Uranium-rich Niger struggles despite nuclear resurgence (RFI.fr/en- November 29, 2022)

https://www.rfi.fr/en/

Niamey (Niger) (AFP) – Prospects for the world’s nuclear industry have been boosted by the war in Ukraine and mounting hostility towards climate-wrecking fossil fuels — but Niger, one of the world’s biggest sources of uranium, has yet to feel the improvement.

The deeply impoverished landlocked Sahel state is a major supplier of uranium to the European Union, accounting for a fifth of its supplies, and is especially important to France, its former colonial power. But its mining industry is in the doldrums.

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The nuclear renaissance, reborn: Exploration activities are on the uptick as uranium is, once again, in demand – by Alexandra Lopez-Pacheco (CIM Magazine – November 23, 2022)

https://magazine.cim.org/en/

After a crushing 11-year downturn, the uranium sector is experiencing the beginning of a revival. Many are hoping that this is the one that turns the sector into a key player in the decarbonized economy of the future.

The last time junior uranium explorers had so much reason to be optimistic was in the years between 2004 and 2008. Duane Parnham, executive chairman and CEO of the Toronto-based uranium junior exploration company Madison Metals, recalls that excitement is what got him into the sector after attending the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) annual convention in 2006.

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Opinion: Nuclear energy — We CANDU it and we should – by Chris Keefer (Financial Post – November 24, 2022)

https://financialpost.com/

Chris Keefer, a physician, is president of Canadians for Nuclear and director of Doctors for Nuclear Energy.

CANDU, the made-in-Canada nuclear reactor technology that powered the Ontario coal phaseout, North America’s greatest greenhouse-gas reduction, is the victim of a bizarre form of reverse protectionism that favours overseas supply chains and technologies over homegrown ones.

The federal government recently announced a 30 per cent “Clean Technology Investment Tax Credit” to incentivize spending on a range of clean-energy technologies, such as wind, solar and storage.

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OPINION: Canada needs more clean power. Ottawa’s $1-billion for nuclear is just a start – by Editorial (Globe and Mail – October 31, 2022)

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/

It’s been three decades since a new nuclear power plant started producing electricity in Canada. Last week, Ottawa put almost $1-billion on the table to kick-start work on the next one.

This time, the technology is American and Japanese, and the power output will be a third of the hulking CANDU reactors of the past. The new technology, a small modular reactor (SMR) that’s never been built in North America, remains unlicensed in Canada, but its backers, Ottawa and Queen’s Park, believe it will be operating in six years at the Darlington nuclear facility northeast of Toronto.

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Poland building its first nuclear power plant is ‘A clear message to Russia: We will not let them weaponize energy any longer’ (Associated Press/Fortune Magazine – October 29, 2022)

https://fortune.com/

Poland has chosen the U.S. government and Westinghouse to build the central European country’s first nuclear power plant, part of an effort to burn less coal and gain greater energy independence.

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said late Friday on Twitter that Poland would use the “reliable, safe technology” of the Westinghouse Electric Company for the plant in Pomerania province near the Baltic Sea coast. The exact location remains to be identified.

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OPINION: The climate hypocrisy of rich countries – by Bjorn Lomborg (Globe and Mail – October 31, 2022)

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/

Every year, global climate summits feature a parade of hypocrisy, as the world’s elite arrive on private jets to lecture humanity on cutting carbon emissions.

But this November’s United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Egypt will offer even more breathtaking hypocrisy than usual, because the world’s rich will zealously lecture poor countries about the dangers of fossil fuels – after themselves devouring massive amounts of new gas, coal and oil.

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Russia’s Uranium Dominance Threatens America’s Next-Gen Nuclear Plans – by Tsvetana Paraskova (Oil Price.com – Oct 23, 2022)

https://oilprice.com/

The U.S. is doubling down on nuclear power generation as a means to reduce emissions and is supporting demonstration projects of advanced smaller nuclear reactors that promise to be more efficient and cost less to build than the current nuclear fleet.

However, there is one major hurdle to the construction of most advanced reactors under development in the United States—the uranium type of fuel on which those reactors are designed to run is currently sold commercially by only one company in the world. And that company is a subsidiary of Russia’s ROSATOM, the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation.

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Trudeau government’s $1B nuclear reactor investment shows the political bargains that have to be made – by Heather Scoffield (Toronto Star – October 25, 2022)

https://www.thestar.com/

Ottawa is going nuclear in a big way, putting almost $1 billion into building a new reactor at Darlington, near Toronto. It’s a move that has been years in the making and comes with plenty of controversy — as well as prospects to test a new low-emissions technology to generate electricity, and enough power for 300,000 homes.

It’s the latest sign that Canada’s climate change commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 will have to be a voyage full of political compromise and big bucks that come not just from government but from the private sector.

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‘Saviour for the world:’ Saskatchewan fills resource gaps caused by war in Ukraine – by Kelly Geraldine Malone (Saskatoon StarPhoenix – October 23, 2022)

https://thestarphoenix.com/

With its stable and established resource and agriculture sector, the province has found itself in a position to help fill the global gap caused by the war.

Cameco Corp. is in a position to grow, the president of the Saskatoon-based Uranium giant recently told investors, because a “geopolitical crisis has hit our market” with Russia’s war on Ukraine.

Tim Gitzel was speaking earlier this month after the company announced it had partnered with Brookfield Renewable Partners to acquire Westinghouse Electric, a nuclear power plant equipment maker.

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Uranium Snapshot: Seven juniors searching for the energy metal – by Norm Tollinsky (Northern Miner – October 20, 2022)

Global mining news

As the world looks for low-carbon energy solutions, more nations are coming to the conclusion that nuclear power needs to be part of the mix. Here are seven junior companies looking for the next uranium deposits to power the nuclear renaissance.

BASIN URANIUM

In early September, Basin Uranium (CSE: NCLR, US-OTC: BURCF) announced the intersection of significant uranium mineralization in first-phase drilling at its flagship Mann Lake uranium project in Saskatchewan’s Athabasca Basin.

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Cameco pivots off volatile uranium market with big bet on Westinghouse – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – October 12, 2022)

https://financialpost.com/

Cameco is investing $2.2 billion for a 49% stake in Westinghouse Electric, which services nuclear reactors

Decarbonization could end up as a boon for nuclear power, which is capable of generating lots of energy while releasing no carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

But as of today, there are still plenty of headwinds for uranium producers such as Saskatoon-based Cameco Corp. So on Tuesday, chief executive Tim Gitzel did something that he hopes will make it easier to push through those headwinds: Cameco said it would invest $2.2 billion for a 49 per cent stake in Pennsylvania-based Westinghouse Electric Co., which services nuclear reactors, diversifying Cameco away from the volatile uranium market.

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NWMO reveals concepts for Centre of Expertise in Ignace – by Clint Fleury (Northern Ontario Business – October 13, 2022)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

A $21-million Centre of Expertise will accompany deep geological repository for nuclear waste

IGNACE, Ont.— The Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) has unveiled its newest project, a $21-million facility for scientists and experts to continue their research on nuclear waste management and a wide variety of disciplines.

The Centre of Expertise will be located in either Ignace or South Bruce, depending on which will of the two is selected as host community for the deep geological repository to house spent nuclear fuel.

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Radiation Victims Seek Expansion of 32-Year-Old Compensation Act – by Carolyn Campbell (Daily Yonder – October 11, 2022)

Home

Larry King crossed his arms and leaned back in his chair on the stone porch of his ancestral home in Church Rock, New Mexico. The Puerco River, which irrigates ranch land, is just beyond the fence. He breathes heavily, pushing his voice raspy. “I’m 65. I’m one of the younger, aging uranium miners who worked in the uranium mines. My lungs aren’t so good,” he says.

In addition to being a miner, his home borders the site of the largest radioactive spills in U.S history. In July 1979, a dam at the uranium mine broke, releasing over 94 million gallons of toxic waste into the river behind his house and into the fields and water table.

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As the Western world looks for ‘Western fuel,’ Canadian nuclear fuel firm is buying into Westinghouse Electric Co. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – October 12, 2022)

https://www.post-gazette.com/

As nuclear operators around the world forge plans to turn away from Russia, a Canadian nuclear fuel company, Cameco Corp., is buying into one of Russia’s nuclear industry’s main foils: Westinghouse Electric Co.

Westinghouse, a Cranberry-based nuclear engineering company, is changing hands again, four years after it was bought out of bankruptcy in 2018 by Canadian investment firm Brookfield Business Partners for $4.6 billion. Westinghouse will still be under the Brookfield umbrella when the newly announced deal closes, expected in the second half of next year.

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France Mulls New Uranium Plant to Cut West’s Reliance on Russia – by Francois de Beaupuy (Bloomberg News – October 7, 2022)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — French state-controlled uranium producer Orano SA is considering growing its capacity to enrich the radioactive ore into nuclear fuel by almost 50% as Western governments and utilities seek to reduce their reliance on Russia since its attack on Ukraine.

The war is “reviving the urgency” to raise Western uranium-enrichment capacity to avoid potential shortages, Orano said, according to a statement of France’s public debate committee. The cost of the capacity extension from 7.5 million to 11 million so-called separative work units at its plant in central France is estimated at 1.3 billion euros ($1.3 billion).

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