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View Diary: Ready for This? Last Month 100% of New Electrical Capacity in the US came from Renewable Sources (187 comments)

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  •  of course nuclear power will become dormant (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, pgm 01

    The last new nuclear plant to come online in the U.S. was in the mid 1980s.  The youngest nuclear power plants in the U.S. are around 30 years old.  Most are in the 40+ range.

    These plants were originally licensed for 40 years, and some are getting 20 year extensions.  But even these plants with extended licenses may not be feasible/economical to run.  For instance, the Kewaunee Nuclear Power Plant in Wisconsin recently announced it would shut down this year, despite having previously obtained a 20 year license extension allowing it to run through 2033.

    Crystal River Nuclear Plant (in Florida) also recently announced it will shutdown this year, after a botched 20% power upgrade construction project.  They also have years left on their license.

    Many nuke plants will shut down before their license extension expires, due to the major capital expenses for replacing steam generators and reactor pressure vessel covers.  San Onofre (in California) will likely never restart for this reason.

    •  and many more are coming online (0+ / 0-)

      gen 4  plants are better designed and give more output

      A minor (percentage wise) part of our power needs? Yes but not dormant and even that is 20-40 years down the road really

      In the time that I have been given,
      I am what I am

      by duhban on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 05:47:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Only 1 nuke is currently under construction (0+ / 0-)

        About two dozen proposed projects have submitted combined construction/operation license applications to the NRC for new nukes.  Some have obtained the license, yet others have suspended their application review after Fukushima.

        But only 1 project is currently under construction -- Watts Bar Unit 2 (Tennessee).  All of the other projects are merely applying for licenses, and planning for future construction.  The cost uncertainty of construction makes all of the projects very risky to ratepayers and bondholders.  I'd be surprised if more than a handful actually get built.

        Regardless of calling these "gen 4 plants", the new proposed projects are the same old designs from 30 years ago: ABWRs, AP1000s, etc.  They still utilize same zirconium clad fuel, which risks hydrogen explosions in case of extreme temperatures from a loss of cooling accident.  This was the fatal flaw at Fukushima... the problem is the zirconium.

        •  I'm talking about (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          freshwater dan

          actual gen 4 reactors that can 'fast process' thorium which seems to be something different then what you are talking about

          You know we largely agree? In the long term I'd be surprised if nuclear accounts for even 10% of the nations' power but that's not dormant

          In the time that I have been given,
          I am what I am

          by duhban on Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 07:13:42 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

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