nuclear power too expensive

Is nuclear fission going to make a comeback and plug the gap in our energy needs? Will nuclear fusion ever become energetically viable?

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petertohen
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nuclear power too expensive

Post by petertohen »

Power from the new Hinkley C nuclear generator will be too expensive, the boss of one of the UK's biggest energy consumers has warned.

Jim Ratcliffe, whose company Ineos owns the Grangemouth plant in Scotland, told the BBC that UK manufacturers would find the price unaffordable.

The government has guaranteed a price of �92.50 per megawatt hour (Mwh).

Mr Ratcliffe said Ineos recently agreed a deal for nuclear power in France at 45 euros (�37.94) per Mwh.

The government has guaranteed that the new Hinkley station, being developed by France's EdF and backed by Chinese investors, can charge the �92.50 minimum price for 35 years.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25390456

So who the hell WILL be able to afford it?
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Potemkin Villager
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Re: nuclear power too expensive

Post by Potemkin Villager »

petertohen wrote:Power from the new Hinkley C nuclear generator will be too expensive, the boss of one of the UK's biggest energy consumers has warned.

Jim Ratcliffe, whose company Ineos owns the Grangemouth plant in Scotland, told the BBC that UK manufacturers would find the price unaffordable.

The government has guaranteed a price of �92.50 per megawatt hour (Mwh).

Mr Ratcliffe said Ineos recently agreed a deal for nuclear power in France at 45 euros (�37.94) per Mwh.

The government has guaranteed that the new Hinkley station, being developed by France's EdF and backed by Chinese investors, can charge the �92.50 minimum price for 35 years.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25390456

So who the hell WILL be able to afford it?
IMHO it will never run.

Given the world class arrogance and incompetence that lead to the appalling deal negotiated here just imagine how good Brexit is going to pan out.......
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Post by RenewableCandy »

I admire your optimism :(
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Post by vtsnowedin »

What other non CO2 emitting power source is available and reliable for under #92.50? Not just today but twenty years out.
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Post by fuzzy »

Tidal, which is why they are building more nuclear at Oldbury on the Severn - to continually stop a tidal barrage upsetting the local toffs and their wildfowl sanctuary.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

There is another thread discussing nuclear power and on it it is said that the driver for new nuclear in the UK is the requirement of the MOD for plutonium and the scientists and engineers capable of working with it for both weapons and power systems.

Perhaps the MOD budget should be raided for a subsidy for the rest of us on the cost of the electricity. Can't see that happening though as I also can't see the place ever being bought into commission. At the rate the economy is falling apart and the rate that Hinckley is being built it will never come into use before economic activity slumps.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

By the way, welcome to this forum Petertohen.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

fuzzy wrote:Tidal, which is why they are building more nuclear at Oldbury on the Severn - to continually stop a tidal barrage upsetting the local toffs and their wildfowl sanctuary.
As if digging up all that radioactive mud and dumping it on the other side of the estuary, heating the water with the cooling outfall and any low level radioactive escapes won't harm the birds and a bloody great lump of concrete reaching hundred of feet in the air won't upset the view for the toffs!!

And windmills would probably be even worse!!! (Emoticon with steam coming out of the ears)
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Post by woodburner »

fuzzy wrote:Tidal, which is why they are building more nuclear at Oldbury on the Severn - to continually stop a tidal barrage upsetting the local toffs and their wildfowl sanctuary.

Good. Almost anything is better than the destruction of yet another wildlife resource so people can run a load of unnecessary eletrical gadgets.
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Post by clv101 »

fuzzy wrote:Tidal, which is why they are building more nuclear at Oldbury on the Severn - to continually stop a tidal barrage upsetting the local toffs and their wildfowl sanctuary.
Hang on, tidal isn't less than £92.50/MWh. In fact the single biggest reason the Severn barrage hasn't been build after dozens of studies/designs spanning over a century is that it's simply very expensive!

I also don't think anyone is building new nuclear at the Oldbury site in order to stop the barrage! The barrage would be compatible with new nuclear build there, as it was with the original Magnox plant. In fact Horizon have said they'd build cooling towers at a new multi-GW build at Oldbury.
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Post by Potemkin Villager »

RenewableCandy wrote:I admire your optimism :(
Oh I try and keep my chin up! It seems it is not just nuclear power but the nuclear deterrent and the entire defense apparat of the uk that is too expensive!

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/201 ... port-finds

"The NAO said the cost of nuclear-related projects could destabilise the plan because of their size and complexity, noting that costs for the Dreadnought and Astute submarine projects had risen by £941m in one year. "

What! A billion pound overrun on two subs in one year!

and my favourite gem in this litany of fantasy budgeting

"According to the report, the MoD failed to factor in the falling value of the pound, which could result in costs being £4.6bn higher than anticipated. The ministry had also used the wrong exchange rate to calculate costs, using rates that were 24% higher than the dollar exchange rate and 2% higher than the euro rate."



:D :D :D :D
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Post by Eclipse »

Nuclear engineer Ed Pheil estimated the cost of nuclear for Australia with a great reactor, the CAP1400 Gen3+ reactor with passive safety.

"I would expect/guess $3B each if you ordered 50. China already has them down to <$4B each. If you built at 6 sites, 8 reactors each, for 48, or 5 sites, 10 reactors each, for 50, with shared services, like Canada and China do, but all reactors identical, at one site, this should save a LOT of money on shared infrastructure development and construction efficiencies. Direct once through ocean cooling, no cooling towers. This would ease refueling coordination. Remember, the nuclear part is the cheap part, the balance of plant and regulator/regulation impacts are the expensive parts. One site license for 8 or 10 reactors, saves on regulation costs."

When you get power down under $3bn per 1.4GW, that's just over $2bn / GW. I'd love to see a (non-hydro) renewables + storage system that worked that cheap.

Then next gen reactors that avoid high-pressure water avoid expensive single-cast reactor cores. THorCon are working on a super-cheap molten salt reactor (not breeder) that will come in as some of the cheapest electricity ever, and that's baseload.
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Post by fuzzy »

So thats $2 a watt. About twice the price of solar panels, with all storage and cleanup costs dumped on the state.
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Post by Eclipse »

fuzzy wrote:So thats $2 a watt. About twice the price of solar panels, with all storage and cleanup costs dumped on the state.
No no no! You misunderstand. The decommissioning costs are built into the price of the electricity, and what storage are you imagining when breeder reactors eat nuclear waste?

The REAL problem is that solar clean up isn't costed! That's the irony here. First of all, George Monbiot has raised that solar PV is often middle-class welfare funded by the poor in govt discounts and rebates. Then there's the overwhelming fact that solar is vastly too expensive because of the storage. No one can fund that! It's just too vast. But solar might have a good niche in the middle of the day in topping up a nuclear baseload grid when maybe more future robot-EV taxis need to pull over for a quick topup. But only if the solar cleanup costs are put into the price, just like nuclears already is.

But it gets worse. Even 'clean' power like solar PV uses 15 times more building material and 5000 times more land than nuclear. https://tinyurl.com/y2n45cz9 It also quite worryingly produces 300 times the waste per unit of energy than nuclear! https://tinyurl.com/ybpwgrsc By 2050 Australia could have 1.5 MILLION tons of solar e-waste to try and recycle, and we currently don't include that cost in the price of solar installations. https://tinyurl.com/y6clgxa8 Indeed, renewables expert Matthew Stocks (rightly) demanded I show the cost to decommission nuclear power plants and store the waste. But when asked, he admitted he hadn't done the same for solar! Why does solar 'cost modelling' not include the *huge* task of cleaning up and recycling 300 times the waste? https://tinyurl.com/y8vwdgp4

"Clean" solar is not so clean. But the real worry is EROEI - Energy Returned over Energy Invested - which measures the energy profit of a power plant after all the energy it cost to build it in the first place. Renewables have an OK EROEI on their own. But what about a 100% renewable grid? What about the energy to build all those pumped-hydro dams as 'batteries' for when the sun goes down and wind goes quiet? The figures on this paper might be a little old, but show that renewables + storage may not even be a high enough energy source to run our world. https://tinyurl.com/ya3c3esp Dr James Hansen — the climatologist that diagnosed our climate problem — says believing in 100% renewables is like believing in the Easter Bunny or Tooth Fairy. https://tinyurl.com/yclaf2sn
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Post by fuzzy »

I am not sure what you mean by recycling. Solar panels are just glass with some small impurities which are toxic and some attached fittings. You could dump millions of tonnes of old solar panels in the sea with little effect. If there is money in recycling them, then some big business will get the profit. A man and his donkey could clean up solar panels. Making semiconductors is energy intensive and uses nasty chemicals. But someone somewhere else wants to do it. It doesn't use up any land for a solar farm because the land is still there. Mining and intensive farming use up land.

Volume of waste also needs to be x lifespan of hazard and complexity of storage. I think we are all interested in any new nuclear developments. I agree that if life is to stay as convenient as now, we need a baseload electricity supply. Maybe nuclear will be inevitable for that reason. I am expecting life to have far less convenience in the future.
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