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Re-energising the nuclear industry

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PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 2:27 pm    Post subject: Re-energising the nuclear industry Reply with quote

BBC News - 13/05/08

Nuclear power has a key part to play in providing the UK with reliable, low carbon electricity in the future, argues Peter Bleasdale. In this week's Green Room, he says a new National Nuclear Laboratory will provide the research and training needed after decades of neglect and decline.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The UK government is to set up a new Office of Nuclear Development within the Department for Business to help promote a new generation of nuclear power plants for the UK, the government said Thursday. The office will support cross-governmental work on nuclear.

And Secretary of State for Business John Hutton will chair a new Nuclear Development Forum bringing government together with industry to discuss the key issues. This will be similar to the government/industry PILOT task force for the oil industry.

The new office and forum were announced as part of a nuclear action plan Thursday. The UK government needs to fill a looming capacity gap of 20 GW or more of generation that will be lost in coming decades as ageing coal and nuclear power plants are shut down.

With coal contributing to global warming and gas prices reaching new highs on a daily basis, the government is keen for nuclear power to fill the gap.

Other elements of the plan include publication of the draft criteria for deciding on the siting of new nuclear power stations, to be consulted upon shortly.
Hutton is presenting Thursday at a conference in London to promote investment in nuclear. "The UK government has the ambition and commitment to build and maintain the best market in the world for companies to do business in nuclear power," he said in a statement.

"The UK must aim to become the world's number one location for new nuclear investment--benefiting from the thousands of jobs and billions of pounds worth of business that this could potentially bring to our country."
Other aspects of work to be carried out, said the government, include measures to improve recruitment and retention of staff at the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate.

Also Thursday the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is to publish its new White Paper, Managing Radioactive Waste Safely: A Framework for Implementing Geological Disposal. This is the next step in putting into place the long term solution to the UK's existing higher activity radioactive waste, the government said.

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