Archive | Uranium and Nuclear Power Industry

We Need a Nuclear New Deal, Not a Green New Deal – by Emmet Penney and Adrian Calderon (The Bellows – September 25, 2020)

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In July, presidential candidate Joe Biden released his climate and infrastructure plan, “The Biden Plan to Build a Modern, Sustainable Infrastructure and an Equitable Clean Energy Future.”

From the automotive industry, to infrastructure, to addressing racial inequality, to labor protections, to a massive renewable energy build out, Biden aims to remake the American industrial base, right past wrongs, and generate a gobsmacking 10 million “good union jobs” in the process.

For comparison, the Works Progress Administration under the New Deal created 8.5 million jobs. Biden’s capacious plan has raised eyebrows. Some believe it speaks to his “deceptive radicalism;” others rightly point out that he’s “endorsed the Green New Deal in all but name.” Continue Reading →

Rio Tinto-owned company in dispute with Federal Government over Kakadu uranium mine – by Cathy Van Extel and Scott Mitchell (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – October 20, 2020)

https://www.abc.net.au/

The Ranger Uranium Mine in Kakadu is looming as the next great test of mining giant Rio Tinto, following the international outcry over the destruction of the 46,000-year-old Juukan caves in the Pilbara.

A subsidiary of Rio Tinto is in dispute with the Federal Government over paying for scientific monitoring of the mine, which is on the edge of world heritage wetlands and will close in January 2021.

Under an agreement with the Federal Government, the site must be rehabilitated by 2026. Continue Reading →

Bruce Power to help explore use of eVinci in Canada (World Nuclear News – October 12, 2020)

https://www.world-nuclear-news.org/

Over the next year, the work between Bruce Power and Westinghouse will focus on furthering public policy and the regulatory framework; assessing the economic, social and environmental contribution of the eVinci technology compared to alternatives, such as diesel or other fossil fuels; identifying potential industrial applications; and accelerating the roadmap for Canada to host a demonstration unit as part of the federal small modular reactor action plan.

The eVinci micro reactor is a next-generation, small battery for decentralised generation markets and micro grids such as remote communities, remote industrial mines and critical infrastructure.

It is designed to provide competitive and resilient power and superior reliability with minimal maintenance, and its small size allows for standard transportation methods and rapid, on-site deployment. Continue Reading →

Agreement finalised to reduce US reliance on uranium from Russia – by Mariaan Webb (MiningWeekly.com – October 7, 2020)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

The governments of the US and Russia have finalised a deal extending the limits of uranium imports from Russia for another 20 years, a move which US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross says will help revitalise the domestic nuclear industry.

The final amendment to the agreement suspending the antidumping investigation on uranium from Russia now extends through 2040. It was previously set to expire on December 31, 2020, which would have resulted in unchecked imports of Russian uranium.

“This landmark agreement will contribute to the revitalisation of American nuclear industry, while promoting America’s long-term strategic interests,” said Ross in a statement on Tuesday. Continue Reading →

3 decommissioned uranium mines near Bancroft, Ont. deemed protected, no health impacts: study – by Greg Davis (Global News – September 29, 2020)

https://globalnews.ca/

A study says three decommissioned uranium sites near Bancroft, Ont., are protected and pose no health impacts on residents.

In 2019 the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) launched an independent environmental monitoring program in the Bancroft area, focusing on the Dyno, Madawaska and Bicroft decommissioned uranium mine sites. Each site processed low-grad uranium ore which left behind tailings — waste generated by the mining and milling of uranium ore.

The commission is licensed to manage the three sites, which are under long-term monitoring and maintenance. The three sites were remediated in the 1980s and 1990s. Continue Reading →

Explorers targeting Saskatchewan’s diversified mineral prospects – by Ellsworth Dickson (Resource World – September 22, 2020)

https://resourceworld.com/

Saskatchewan is the largest exporter of agri-food products in Canada; however, it is also notable for hosting a variety of mineral resources and even heat for a new geothermal plant.

The Prairie province has approximately half of the world’s potash reserves and 8% of the world’s recoverable uranium reserves. The Athabasca basin of northern Saskatchewan has the world’s highest grade uranium mines.

Its 2019 production of 18 million pounds of U3O8 are being used in Canada and globally to generate some 306 billion kilowatt hours of electricity which is equivalent to powering about 28 million homes with an almost zero carbon footprint – and there is a great deal of uranium yet to be discovered and to mine. Proven and Probable Reserves stand at 565.8 million pounds U3O8. Continue Reading →

Mini-Reactors Are Gaining Traction in the Push for Greener Grids – by Will Wade (Bloomberg News – August 31, 2020)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — The nuclear industry has been stalled for years now, struggling to compete with cheaper forms of power and viewed as suspect ever since the accidents at Fukushima, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island.
Only two reactors are being built in the U.S., in Georgia, and they are years behind schedule and weighed down by cost overruns and political opposition.

But now there’s a race to take nuclear power in a radically different direction in a bid to revive the industry. Companies around the world, including NuScale Power LLC in the U.S., China National Nuclear Corp. and Russia’s Rosatom, are developing a new generation of reactors, with some designs that will be more than 90% smaller than the hulking facilities that have dominated the industry for decades. One model can even fit into a single-family house. Continue Reading →

Canada’s nuclear industry rolled with the COVID-19 pandemic punch, documents show – by David Akin (Global News – September 5, 2020)

https://globalnews.ca/

As the COVID-19 pandemic rolled across the country early this spring, shutting down airlines, retailers and legislatures, Canada’s nuclear industry rapidly put in place business contingency plans developed nearly 20 years ago after the SARS epidemic. And, by all accounts, they worked.

Indeed, key industry players had long ago socked away tons of personal protective equipment (PPE) and developed “what-if” disaster plans that helped the country’s nuclear power plants, uranium mines, research reactors, and nuclear waste disposal sites roll with the pandemic punch.

And yet, as the pandemic shut down one industry after another this spring, senior staff at the country’s nuclear industry regulator worried that their ability and the ability of those they regulate to guarantee the safety of Canadians might have been put at risk. Continue Reading →

Are Radioactive Diamond Batteries a Cure for Nuclear Waste? – by Daniel Oberhaus (Wired Magazine – August 31, 2020)

https://www.wired.com/

Researchers are developing a new battery powered by lab-grown gems made from reformed nuclear waste. If it works, it will last thousands of years.

IN THE SUMMER of 2018, a hobby drone dropped a small package near the lip of Stromboli, a volcano off the coast of Sicily that has been erupting almost constantly for the past century.

As one of the most active volcanoes on the planet, Stromboli is a source of fascination for geologists, but collecting data near the roiling vent is fraught with peril.

So a team of researchers from the University of Bristol built a robot volcanologist and used a drone to ferry it to the top of the volcano, where it could passively monitor its every quake and quiver until it was inevitably destroyed by an eruption. Continue Reading →

China poised to overtake US in nuclear power by 2030 – by Kotaro Fukuoka (Nikkei Asian Review – August 31, 2020)

https://asia.nikkei.com/

TOKYO — China is on track to surpass the U.S. as the world’s top producer of nuclear energy as early as 2030, reflecting hesitance to build new capacity in Japan and Western nations even as emerging economies move ahead.

China’s total nuclear power generation capacity, including reactors under construction and in planning, came to 108,700 megawatts as of April, more than America’s 105,120 MW, according to the World Nuclear Association, an industry group.

The trend reflects diverging approaches to nuclear power after the March 2011 Fukushima meltdowns in Japan. While the U.S., Europe and Japan grew risk averse in response to public fears, emerging nations have been keener. Continue Reading →

State environmental agency requires stricter monitoring of uranium mine near Grand Canyon – by Scott Buffon (Arizona Daily Sun – August 26, 2020)

https://azdailysun.com/

Public outcry pushed an Arizona environmental agency to require Canyon Mine, a uranium mine near the Grand Canyon, to apply for a more strict aquifer protection permit.

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) denied a general permit for Canyon Mine, owned by Canadian-based Energy Fuels Resources, after reviewing feedback from the public and reviewing the years of documents available on the mine.

Public comment cited allegations of cultural and environmental damage to water stores, wildlife and land to demand the department issue the stricter permit for the purpose of closing down the mine in September 2019. Continue Reading →

Do any Liberals still support Canadian resources? – by Brad Wall (National Post – August 25, 2020)

https://nationalpost.com/

If properly supported, Canada’s resource sector and Canadian agriculture will be leaders in the recovery

Were there an official committee of the federal cabinet constituted of those members who were fiscally conservative, economy-focused and supported the Canadian resource sector, they might only need an e-bike built for two to accommodate in-person meetings.

Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino may be one of them and, hope against hope, the new finance minister may take the other seat.

Only after watching her approach to trade and, more recently, Western alienation, did I come to this view. Continue Reading →

Grand Canyon will not be mined, says Uranium Producers of America (MiningWeekly.com – August 21, 2020)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

The Uranium Producers of America has denied news reports that imply that the Grand Canyon National Park will be opened up for uranium mining, labelling such articles as disinformation.

The Obama administration in 2012 banned new uranium mining claims around the Grand Canyon National Park for 20 years.

Reports continue to do the rounds that the Trump administration, which has been active in promoting domestic uranium mining, is open to projects near the Grand Canyon. Continue Reading →

The uranium giant stirs – by Leon Louw (Why Africa – August 12, 2020)

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With the price of uranium on the up, and demand expected to increase substantially in the next few years, Namibia’s spectacular uranium deposits are back in the news.

Several large uranium projects that were put on ice after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan in 2011, are being revived and looks as attractive as they did ten years ago.

Australian mining company Bannerman Resources recently completed the Scoping Study for their Etango Uranium project, which is said to be the world’s largest undeveloped uranium deposit in the world. Etango will be a conventional open pit and heap leach processing operation with an initial throughput of eight million tonnes per annum (8Mtpa). Continue Reading →

‘Hell To Pay’ Sheds New Light On A-Bomb Decision (NPR.org – January 16, 2020)

https://www.npr.org/

The atomic bombs that ended World War II killed — by some estimates — more than 200,000 people. In the decades since 1945, there has been a revisionist debate over the decision to drop the bombs.

Did the U.S. decide to bomb in order to avoid a land invasion that might have killed millions of Americans and Japanese? Or did it drop the bomb to avoid the Soviet army coming in and sharing the spoils of conquering Japan? Were the prospects of a land invasion even more destructive than the opening of the nuclear age?

D.M. Giangreco, formerly an editor for Military Review, has taken advantage of declassified materials in both the U.S. and Japan to try to answer those questions. He talks with NPR’s Scott Simon about his new book, Hell to Pay: Operation DOWNFALL and the Invasion of Japan, 1945-1947. Continue Reading →