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Nuclear News - 1/20/2011
PGS Nuclear News, January 20, 2011
Compiled By: Matthew Kapuscinski


A.  Iran
    1. Iran Says to Seek Common Ground With World Powers on Nuclear Issue, Xinhua News Agency (1/19/2011)
    2. Iran's IAEA Envoy Heads for Moscow, PressTV (1/19/2011)
    3. Iran Conducts Missile Tests, UPI (1/19/2011)
    4. Russia Favors Iran, 5+1 Dialogue, PressTV (1/19/2011)
    5. US May Punish China Firms Evading Iran Sanctions: Clinton, AFP (1/19/2011)
B.  DPRK
    1. Defector Offers Insights Into North Korean Arms Buildup, The Chosun Ilbo (1/18/2011)
    2. Ukraine, Japan Support Nuclear-Free Status for Korean Peninsula, Kyiv Post (1/18/2011)
    3. Rift Wide Between Koreas on Routes to Dialogue, Sam Kim, Yonhap News Agency (1/18/2011)
C.  Nuclear Cooperation
    1. US, China Stepping Up Nuclear Security Cooperation, Associated Press (1/19/2011)
    2. Westinghouse and SNPTC Extend Cooperation, Nuclear Engineering International (1/19/2011)
    3. Russia Puts Brakes on Further Nuclear Cutbacks, Dmitry Zaks, AFP (1/19/2011)
D.  Nuclear Energy
    1. Spain Nuclear Watchdog Mulls Plant Permit Renewal, Reuters (1/19/2011)
    2. Vattenfall 'Can't Rule Out' Dutch Nuclear Power Involvement, Dutch News (1/19/2011)
    3. Romania Gets 3 Letters of Intent for Nuclear Reactors, Irina Savu, Bloomberg (1/19/2011)
    4. Bechtel Signs On To Braka Project, Nuclear Engineering International (1/19/2011)
E.  Links of Interest
    1. Can Powers Revive Nuclear Fuel Deal with Iran?, Fredrik Dahl, Reuters (1/19/2011)
    2. Powers to Press Defiant Iran in Nuclear Row, Fredrik Dahl, Reuters (1/19/2011)
    3. France Hopes to Win Fresh UAE Nuclear Deals, Al Arabiya (1/18/2011)



A.  Iran

1.
Iran Conducts Missile Tests
UPI
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Iran conducted missile tests Wednesday near its heavy water plant in Arak to boost the country's defense systems near vital sites, the Fars news agency said.

The missiles hit their designated targets, the news agency said.

The Iranian Students News Agency said mid-range surface-to-air missiles were tested near the Khondab nuclear center in central Iran, a reference to the Arak facility.

An Iranian official said the tests were part of efforts by the Islamic Republic to upgrade its missile defense systems and boost its defense capability, ISNA said.

Mohammad Khazaei, Iran's representative to the United Nations, said Tuesday his country will not negotiate its peaceful nuclear rights.

"We will not negotiate on our peaceful nuclear rights. To the Islamic Republic interaction in these talks is a strategy and not a tactic to buy time," he said referring to talks scheduled for Friday and Saturday in Istanbul with Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States and Germany on Iran's nuclear intentions, Press TV said.

Available at:
http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2011/01/19/Iran-conducts-missile-tests/UPI-16281295438805/


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2.
Iran Says to Seek Common Ground With World Powers on Nuclear Issue
Xinhua News Agency
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Ahead of upcoming talks with six world powers, Iran on Tuesday expressed willingness to find a mutually agreeable solution to the issue of its controversial nuclear program.

"Iran is ready to engage in serious and fruitful negotiations," Mohammad Khazaee, Iran's ambassador to the UN, told reporters at the country's diplomatic mission here in New York.

"We are looking for collective cooperation," he said.

Iran will hold a second round of negotiations on its nuclear program in Istanbul, Turkey, on Jan. 20-21, with the so-called P5+1 -- China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States plus Germany.

Meanwhile, Khazaee maintained that Iran would not back down from "its unalienable rights to use nuclear energy for only peaceful, peaceful purposes."

The ambassador said he regarded the talks as a "platform for cooperation" on broader political, security and economic issues at both regional and international levels.

The UN Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions on Iran's financial and military sectors in June in a bid to curb its uranium enrichment program.

The United States and Europe remain critical of Iran's nuclear program, suspecting that it masks a drive to develop an atomic bomb -- a charge repeatedly denied by Iran.

"Engagement in such negotiation is a strategic approach, not a tactic to buy more time," Khazaee said. However, he said that neither sanctions nor pressure would keep Iran from pursuing a "peaceful" nuclear program.

"Negotiations if dealt with good intention and genuine political will, instead of pressure and threats -- can ensure the Iranian rights and remove the concerns of both parties," he said.

Although the Iranian envoy called for engagement, he said Iran will "react accordingly" to any threats or pressure.

"It's not going to work putting a knife at (someone's) neck, or a sword, and at the same time ask him to negotiate with you," Khazaee said.

Available at:
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-01/19/c_13697727.htm


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3.
Iran's IAEA Envoy Heads for Moscow
PressTV
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Iran's envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) leaves Tehran for the Russian capital city of Moscow to elaborate on “technical and legal” aspects of the country's nuclear program.

“The visit to Russia is taking place with regard to the importance of the awareness of the world public opinion, particularly intellectuals, the elite, academics and mass media about various technical and legal aspects of Iran's nuclear activities,” IRNA quoted Ali Asghar Soltanieh as saying ahead of his departure to Moscow on Wednesday.

He added that during his three-day visit, he would meet with academics and university professors, visit research centers and conduct interviews with Russian media.

The Iranian official noted that he would give explanation about Tehran's interaction with the IAEA over the past eight years and prove that the Islamic Republic remained quite committed to its international undertaking in accordance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Soltanieh's visit to Moscow is taking place one day ahead of the two-day multifaceted talks between Iran and the P5+1 -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the US plus Germany -- which are scheduled to open in the Turkish city of Istanbul on January 21.

Iran and the representatives of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council held their last round of comprehensive talks in the Swiss city of Geneva on December 6 and 7.

Iranian officials have repeatedly refuted allegations leveled by the US and its allies that Iran is developing a military nuclear program.

Tehran argues that as a signatory to the NPT and a member of the IAEA, it has a right to use nuclear technology for peaceful applications.

Available at:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/160904.html


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4.
Russia Favors Iran, 5+1 Dialogue
PressTV
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov says dialogue between Iran and the P5+1 will bring the perspectives of the two sides closer and assist them to reach common ground.

We hope that we can achieve good results in Istanbul talks through focusing on common concerns in a peaceful atmosphere, Ryabkov said in a meeting with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Mehdi Akhoundzadeh in the Russian capital, Moscow, late Tuesday.

The Russian foreign ministry official's remarks come at a time that Iran and the P5+1-- Britain, China, France, Russia and the US plus Germany - are preparing to continue their multifaceted talks in the Turkish city of Istanbul on January 21 and 22.

The Islamic Republic and the six major powers ended the third round of talks in Geneva on December 7 and the next round of talks will be held in Istanbul in late January.

Ryabkov reiterated that senior officials in Moscow are seriously seeking to boost relations and cooperation with Tehran in various sectors.

The Iranian deputy foreign minister, for his part, expressed hope that the good will and sincerity of the negotiating side would yield good results for both sides in a win-win situation.

“Tehran has repeatedly proven the sincerity and transparency of its peaceful nuclear activities to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the international community and the agency's reports have shown no deviation in this regard,” Akhoundzadeh said.

During the meeting, the two sides stressed the importance of cooperation on annihilation of weapons of mass destruction and the full and non-discriminatory implementation of international conventions.

The Iranian and Russian deputy foreign ministers also reviewed the various dimensions of Tehran-Moscow ties and cooperation in international and regional arenas.

Available at:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/160882.html


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5.
US May Punish China Firms Evading Iran Sanctions: Clinton
AFP
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday that some Chinese firms were still failing to comply fully with UN sanctions and suggested Washington could impose its own sanctions on them.

"We think that there are some entities within China that we have brought to the attention of the Chinese leadership that are still not as, shall we say, as in compliance as we would like them to be," Clinton told ABC television.

"And we are pushing very hard on that and we may be proposing more unilateral sanctions," the chief US diplomat said during the interview with the network during the state visit by Chinese President Hu Jintao.

"Now, the Chinese response is they are enforcing the sanctions they agreed to in the Security Council; they did not agree to either European, American, or Japanese sanctions that were imposed unilaterally," she said.

"Our response to that is, look, we share the same goal, we need to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state; so therefore, even though technically you did not sign up to our unilateral sanctions, we expect you to help us implement them," Clinton said.

In October, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu insisted Beijing was implementing UN sanctions against Iran after Washington said it had asked Beijing to look into whether some Chinese firms were evading the restrictions.

China is Iran's closest trading partner and has major energy interests in the Islamic republic, which Western governments suspect of seeking to develop nuclear weapons capability.

Tehran strongly denies the allegations, but Beijing still voted for a fourth set of UN sanctions against Iran in June last year over its refusal to freeze uranium enrichment.

The Washington Post reported in October that the United States believes some Chinese firms are helping Iran to improve its missile technology and develop nuclear weapons, and has asked Beijing to prevent such activity.

Crowley confirmed at the time that Washington had provided information to Beijing about individual Chinese companies, "and the Chinese assured us that they will investigate."

Available at:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5h5-Mbk7v8Et7uMDvlX3G9yDj7mVQ?docId=CNG.2b77591c55e379cfdb5543b179328f06.111


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B.  DPRK

1.
Defector Offers Insights Into North Korean Arms Buildup
The Chosun Ilbo
1/18/2011
(for personal use only)


North Korea began building centrifuges to enrich uranium in the late 1990s, a high-ranking North Korean defector said Tuesday. "There is a factory in Huichon, Jagang Province that builds centrifuges," the defector said.

There are fears that centrifuges manufactured in Huichon could have been moved to the nearby Yongbyon nuclear facility north of Pyongyang. Huichon is just 57 km from Yongbyon and the two cities are connected by road and railway.

In November North Korea took U.S. nuclear expert Siegfried Hecker to a facility in Yongbyon that contained around a thousand centrifuges. U.S. and South Korean intelligence officials believe that the centrifuges were made elsewhere.

Huichon also houses a cluster of factories that produce precision machinery and electrical components that are crucial to manufacturing centrifuges. According to the Unification Ministry, North Korean leader Kim Jong-il visited Huichon seven times last year to inspect power plants and factories there. Recently, North Korea has mobilized troops from Kim's own guard corps and is going all out to build a hydroelectric power plant there.

A North Korean source said, "It takes a considerable amount of electricity to operate centrifuges. There are suspicions that North Korea wants to turn Huichon into a uranium enrichment center after completing the hydroelectric plant." The senior defector said North Korea is incapable of producing the engines that are a crucial component of centrifuges and had to import them from Japan, France and Russia.

Turning to the North's existing nuclear weapons, the defector said their efficiency still needs to be improved, so North Korea will try to boost its nuclear capability by conducting a third nuclear test. "There is almost no chance that North Korea will start a war at this point," he added. "High-ranking North Korean military commanders know their country is incapable of sustaining a war."

He also said there appears to be considerable discontent in North Korea about the transfer of power to Kim's son Jong-un. After Kim junior was appointed as successor, security officers reportedly raided the homes of high-ranking officials and dug out vast stashes of dollars, and many proteges of Kim Jong-il's brother-in-law Jang Song-taek and O Kuk-ryol, a vice chairman of the National Defense Commission, are believed to have been arrested.

The defector said claims that former leader Kim Il-sung's last wish was to denuclearize his country are "nonsense." He said there was a heated debate in 1986, when the Yongbyon nuclear facility was almost completed, whether to use it for power generation or weapons development. "At that time, Kim Il-sung issued a lengthy command ordering it to be used to develop nuclear weapons," the defector said. "All the scientists who wanted to use the facility for power generation were fired."

On the North's missile program, the defector said North Korea's Scud B and C missiles, which have a range of 300-500 km, were developed based on two Russian missiles smuggled in from Egypt during the 1960s. At the time, the North provided one of the two missiles to China, and as a gesture of gratitude Beijing in turn offered technical assistance to the North in the 1990s in order to boost the performance of the weapons. He added that Swedish builder and mining equipment maker Atlas Copco helped North Korea build a large cave in Ryanggang Province that came under suspicion in 1999 for housing an underground nuclear facility.

Regarding North Korea's attack against the South Korean Navy corvette Cheonan, the defector said it was "probably the result of years of preparation" after naval clashes on the West Sea in 1999 and 2002. He said the skirmish in 1999 killed around 20 North Korean sailors, wounded around 70, sank one vessel and destroyed seven more.

In 2002, six South Korean sailors died, but some dozen North Korean sailors were killed and 15 wounded, and one of the North's vessels was completely destroyed. "When it realized it could not beat South Korea with ships, North Korea turned to torpedoes to plan a surprise attack," the defector said.

Available at:
http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2011/01/19/2011011901247.html


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2.
Rift Wide Between Koreas on Routes to Dialogue
Sam Kim
Yonhap News Agency
1/18/2011
(for personal use only)


Despite their repeated calls for dialogue, South and North Korea remained wide apart Tuesday over what they should negotiate when and if the sides meet to ease the heightened tension on their peninsula.

Speaking at a ceremony, South Korean Unification Minister Hyun In-taek dismissed Pyongyang's recent offers of talks as insincere and even contemptuous, insisting Pyongyang first apologize for its Nov. 23 shelling and other provocations against the South.

Hyun, the South's point man on the North, also said any dialogue between the countries would have to involve Pyongyang's promise to denuclearize and its apology for sinking a South Korean warship in March last year.

"Without these, inter-Korean dialogue cannot move smoothly," he said, adding the North holds the key to restoring their dialogue.

Analysts and officials say the North is mounting a renewed peace offensive in a drive to extract aid and alleviate its economic hardships after raising stakes through armed provocations last year.

Rodong Sinmun, the North's main newspaper, said in an editorial carried by the official Korean Central News Agency that dialogue should be held quickly to mend the ties, but refrained from mentioning the South-raised topics for talks.

"Only when the South Korean authorities repeal the confrontation policy ... is it possible to reap good fruit from dialogue and negotiations, mend the North-South relations and ensure peace on the Korean Peninsula," it said.

North Korea argues the South should immediately agree to dialogue, citing the spirit of detente that marked their ties during the decade before a conservative government took power here in 2008.

North Korea has made a series of proposals for economic talks in the past few weeks along with conciliatory steps to lure the South into dialogue. South Korea, whose president said his government was open to talks despite the North's deadly shelling, argues the communist state must first agree to discuss its nuclear programs.

North Korea, which has conducted two nuclear tests, claims its development of atomic bombs is aimed at deterring a U.S. invasion and therefore must be negotiated mainly with Washington.

Available at:
http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/northkorea/2011/01/18/23/0401000000AEN20110118007100315F.HTML


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3.
Ukraine, Japan Support Nuclear-Free Status for Korean Peninsula
Kyiv Post
1/18/2011
(for personal use only)


Ukraine and Japan have agreed on the need to seek a nuclear-free status for the Korean Peninsula.

"As for the development of North Korea's nuclear program, the two leaders [Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan] stressed the need to seek a nuclear-free status for the Korean Peninsula in line with the joint declaration adopted after six-party talks in 2005 and the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council," reads a joint declaration signed by the Ukrainian president and the Japanese prime minister after their talks in Tokyo on Tuesday.

The sides confirmed that North Korea should respond to the concerns of the international community with respect to humanitarian issues in line with the resolutions adopted at a meeting of the UN General Assembly in December 2010 and a meeting of the UN Human Rights Council in March 2010.

The declaration reads that Ukraine and Japan share the desire to make the UN Security Council more representative, legitimate, effective and appropriate to the realities of the international community in the 21st century.

"They [Yanukovych and Kan] expressed their readiness to continue active participation in intergovernmental negotiations on reform of the [UN] Security Council, including its expansion under the categories of permanent and non-permanent members, in the direction of taking a decision that would enjoy the widest possible political support of the member states," the document says.

During the talks, Yanukovych confirmed the support from Ukraine for Japan's desire to gain a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. He also expressed hope that Japan would provide its consistent support for Ukraine's position that reform of the UN Security Council should ensure an enlarged representation of Eastern European countries by providing it with at least one additional seat among the non-permanent members.

Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/nation/detail/95069/#ixzz1BX23d8iC

Available at:
http://www.kyivpost.com/news/nation/detail/95069/


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C.  Nuclear Cooperation

1.
Russia Puts Brakes on Further Nuclear Cutbacks
Dmitry Zaks
AFP
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


The cheer over Russia's approval of a new nuclear disarmament treaty is short-lived as it masks Moscow's reluctance to ensure further cuts, threatening US President Barack Obama's vision of a nuclear-free world.

Russia is going through the final motions of ratifying a new START treaty that reduces old nuclear warhead ceilings by 30 percent and limits each side to 700 deployed long-range missiles and heavy bombers.

The pact will be submitted for a last vote to Russia's lower house of parliament on January 25 and almost certainly be ratified by the upper chamber the following day.

It was backed by the US Senate last month.

But analysts said that Moscow and Washington have little time to rejoice having put in motion the first round of mandated nuclear weapons reductions since the Cold War.

Obama, who pledged to "reset" Russia-US relations, sees START as only a stepping stone to further cutbacks, but a top Russian official made clear last week that the president's insistence for another round of negotiations later this year was not being received well in Moscow.

"I am convinced that before talking about any further steps in the sphere of nuclear disarmament ... it is necessary to fulfill the new START agreement," Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters.

Only "then will be it be clear what additional steps should be taken to strengthen global security," he added.

In Russia's view, the round of disarmament which covers short-range tactical missiles dear to Moscow, balances out the West's current dominance in modern conventional forces.

The US Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists estimates that Russia has 2,050 deployed tactical warheads that could be deployed in small nuclear campaigns in its periphery. The United States has just 500.

Lavrov said Russia's commitment under the new START treaty will not be "fulfilled" for another seven years, and some analysts interpreted the comments as a flat-out rejection of Obama's latest overture.

"It seems Lavrov meant that these talks will not start for another seven years," said independent military commentator Alexander Golts.

"It is also important to note that Lavrov said these talks should be tied to space and conventional weapons," said Golts.

"This is basically a polite way of saying that we are not ready to talk about it."

The Russian foreign minister Lavrov spelled out a series of amendments that appear inherently unacceptable to the United States.

They include the prohibition of military space programmes that the Pentagon is currently studying and a requirement for all talks to include conventional warheads that the West is developing much faster than Russia.

Lavrov even suggested that the next round of talks should for the first time involve other countries -- presumably China and other emerging nuclear powers that may press their own demands on Washington.

"Most Russian experts see nuclear weapons as an equalizer," said Moscow's Centre for Disarmament Director Anatoly Dyakov.

"They believe that the removal of nuclear weapons must be accompanied by a full transformation of international relations that ensures that no country can suddenly decide to use force."

Military analysts estimate that it will take Russia another decade to develop a conventional weapons programme capable of re-establishing some semblance of parity with the West.

But they warned that it is highly unlikely that Russia will be able to delay the next round of nuclear negotiations for as long as suggested by Lavrov.

"We are going to have to start these whether we like it or not," said Institute for Strategic Assessment head Alexander Konovalov.

"The Americans will not stand for this kind of disparity."

Available at:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gd7wKtIOapv9Gl1nqyOkm7Y-yijQ?docId=CNG.cf3f9df69d3ee50f7a0a62316dbb5b65.b1


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2.
US, China Stepping Up Nuclear Security Cooperation
Associated Press
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


President Barack Obama announced a deal Wednesday to step up cooperation with China on nuclear security.

The agreement signed by U.S. and Chinese energy officials during the visit of Chinese President Hu Jintao would establish a jointly financed nuclear security center in China. U.S. officials see the agreement as an opening to expand security cooperation with China.

The announcement at a joint appearance with Hu comes as the Obama administration is looking for ways to ease tensions between the two world powers over economic, trade and security issues.

The United States has spent billions on extensive cooperation on nuclear security with Russia and has often used the issue as a way to stimulate further political cooperation. But it has had very limited interaction with China on nuclear security.

The U.S. considers China a vital player in attempts to contain North Korean aggression against South Korea and curb its development of nuclear weapons. The U.S. also needs Chinese support to rein in Iran's nuclear ambitions, as China is a permanent U.N. Security Council member with veto power.

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu called the agreement a major step forward in implementing nuclear security.

The venture is aimed at training to improve security at nuclear facilities and accounting of nuclear materials. U.S. officials also hope to hold joint exercises on responding to nuclear disasters and terrorism and to share nuclear detection technology.

U.S. officials also say the two countries plan to open up the center to other countries in Asia, hoping that China can use its influence to improve nuclear security in the region.

Under the agreement signed by Chu and China Atomic Energy Authority Chairman Chen Quifa, China would pay for most of the center's budget, but the United States would provide technology and expertise.

The idea for the center was first proposed by Hu at Obama's nuclear security summit in April.

Available at:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g-MYkaRHl_S2lF4KzyIKxxBUWlmA?docId=f0bcf82d38a247b597d7db2c0ea674a8


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3.
Westinghouse and SNPTC Extend Cooperation
Nuclear Engineering International
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Westinghouse Electric Company and China's State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation today signed a two-year extension of a nuclear cooperation agreement that focuses on continued deployment of the Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power plant in China as well as service and maintenance, technology development and strategic investment.

The original agreement was signed in 2008.

Currently, Westinghouse and its consortium team member The Shaw Group, are providing four AP1000 units in China, two each at Sanmen and Haiyang.

Westinghouse and China have also announced a series of other cooperative agreements.

Most recently, it has reached agreement with China Baotou Nuclear Fuel (CBNF) to design, manufacture and install fuel fabrication equipment that will enable China to manufacture fuel for the fleet of Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power plants now being built there.

Total value of the contract is $35 million. Additional terms are not being disclosed at this time.

The equipment will be sourced from Westinghouse and its suppliers in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Colorado, Michigan, South Carolina and North Carolina. It will be installed in a CBNF facility in Baotou, China.

Previously, Westinghouse had entered into agreements creating a joint venture to build and operate a nuclear-grade zirconium sponge facility in Jiangsu Province. Westinghouse has also, among other things, provided service support at the Qinshan site in Zhejiang Province and at the Daya Bay site in Guangdong Province.

Available at:
http://www.neimagazine.com/story.asp?sectionCode=132&storyCode=2058637


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D.  Nuclear Energy

1.
Bechtel Signs On To Braka Project
Nuclear Engineering International
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Bechtel will provide design and project management support services for the first commercial nuclear power plant in the Middle East. The plant will be one of four that a consortium headed by the Korean Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) will build and manage in the United Arab Emirates.

“This project continues Bechtel’s tradition of working on first-of-its kind projects around the world,” said Carl Rau, president of Bechtel’s nuclear division. “We have worked with KEPCO since the 1950s, when it first commissioned Bechtel to build the DangIn-Ri power plant in Korea. We believe the strength of that relationship will contribute to the success of this project.”

Bechtel will provide project support to KEPCO subsidiary KEPCO E&C both in Seoul, Korea, and at the project site in Braka, which is in the western region of Abu Dhabi. Bechtel has served the nuclear power market for more than 60 years and has worked at more than 150 nuclear plants worldwide. It currently has more than 3,000 employees working globally on nuclear projects.

The first UAE nuclear power plant is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

Available at:
http://www.neimagazine.com/story.asp?sectionCode=132&storyCode=2058634


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2.
Romania Gets 3 Letters of Intent for Nuclear Reactors
Irina Savu
Bloomberg
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Romania’s government received letters of intent from three prospective bidders for a 4 billion-euro ($5.4 billion) contract to build two nuclear reactors on the Black Sea coast, the Economy Ministry said.

The potential bidders include Bechtel Group Inc., a group led by Canadian construction company SNC Lavalin Nuclear Inc. and another led by Russia’s Atomtechnoprom, the ministry said in an e-mailed statement today.

The construction and engineering contract will be awarded by the first half of 2012, according to the statement.

The group led by SNC Lavalin includes Italy’s Ansaldo Nucleare SpA and Romania’s Elcomex IEA SA; the Atomtechnoprom group takes in four other Russian companies, the ministry said.

Construction of the plants will double the number of reactors in Romania to four, each with a capacity of 700 megawatts. Two existing atomic facilities supply about 18 percent of the country’s energy needs.

A committee will assess the documents filed by the prospective bidders to qualify for the next stages of the process: presentation of preliminary offers, final offers, selection of the winner and the awarding of the contract, the ministry said.

EnergoNuclear, the venture formed by the Romanian government with international partners to operate the two reactors, said on its website that the first will be operational in 2017. The government currently owns 60 percent of the venture, which also includes Italy’s Enel SpA, Iberdrola SA of Spain, Belgium’s Electrabel SA, Germany’s RWE AG and steelmaker ArcelorMittal.

Romania bought 9 percent previously owned by CEZ AS of the Czech Republic, which withdrew from the project to focus on its domestic investments. Romania will decide at the end of February whether to keep or reduce its stake.

Available at:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-01-19/romania-gets-3-letters-of-intent-for-nuclear-reactors-update1-.html


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3.
Spain Nuclear Watchdog Mulls Plant Permit Renewal
Reuters
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Spain's nuclear regulator said on Wednesday it was studying a request to renew the operating permit for the 1,000-megawatt Cofrentes plant.

Although Spain's government has ruled out building new nuclear plants and has ordered the ageing Garona plant to close in 2013, analysts say they expect Spain's other seven nuclear power stations -- including Cofrentes -- to run for decades.

The Nuclear Safety Council (CSN) said in a statement it had drawn up a technical report on the renewal request, which it would study over the coming weeks.

The CSN will then issue a ruling, which is only binding should it decide the plant is not safe to continue running. The final decision is up to the industry ministry.

Cofrentes' current permit expires on March 20 and may be renewed for 10 years without exceeding the current 40-year limit for operating nuclear plants in Spain.

Two Spanish nuclear plants had their permits renewed last year, and four plants are up for renewal in 2011. In all, Spain's nuclear power stations meet about 20 percent of the country's electricity needs.

Cofrentes is located in southeastern Spain and is wholly owned by Iberdrola, Spain's biggest power utility.

Available at:
http://af.reuters.com/article/energyOilNews/idAFLDE70I1Y920110119


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4.
Vattenfall 'Can't Rule Out' Dutch Nuclear Power Involvement
Dutch News
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)


Swedish state-controlled utility Vattenfall 'cannot rule out' participating in the construction of a new nuclear power plant in the Netherlands if the government approves a second reactor, executive board member Tuomo Hatakka told news agency Dow Jones on Tuesday.

Hatakka made the comment on the sidelines of an energy conference in Germany. Vattenfall owns Dutch power firm Nuon.

There are currently two initiatives to build new nuclear power stations in the Netherlands. The former shareholders of energy company Essent - a number of local and provincial councils – said last September they had started procedures to build a new plant. Essent is now owned by RWE.

The councils are shareholders in Energy Resource Holding, which owns half of Borssele, the Netherlands only nuclear power station.

Power firm Delta, which owns the other half of Borssele, has similar plans to build a second nuclear power station. Those plans were announced in 2009.

Available at:
http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2011/01/vattenfall_cant_rule_out_dutch.php


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E.  Links of Interest

1.
Can Powers Revive Nuclear Fuel Deal with Iran?
Fredrik Dahl
Reuters
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE70I4WI20110119


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2.
Powers to Press Defiant Iran in Nuclear Row
Fredrik Dahl
Reuters
1/19/2011
(for personal use only)
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE70I4TN20110119


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3.
France Hopes to Win Fresh UAE Nuclear Deals
Al Arabiya
1/18/2011
(for personal use only)
http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2011/01/18/133984.html


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