    According to the report referenced above, the highest public area dose localised around Sellafield is 0.37 mS per year. How “dangerous” is that?

    This report details the doesage you recieve from cosmic radiation by living in Europe:

    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17445647.2017.1384934

    It says “This paper presents and describes the European Annual Cosmic-Ray Dose Map at 1 km resolution (Main Map). The Main Map displays the annual effective dose that a person may receive from cosmic rays at the ground level, which ranges from 301 to 3955 μSv”

    Therefore the dose you get, simply due to cosmic radiation is pretty much the same as, and up to 13 times higher than the dose from the worst case at Sellafield.

    Hence the report stating:

    “Natural ionizing radiation is considered the largest contributor to the collective effective dose received by the world population. The human population is continuously exposed to ionizing radiation from several natural sources that can be classified into two broad categories: high-energy cosmic rays incident on the earth’s atmosphere and releasing secondary radiation (cosmic contribution); and radioactive nuclides that originated in the earth’s crust and are present everywhere in the environment, including the human body itself. For most individuals, natural exposure exceeds that from all man-made sources combined”

    So lets not all have a panic attack about “ooh noes, nuclear radiation is destroying everything” shall we.

    Today, IMO, the only viable & secure method to meet our greedy energy needs, the method with the lowest overall pollution impact, but unfortunately far from the lowest total cost includes a significant proportion of nuclear driven generation.

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    I’ve been called many things but never before disingenuous.

    The Final Investment Decision is just that and there is clearly preparatory work beforehand, as there would be for any large capital project. It doesn’t have to take years though- Barakah Contract 2009, Unit 1 Construction start 2012, Unit 1 first grid connection 2020

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    To say it started 8 years after it did is disingenuous! They were digging ground in 2008 12 years ago. Its already several years behind schedule

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    How much wood do you need to burn to get a similar level of generation ( to hinkley)?

    If I have done the sum right, you’d need 11 sq km of biomass per day to give you Hinkley’s output. There are 14000 sq km of woodland in scotland so you would burn every tree in scotland in about 3.5 years.

    Premier Icon sl2000
    Full Member

    some of you guys might be able to answer this related question. Biomass. How much wood do you need to burn to get a similar level of generation ( to hinkley)?

    @tjagain I think you’d love Dave Mackay’s book ‘Sustainable Energy – without the hot air’ (as referenced by @dpfr above). It answers questions like that brilliantly – in an entertaining back-of-envelope-calculation way. It really helped me to clarify my own views on this subject.

    Premier Icon maxtorque
    Full Member

    I fear TJ you don’t fully understand just how powerful modern power stations are!

    GW of power takes KW of input energy. A modern Gas combined cycle plant might be 60% efficient. So say 4 GW of power takes 6.6 GW of input energy. Buring 1Kg of high density hydrocarbon fuel (coal or oil) produces around 8kWH of heat, so 6.6GW of heat requires 883 tonnes of fuel per hour!

    A typical fast growing softwood has a density of 350 kg/m^3, so that 883 tonnes/hr requires 2,380 cubic meters of trees being fed in, per hour. A typical railway box car has a volume of about 150 cubic meters, so you need 16 odd box cars an hour to run that powerstation! (384 per day, typical train with 50 box cars, about 8 trains per day, one every 3 hours)

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    TJ simply dismisses this with a simple “i dont’ have a car”,

    That was in response to someone who made a crack about people protesting against nuclear energy and then getting in their cars – ie accusation of Hypocrisy

    As regards the dangers from radiation – two issues. its cumulative so everyone on this planet now gets more radioactivity than pre atomic era. does this increase risk?

    I fully accept other energy production is polluting as well. the issue is they do not remain deadly for thousands of years.

    I advocate a carbon tax based economy and a huge reduction in energy usage via a carrot and stick approach a nd I want to see the money wasted on nuclear used for real low carbon energy consumption. Nuclear has had and continues to get public money orders of magnitude higher than alternatives and since Hinkley was first mooted in 2008 scotland has with minimal public money increased its renewable to a level of generation that is of similar magnitude to Hinkley if not more

    And yes – we now have enough wind generation to be a part of a sensible mix. thats why we need the tidal. If the money wasted over the last 20 years on nuclear had been put into tidal we wouldn’t need the nuclear

    And as above – i advocate a huge reduction in energy usage – not just electricity.

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    Of course they were digging- you need to make sure the ground conditions are suitable. It’s called site characterisation and is part of essential preparatory work, as is getting regulatory approval of the design and a host of other things.

    If you choose to define the start point somewhere other than the 2016 FID, that’s fine and I can see why you might, but read what I posted. I said the FID was 2016 and there was a long lead time before it.

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    the issue is they do not remain deadly for thousands of years

    No- things like cadmium, mercury, arsenic remain deadly forever

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Thanks for the info on biomnass. so the trees are an order of magnitude to small.

    Premier Icon dpfr
    Full Member

    At least one- I have burned every tree in Scotland, not just the plantation forestry!

    Seriously, sl2000’s suggestion above to read Dave Mackay’s book is a good one. He was a really interesting guy, and you can download it free from the web

    Premier Icon johnnystorm
    Full Member

    Oatway etc al, Public Health England, 2016

    Premier Icon maxtorque
    Full Member

    If man made climate change is indeed the effect we think it is (and by the time we are absolutely sure, it’ll be far too late to do anything about it…) then i’d argue that this does indeed “last for thousands of years” and in fact, unlike stored nuclear waste, directly affects every single person on the planet on a daily basis.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Full Member

    maxrtorque – I do not own a car and nuclear emmissions are released into the environment all the time and cause massive and long lasting pollution.

    Thing is we have a stock fissile material in the UK already don’t we, we’ve even accepted other nations material for reprocessing I believe.

    And if you don’t process it into fuel and use it, what exactly do you think happens to it?

    We either flog it to nations with a functioning nuclear power industry or it ends up in a geological waste repository, to become future generations problem to deal with…

    Believe it or not recovering and processing fissile material into fuel to generate leccy to run your fridge/iPhone/Tesla is more environmentally and socially responsible that paying Russian oligarchs for gas…

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    this is one of the issues to me. You guys look to the future and think nuclear is all good. I look to the past and see nothing but lies, deceit and accidents.

    Premier Icon eddiebaby
    Full Member

    I do not own a car and nuclear emmissions are released into the environment all the time and cause massive and long lasting pollution.

    You forgot about mutants! Bring on the superheroes!
    But possibly not the bad Japanese monsters.

Viewing 40 posts - 161 through 200 (of 240 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.