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The global nuclear industry and governments must work together to make it easier for those countries wishing to launch nuclear energy programmes in order to decarbonise their energy system, writes Milton Caplan, president of MZConsulting Inc and chair of the World Nuclear Association Economics Working Group.

Date: Thursday, 14 October 2021
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A group of 46 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from 18 countries has written to Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, calling for the inclusion of nuclear energy in the EU taxonomy for sustainable investments. The exclusion of nuclear, they say, would promote a strategy that is "clearly inadequate" to decarbonise the region's economy.

Date: Thursday, 08 April 2021
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A "solid group" of 10-12 countries building nuclear power plants for the first time will emerge in the next decade, International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi told OECD Nuclear Energy Agency Director General William Magwood in a WebChat on 16 October.

Date: Tuesday, 20 October 2020
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Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on 1 October ordered energy authorities to study the possible use of the mothballed Bataan nuclear power plant and to consult the concerned communities.

Date: Tuesday, 06 October 2020
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Philippines Energy Ministry said on 29 July that President Rodrigo Duterte had created an inter-agency panel to study the adoption of a national nuclear energy policy. Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi has long advocated the use of nuclear power, despite public concerns over safety. 

Date: Saturday, 01 August 2020
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Southeast Asian country dealing with precarious supply and high electricity costs The mothballed Bataan nuclear power station north of Manila. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons. The Philippines has taken a step towards introducing nuclear power, its energy minister said on Wednesday, after president Rodrigo Duterte created an inter-agency committee to study the adoption of a national nuclear energy policy.

In a July 24 executive order made public on Wednesday, Mr Duterte created a committee to conduct the study, indicating openness to reviving the country’s nuclear energy ambitions.

As power demand soars in what has for years been among the world’s fastest-growing economies, energy minister Alfonso Cusi has been advocating the use of nuclear power.

Nuclear is seen as a potential answer to the Philippines’ twin problems of precarious supply and Southeast Asia’s highest electricity costs.

Date: Thursday, 30 July 2020
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The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will provide diagnostic kits, equipment and training in nuclear-derived detection techniques to countries asking for assistance in tackling the worldwide spread of the novel coronavirus causing COVID-19. Fourteen countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean have requested assistance with the diagnostic technique, known as Real-Time Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR). "The Agency takes pride in its ability to respond quickly to crises, as we did in the recent past with the Ebola, Zika and African Swine Fever viruses," IAEA Director General Mariano Grossi said in a statement to the IAEA Board of Governors. "Contributing to international efforts to deal with the coronavirus will remain a priority for me as long as the outbreak persists."

Date: Wednesday, 11 March 2020
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The impetus for new build is being spurred by a need to reduce reliance on polluting coal China has 10 nuclear units under construction including two Generation III Hualong One plants at Fangchenggang. China, with its state nuclear companies backed by a government hungry for development, is the most active nation for building new nuclear power plants. That trend that is likely to continue, although confirming lucrative export deals for its reactor technology still runs far behind the pace set by Russia, which says it had 39 reactors under construction or planned overseas as of 2018.

This compares to only two reactors under construction overseas by China, both in Pakistan, although in the UK China has a stake in EDF’s Hinkley Point C project and plans for Chinese technology at Bradwell B. At Sizewell C in Suffolk EDF wants to build a clone of Hinkley Point C if it can attract enough private investment. CGN holds a 20% share.

The government has said it wants to build 30 reactors overseas by 2030. China and Russia both see Africa, where about 600 million people live without electricity, as something of a golden fleece and are pursuing nuclear agreements, which lay the groundwork for new-build, in a number of African nations. Small modular reactors and floating reactors could be an option for isolated areas. China has already said it is close to starting work on its first floating unit, but reliable details are few and far between.

The impetus for nuclear power in China is increasingly due to air pollution from coal-fired plants. To meet its climate goal as stipulated in the Paris agreement, China will need to reduce its coal power capacity by 40% over the next decade, according to Global Energy Monitor’s analysis. At present, this seems unrealistic. In addition to roughly 1,000 GW of existing coal capacity, China has 121 GW of coal plants under construction, which is more than is being built in the rest of the world combined.

Date: Friday, 24 January 2020
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The Philippines' Department of Energy (DOE) today received the International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA's) report on Phase 1 of its Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) mission. Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said the country will now prepare a plan of action for the introduction of nuclear energy.

Date: Thursday, 31 October 2019
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South Korea's Nuclear Safety and Security Commission on 18 June approved the restart of unit 3 at the Shin Kori NPP, which was shut down in January for scheduled maintenance. The decision was taken after planned maintenance was completed at Shin-Kori 3, an Ap-1400 pressurised water reactor. South Korea currently operates 24 power reactors that generate 27% percent of its total electricity. However, Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power’s (KHNP’s) board of directors recently decided to shut down unit 1 at the Wolsong NPP, South Korea’s second oldest reactor, before the end of its lifetime. KHNP CEO Chung Jae-hoon said this is in line with the government’s plans to reduce nuclear power in the national energy mix. Wolsong 1, a 657MWe Candu 6 unit, began commercial operation in 1983. Its 30-year operational licence expired in 2012 but was extended for 10 years to 2022. KHNP said its decision was based on the "uncertain economic viability" of its continued operation and recent low operating performance.

Date: Thursday, 21 June 2018
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