Tag Archives: Nuclear

Russia to build 2 nuclear power plants in Iran

Russian experts will help the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) construct two new nuclear power plants in the country’s southern city of Bushehr, according to Iran’s Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian.

“The contract has been signed between the AEOI and Russia, and includes building two 1,000-megawatt nuclear power plants, the construction of which is about to start,” said Chitchian.

can use Iranian military bases ‘on case by case basis,’ confirms https://www.rt.com/news/382523-russia-iran-bases-use/?utm_source=browser&utm_medium=aplication_chrome&utm_campaign=chrome#.WNoi8dXwm_U.twitter 

Photo published for Russia can use Iranian military bases ‘on case by case basis,’ Tehran confirms — RT News

Russia can use Iranian military bases ‘on case by case basis,’ Tehran confirms — RT News

Russia can use Iranian military bases for airstrikes targeting terrorists in Syria on a “case by case basis,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told Reuters.

rt.com

Russian energy major Gazprom has sealed a cooperation agreement with its Iranian counterpart for the development of local gas deposits.

During his visit to Moscow last month, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani highlighted the importance of the energy sector in bilateral relations and the possible creation of a free trade zone between Iran and the Eurasian Economic Union that includes Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.

From RT

Posted by The NON-Conformist

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Nuclear threats in US worse than previously known — study

Conflicting with a prior industry study, a new analysis claims 96 nuclear facilities in the US are less safe than reported, citing risks such as terrorism and sabotage. The study says there remain lessons to be learned from the Fukushima disaster.
Neglect of the risks posed by used reactor fuel, or spent nuclear fuel, contained in 96 above ground, aquamarine pools could cost the US economy $700 billion, cause cancer in tens of thousands of people as well as compel the relocation of some 3.5 million people from an area larger than New Jersey, a study released May 20 finds.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s study, ‘Lessons Learned from the Fukushima Nuclear Accident for Improving Safety and Security of US Nuclear Plants,’ is the second installment of a two-part study ordered by Congress on the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan. It not only cites, but also outright challenges a 2014 study by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the US industry’s regulator and enforcer of safety standards.

The spent fuel, The Academies’ study recommends, is safer in dry casks rather than pools, because of the risk of leaks, drawing water away from the irradiated nuclear rods. An accident, terrorist attack or malicious employee all pose greater dangers to the pools, the study says.

Aside from calling on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to offer a better evaluation of the health risks posed, The Academies study conducted by 17 engineers, nuclear physicists and other scientists demands the commission fulfill a 10-year-old promise to put together an impartial review of the surveillance and security policies on spent nuclear fuel.

“Even with the recommendations that the Academies’ board has put together,” Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Scott Burnell responded, “we continue to conclude that spent fuel is being stored safely and securely in the US.”

“Nothing in the report causes immediate concern,” Burnell added, although the commission is planning a more formal follow-up later this year, according to The Center for Public Integrity.

Congress felt compelled to fund the study on Japan’s natural-turned-nuclear disaster to help prevent a similar accident from occurring in the US. On March 11, 2011, the Daiichi nuclear plant in Fukushima was thrashed by an earthquake and tsunami, leaving three reactors without power or coolants, which resulted in their radioactive cores melting down.

Pure luck kept the disaster from becoming even worse, The Acadamies found. Instead of Daiichi’s highly radioactive rods being exposed to oxygen, which would have sent over 13 million people packing from as far as 177 miles south in Tokyo, a leak happened to be situated between a fuel rod pool and a reactor core, which sent just enough coolant to keep the vulnerable rods from rising above the water. In the end, 470,000 people were evacuated and the still ongoing cleanup is estimated to cost about $93 billion.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s 2014 study put the highest odds of an earthquake happening near spent fuel storage at one in 10 million years, boasting that “spent fuel pools are likely to withstand severe earthquakes without leaking,” while the odds of a terrorist attack or internal subversion were deemed incalculable and left out of any risk assessment.

Calling that cost-benefit analysis “deeply flawed,” The Academies panel member Frank von Hippel, also an emeritus professor and senior research physicist at Princeton University, complained that the commission’s study also left out the impact on property contamination in a 50-mile radius of an accident, tourism rates and the economy, The Center for Public Integrity reported.

The new analysis also calls for new officially designated risk assessments of safety and financial impacts at the federal level as well as what improvements aboveground dry casks may bring compared to pools. The latter is estimated to cost upwards of $4 billion by the industry.

From RT

Posted by The NON-Conformist

 

Netanyahu calls nuclear deal ‘mistake of historic proportions’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the nuclear deal announced by world powers and Iran on Tuesday a “mistake of historic proportions” and vowed to keep Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.

EPA ISRAEL NETANYAHU PRESSER POL GOVERNMENT ISR
Image: Ahikam SerI, EPA

“I call on all of Israel’s leaders to set aside petty politics and to unite around the most fateful issue for the security of the state of Israel,” Netanyahu said.

Speaking to reporters in Jerusalem later Tuesday, the Israeli leader said his nation is not bound by the deal and reserves the right to defend itself.

The deal makes the world a “much more dangerous place,” Netanyahu said, adding it will free up billions of dollars that Iran can use to support terrorism.

More from USA Today

Posted by Libergirl

Netanyahu’s Great Fear: Iran Will Comply With Nuclear Deal

Image: newsantiwar.com

Israeli officials have loudly and repeatedly condemned the Iran deal as insufficient, but those familiar with the situation have revealed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s great fear is not Iran violating the deal, but rather them abiding by it.

“Netanyahu said at the meeting it will be impossible to catch the Iranians cheating simply because they will not,” noted one of the officials. This is in direct contrast to his repeated claims Iran could not be trusted on the deal.

The big problem from the Israeli perspective is that this changes the status quo over the last 35 years, where new sanctions were easy and Israel could threaten to attack Iran all it wanted.

More from Newsantiwar.com

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Netanyahu: Speech Not Intended to Disrespect Obama

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed “regret” Monday that his address to a joint session of Congress has become politicized, but pledged to continue to criticize the emerging Iran nuclear agreement.

Addressing the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Washington, Netanyahu was greeted by the friendly audience with multiple standing ovations, saying he appreciates all that President Obama has done in support of his country.

“My speech is not intended to show any disrespect to President Obama or the esteemed office which he holds,” he said. Republicans invited Netanyahu to address Congress Tuesday without first consulting the White House in an breach of diplomatic protocol. The White House responded by refusing to meet with the Israeli leader, citing proximity to this month’s Israeli elections.

Netanyahu appeared to acknowledge that his address has become a distraction from the very talks he aims to criticize.

“You know never has so much been written about a speech that hasn’t been given,” he quipped. Even attendance at the Tuesday speech has become controversial, with a number of Democratic lawmakers pledging to boycott.

More from Time.com

Posted by Libergirl

 

Japan extends the Fukushima clean-up deadline to 2017

Plans to decontaminate six towns and villages close to Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant have to be delayed by up to three more years, officials say.

Tanks of radiation-contaminated water are seen at the Tokyo Electric Power Co's (Tepco) tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima prefecture in this file photo released by Kyodo on 1 March 2013
Image: Reuters

The clean-up of the exclusion zone around the crippled plant was initially due to be completed by next March.

More than 90,000 people remain unable to return home.

Fukushima has been hit by a series of toxic water leaks in recent months. The latest contamination was reported on Sunday after unexpectedly heavy rain.

Water with high levels of the toxic isotope Strontium-90 overflowed containment barriers around water tanks, operator Tepco said.

The tanks are being used to store contaminated cooling water from reactors damaged by the earthquake and tsunami of March 2011.

Cooling systems for reactors were knocked out, causing meltdowns at three of them.

More from BBC News Asia

 Posted by Libergirl

US nuclear plants vulnerable to 9/11-style terrorist attacks: report

he more than 100 nuclear reactors across the United States are inadequately prepared to repulse terrorist attacks, a new report warns.

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, or NRC, presently requires that energy plants are capable of preventing attacks carried out by five or six people, according to the report, entitled “Protecting US Nuclear Facilities from Terrorist Attack.”

The report, prepared by the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Project at the University of Texas, focuses on the terrorist attacks of 2001, and warns the NRC to prepare for something much bigger down the road.

The combined public and private security provided at the US’s 104 commercial nuclear reactors and three research reactors “is inadequate to defend against a maximum, credible, non-state adversary,” the researchers said, adding that private-sector nuclear facilities remain “less protected than government facilities that face similar risks of theft of fissile material or radiological sabotage, which makes no sense.”

There also remains the risk of attacks from “high-powered sniper rifles and rocket-propelled grenades,” the researchers said.

The report also draws particular attention to security at three research reactors, including one in Maryland that is situated 24 miles from the White House. These facilities are powered by highly-enriched uranium, which could be used to make nuclear weapons if the supplies fell into the hands of terrorists.

The US government has made some progress since September 11, 2001, when nuclear plants only had to protect against attacks by three people, according to Alan Kuperman, the project coordinator and a co-author of the report.

“That is a good sign of progress, but that does not address the concern we have about nuclear reactors,” Kuperman said.

Since 2001, the US nuclear industry has spent over $2 billion on enhanced security, the report said, adding “it is difficult to know if those enhancements have been adequate.”

A spokesman for the nuclear energy sector’s trade agency, the Nuclear Energy Institute, told Reuters that security at US nuclear facilities had improved markedly since 9/11, with a total of 9,000 armed officers guarding them.

But according to the report’s authors, even that seemingly robust number of officers would not be enough to fight off a well-coordinated terrorist attack.

Prior to the revisions following the 9/11 attacks, “the numbers (of anticipated terrorists attacking a nuclear site) were kept relatively low because intelligence agencies generally assumed that they themselves were capable of detecting conspiracies of more than a few members.”

That assumption, the report says, was proven wrong by the events of 9/11 when 19 hijackers, using commercial jets as weapons of mass destruction, successfully staged terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, DC.

The NRC slammed the report, which was requested by the Pentagon, as a “rehash of arguments from a decade ago,” when the country was on high alert following the deadliest attacks on American soil.

“The report contains no new information or insight,” David McIntyre, an NRC spokesman, told Reuters. He said the nuclear watchdog had bolstered security requirements for commercial nuclear power plants and was confident that these were adequately protected.

The question now is how the US government, which has been forced to trim back on federal programs in the aftermath of the economic crisis, will be able to foot the bill for more security at America’s nuclear energy plants.

From RT

Posted by The NON-Conformist