Power & Operations

New California law could fund Diablo Canyon life extension

July 6, 2022, 6:59AMNuclear News

The decision by the Department of Energy to revise its Civil Nuclear Credit Program—easing the path toward program qualification for California’s Diablo Canyon—was not the only promising news last week for advocates of the state’s sole operating nuclear power facility. On June 30, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation that could provide funding for Diablo Canyon in the event the state decides to keep the plant in operation beyond its slated 2025 closure date. Also in line for possible life extension under the measure are some of Southern California’s fossil fuel plants.

U.S. to provide $14 million for Romanian SMR study

July 5, 2022, 12:09PMNuclear News

At the recent G7 summit in Germany, President Biden and other world leaders launched the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment—described by the State Department as an effort “to narrow infrastructure gaps around the world, strengthen the global economy and supply chains, and advance international security through strategic investments.”

A new “cooperative framework” to commercialize advanced nuclear technologies

July 5, 2022, 9:30AMANS Nuclear Cafe


Another call on the Western world to use nuclear power as a way to achieve energy independence from Russia has been sounded, this time by Nicolas Mazzucchi, a research fellow at the Foundation for Strategic Research in Paris.

As readers of Nuclear Newswire know, several such arguments have been made since the Russian invasion of Ukraine prompted tough sanctions against Russia by Western governments, including restrictions on imports of Russian oil and natural gas. Although designed to harm the Russian economy, these sanctions have also contributed to high energy prices and other economic problems in Western Europe and the United States.

In a recent issue of Nature, Mazzucchi builds on the point that more nuclear power—especially from advanced technologies—offers a way to “avoid another situation like that in Ukraine.” However, he also argues that increased international cooperation is needed to commercialize these technologies.

IEA calls for major role for nuclear power in clean energy systems

July 1, 2022, 7:06AMNuclear News

Nuclear power can play a significant role in helping countries solve the twin crises of energy and climate and securely transition to future energy systems dominated by renewables, according to a new report, Nuclear Power and Secure Energy Transitions: From Today’s Challenges to Tomorrow’s Clean Energy Systems, released June 30 by the International Energy Agency (IEA). The message is clear: Nuclear power can reduce reliance on imported fossil fuels, cut carbon dioxide emissions, and stabilize electricity systems; and building sustainable and clean energy systems will be harder, riskier, and more expensive without nuclear.

Entergy settles with state PSC for $300M over Grand Gulf rate issues

June 30, 2022, 3:04PMNuclear News
The Grand Gulf nuclear power plant in Port Gibson, Miss. (Photo: Entergy)

The Mississippi Public Services Commission has announced a $300 million settlement with Entergy Mississippi—the largest settlement in the MPSC’s history—ending the state’s part in multistate Federal Energy Regulatory Commission proceedings involving Grand Gulf plant customer rate impacts.

Nuclear development in the West needs new, better financing models

June 30, 2022, 12:03PMANS Nuclear Cafe

The prospects for new nuclear energy construction in the Western world is the subject of a recent The Economist article, “Energy security gives climate-friendly nuclear-power plants a new appeal.” The article also explores the difficulties that EDF Energy has been experiencing in constructing its EPRs in Europe.

Saskatchewan picks BWRX-300 for potential deployment

June 29, 2022, 9:28AMNuclear News
A cutaway image of the BWRX-300. (Image: GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy)

Following an assessment of several small modular reactor technologies, SaskPower has chosen GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy’s (GEH’s) BWRX-300 SMR for potential deployment in Saskatchewan in the mid-2030s, the Canadian utility announced earlier this week.

EDF makes latest move to build EPRs in Poland

June 28, 2022, 12:00PMNuclear News

Électricité de France has signed cooperation agreements with five Polish companies as it continues its efforts to be named the large-reactor supplier for Poland’s incipient nuclear power program.

Polish firms Polimex Mostostal, Sefako, Tele-Fonika Kable, Uniserv, and ZRE Katowice inked the pacts at the fifth Polish-French Nuclear Industry Day in Ołtarzew, Poland. According to EDF, the event was held to foster collaboration between Polish and French companies in support of the utility giant’s offer to deliver four to six EPRs for the Polish program.

CNSC renews Point Lepreau license for 10 years

June 28, 2022, 7:07AMNuclear News
Point Lepreau nuclear power plant. (Photo: Andre Bussiere)

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has renewed the operating license of the reactor at the Point Lepreau nuclear plant for a period of 10 years. As a result, the facility’s 660-MWe CANDU-6 unit, the five-year license for which was set to expire on June 30, is now permitted to operate until the end of June 2032. License holder NB Power had requested an unprecedented 25-year extension.

How is EPRI supporting plant life extensions?

June 27, 2022, 3:00PMNuclear News

Many nuclear plants have operating licenses that extend beyond their original term of 40 years to 60 years, and many are expected to operate to 80 years or even beyond. The Electric Power Research Institute helped formulate the technical basis for up to 80 years of nuclear power plant operation. Based on this experience, EPRI has developed a systematic approach to maintaining the technical basis for long-term operation.


Growing and sustaining a nuclear team

June 27, 2022, 9:30AMNuclear NewsTanya Hamilton

Tanya Hamilton

How do you grow a nuclear team? At Duke Energy, we do it by being reliable, innovative, and forward looking. Since 1967, we’ve been growing our nuclear generation to produce life-essential, carbon-free electricity for millions of customers in our communities. Safe, reliable, cost-effective nuclear generation.

Nuclear generation is an essential component of Duke Energy’s overall climate strategy, with the goal of net-zero carbon emissions from electric generation by midcentury. Net zero is achieved when greenhouse gas emissions are counterbalanced and removed from the atmosphere, achieving “climate neutrality.” Duke’s nuclear fleet produces more than 50 percent of the electricity consumed by our Carolinas customers and more than 80 percent of the carbon-free electricity generated company-wide. In 2021, our nuclear fleet matched its record capacity factor of 95.7 percent and avoided the release of 50 million tons of carbon dioxide.

Groups prod G7 to support nuclear for climate, security

June 27, 2022, 7:00AMNuclear News

A group of six organizations have issued a statement to world leaders currently gathered at the G7 summit in Germany that highlights nuclear energy’s strengths in addressing the current global challenges of environmental sustainability and energy security and urges additional support.

Georgia Power sued by Vogtle co-owners

June 24, 2022, 9:30AMNuclear News
Vogtle Units 3 and 4, with Units 1 and 2 in the background. (Photo: Georgia Power)

Both Oglethorpe Power Corporation and the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG), two co-owners of the Vogtle nuclear plant, have filed lawsuits against Southern Company subsidiary Georgia Power, the facility’s primary owner.

Oglethorpe and MEAG are 30 percent and 22.7 percent owners, respectively, of Vogtle. Georgia Power holds a 45.7 percent share. (Dalton Utilities, which owns 1.6 percent of the plant, is not involved in the suits.)

FPL files report, asks NRC to reinstate Turkey Point’s 20-year subsequent renewal term

June 24, 2022, 7:00AMNuclear News
Turkey Point nuclear plant. (Image: FPL)

Florida Power & Light (FPL) has submitted a supplemental environmental report to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in support of the subsequent renewed licenses for Turkey Point Units 3 and 4. According to a June 22 NRC press release, FPL’s report was submitted on June 10 to satisfy a “deficiency” in subsequent license renewal applications (SLRA) that rely on the generic environmental impact statement (GEIS) on license renewal and is being reviewed prior to docketing. William D. Maher, director of nuclear licensing projects at FPL, submitted the report, noting that “FPL’s review did not identify any information materially changing the impact assessments” in the NRC’s supplemental GEIS for the Turkey Point licenses.

House Appropriations panel approves $56 billion energy spending bill

June 22, 2022, 3:01PMNuclear News

A draft fiscal year 2023 Energy and Water Development bill, released Monday by the House Appropriations Committee, received the imprimatur of the Energy and Water Development (EWD) Subcommittee yesterday and now moves to the full committee for consideration.

The measure, totaling $56.275 billion—$3.4 billion more than the FY 2022 enacted level—includes funding for the Department of Energy, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Reclamation, and a number of independent agencies, including the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Barakah-3 license issued; fuel loading starts

June 21, 2022, 12:01PMNuclear News
Barakah-3 (Photo: Nawah Energy Company)

The United Arab Emirates’ Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) has issued the operating license for the Barakah nuclear plant’s Unit 3 reactor, the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation announced yesterday. In addition, following receipt of the license, ENEC subsidiary Nawah Energy Company began the process of loading fuel assemblies into the unit, according to the announcement.

Olkiluoto-3 start pushed to end of year

June 20, 2022, 3:05PMNuclear News
Finland’s Olkiluoto-3. (Photo: TVO)

Teollisuuden Voima Oyj (TVO), owner and operator of Finland’s Olkiluoto nuclear power plant, has announced a further delay to the start of regular electricity generation at Unit 3. Commercial operation is now projected to begin this December, rather than the previously announced September. A report from Reuters puts the date at December 10.

According to TVO, material that had detached from the steam guide plates was found in the turbine’s steam reheater last month, requiring inspection and repair work.

Nuclear energy in infrastructure law

June 17, 2022, 2:55PMNuclear NewsMatt Crozat

President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) into law in November 2021. Commonly known as the “bipartisan infrastructure bill,” this legislation included significant investments in civilian nuclear energy in the U.S. along with a range of other spending initiatives. The law directs funding to preserve the operation of nuclear plants facing the prospect of early closure, demonstrate new advanced reactors, and explore the ability of nuclear energy to produce hydrogen for other energy applications. Additional incentives to retain and expand the use of nuclear energy are still being considered in Congress, but the IIJA is law, and the Department of Energy is beginning the process of implementing its key provisions.

X-energy partners with Maryland for coal-to-nuclear study

June 17, 2022, 9:30AMNuclear News

The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) has awarded grants to Rockville, Md.–based X-energy—developer of the Xe-100 small modular reactor—and Frostburg State University for a collaborative study to determine the potential for siting an SMR at a state coal site. A joint analysis of the study’s findings is to be delivered to MEA later this year.