To counter the extremely high gas prices caused by the Russia-Ukraine crisis the IEA has proposed turning thermostats down in households to use less gas. The IEA estimated lowering the heating by just 1°C would reduce gas demand by around 10 bn cubic metres a year, or 7% of Europe’s annual imports from Russia. Aurore Julien at the University of East London looks at quantifiable past attempts around the world to get citizens to cut their energy … [Read more...]
Why was Nuclear side-lined at COP26?
James Conca is extremely disappointed that nuclear did not get a serious hearing by negotiators at COP26. Meanwhile in the "Green Zone" (for the general public), the World Nuclear Association had all of its members' applications to establish exhibits rejected. Why? If public opposition is a main obstacle, the nuclear industry should be given an opportunity to argue its case, explain how it is one of the safest energy sources available, and … [Read more...]
Nuclear: can Silicon Carbide fuel rod cladding improve safety, performance?
Public concern about the safety of nuclear plants is driving research into ways to make the fuel rods more able to survive the kind of unexpected calamity experienced in Fukushima in 2011. Following the tsunami, hydrogen explosions were caused by the conventional zirconium-based fuel cladding interacting with the high temperature steam produced when the safety system failed and coolant water heated up. Writing for MIT, Leda Zimmerman describes … [Read more...]
What if Germany wasn’t shutting down Nuclear? Modelling Coal, Gas, Renewables, emissions, prices
Germany plans to shut down its entire nuclear fleet by 2022. Right now, of the original 17, only 7 are still running. The Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan of 2011 was the trigger for Germany’s abandonment of emissions-free nuclear as part of its clean energy goals. Maximilian Auffhammer at the Energy Institute at Haas reviews a paper by his colleagues that has modelled the whole-system effects of the shutdowns, then compared the results with a … [Read more...]