Rosatom awaits SA govt decision on nuclear power

Engineering News 28 June 2013.

Russian State-owned nuclear company Rosatom was awaiting the South African government’s decision regarding the nuclear aspect of its Integrated Resource Plan (IRP2010), as well as Russia’s role in this regard, deputy director-general Kirill Komarovsaid on Thursday.

In April, the South African government indicated that it was set on pursuing its plan, contained in the IRP2010, to construct new nuclear power plants (NPPs) and increase the country’s amount of nuclear-generated electricity to 9.6 GW by 2030. This is in part to help meet South Africa’s growing electricity needs and to reduce the country’s high greenhouse-gas emissions…


Rosatom offers emerging nations nuclear package: paper

Planet Ark 14 May 2013.

Russia’s state-owned nuclear company Rosatom is offering a special package deal to build and operate nuclear power stations abroad in a bid to win business from developing countries, a company official was quoted on Monday as saying.

The offer to “Build, Own, Operate” (BOO), also includes financing to countries seeking to build nuclear plants.

(Contributor’s note: Now that has a good ring to it – “BOO!” – Build, own, operate. This would be a world first – where a company is prepared to take on the risk of building, owning and operating a nuclear plant! I’ll believe this when I see it – more likely our Eskom will own and operate the nuclear plants and we, the taxpayers will take the risk – for the next 60 years.)

Rosatom, a major competitor for groups like Areva, Toshiba-owned Westinghouse and Japan’s Mitsubishi Corp. has built nuclear reactors abroad in the past, but has so far handed over their operation to domestic utilities…


Russia to help SA with nuclear power

IOL News 17 May 2013.

Johannesburg – President Jacob Zuma and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday discussed plans for Russia to sell passenger aircraft to South Africa and to help it create a nuclear industry…..

This referred to Russian plans to bid for the contract to build six nuclear power plants if the South African government goes ahead with its giant proposed project.

Russian officials had earlier said Russia was prepared to help South Africa enrich uranium to make the fuel for these reactors in South Africa, rather than importing it…


Out with the old and in with the new? The rhetoric of new nuclear

Kate Pond | 15 May 2013 | Carbon Brief

There might be a new generation of reactors – referred to in industry and politics as ‘new nuclear’ – but the rhetoric used to promote them is strikingly similar to previous generations.

The rhetoric of ‘new nuclear’ is specifically designed to distinguish Generation III (and 3+) reactors from previous generation reactors, or ‘old nuclear’ for the sake of argument. However, closer examination shows that the roots of nuclear rhetoric in the present day can be traced as far back as 1901. Continue reading

Minister ignores opposition calls to keep coal power plants

SAPA | 14 May 2013 | M&G Online

Developing nuclear power stations carries “tremendous benefits” for South Africa, Energy Minister Dipuo Peters has said on Tuesday.

Opening debate in the National Assembly on her department’s R6.6-billion budget for this year, Peters told MPs that many of the country’s older coal-fired power plants would be retired and “fall away around 2023”.

Nuclear-generated power was the best replacement to guarantee the country could meet its base load demand, she added. Continue reading

‘We are nowhere near advertising the nuclear tender’

Engineering News 9 May 2013.

South Africa’s Energy Minister Dipuo Peters has again stressed South Africa’s phased approach to making a decision on new nuclear capacity – an approach guided by a desire to mitigate the risks and maximise benefits to the country.

Her director-general Nelisiwe Magubane added that the country, was, thus, “nowhere near advertising the tender”.

Speaking at the signing of procurement and implementation agreements for 19 more renewable-energy projects on Thursday, Peters said the nuclear plan would be presented for Cabinet approval in digestible components.

The first component had been Cabinet’s endorsement of Eskom as the owner/operator of any new nuclear facilities that might be constructed.

The current version of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity stated that South Africa would build 9 600 MW of new nuclear capacity by 2030. However, it had been acknowledged that that schedule could not be met, owing to delays in finalising the plan.

In addition, a new IRP would be published before the end of the year, which would probably take account of the lower-than-anticipated growth in demand for electricity since the publication of the 2010 to 2030 version, as well as the broad-based appeal for more gas to be added into the generation road map’s mix…

More …

Cabinet set on nuclear plan, with Eskom at the helm

THE Cabinet remained “resolute” about developing South Africa’s nuclear energy capacity, Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Wednesday, and Eskom would be the operator of the government’s nuclear programme.

The minister’s unequivocal statement may help clear up confusion over the government’s intentions on nuclear energy, confusion that stemmed from conflicting signals given in recent times by various political leaders, officials and energy experts.

However, Mr Gigaba’s insistence that Eskom would be the operator of the programme will raise yet more questions…

(Contributor’s note: And on they go… Why doesn’t the Cabinet listen to some outside views  – have they forgotten about the PBMR and the Arms Deal?)