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Wed May 29, 2019, 06:16 AM

Concerned About the Planetary Climate, the IEA Urges Rethinking Nuclear Phase Outs.

PARIS (Reuters) - A steep decline in nuclear energy capacity will threaten climate goals and power supply security unless advanced economies find a way to extend the lifespan of their reactors, the International Energy Agency said.

Nuclear is currently the world’s second-largest source of low-carbon electricity, behind hydropower, and accounting for 10 percent of global electricity generation. But nuclear fleets in the United States and Europe are on average more than 35 years old and many of the world’s 452 reactors are set to close as cheap gas and tighter safety requirements make it uneconomical to operate them.

“Without policy changes, advanced economies could lose 25 percent of their nuclear capacity by 2025 and as much as two-thirds of it by 2040,” the IEA writes in its first major report about nuclear energy in two decades.

Over the past 20 years, wind and solar capacity has increased by 580 gigawatt GW in advanced economies. Despite that, however, IEA estimates that the 36 percent share of clean energy sources in global power supply in 2018 was the same as two decades ago because of the decline in nuclear.



IEA rings alarm bell on phasing out nuclear energy

The added bold is mine. I note that considering so called "renewable energy" in terms of peak power as opposed to energy is a commonly used Trump scale lie. "580 GW" of so called "renewable energy" operating at 30% capacity utilization is - fairly typical for so called "renewable energy - in terms of average continuous power represents about 175 GW of nuclear power, since nuclear power is capable of running at or near 100% capacity utilization. Moreover, nuclear power plants do not require redundant gas, oil or coal plants to cover them when they aren't operating.

We have, in this country, shit for brains people like President Obama's worst appointment, Gregory Jaczko, who wrote this piece of head up the ass bit of preciousness: I oversaw the U.S. nuclear power industry. Now I think it should be banned.

He declares, more than half a century into commercial nuclear operations, the experimental result being an extraordinarily low death toll, that "nuclear power is more dangerous than climate change." I note that this weak minded fool did not regulate the dangerous fossil fuel industry - which is allowed to dump it's wastes directly into the planetary atmosphere - which kills, along with biomass burning, 7 million people a year, but in his mind is not "too dangerous."

Here is the most recent full report from the Global Burden of Disease Report, a survey of all causes of death and disability from environmental and lifestyle risks: Global, regional, and national comparative risk assessment of 79 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks, 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015 (Lancet 2016; 388: 1659–724) One can easily locate in this open sourced document compiled by an international consortium of medical and scientific professionals how many people die from causes related to air pollution, particulates, ozone, etc.

Apparently in Jaczko's weak mind, destroying the planetary atmosphere is also not "too dangerous." His attitude, like that of most anti-nukes, is "who gives a rat's ass about future generations, it's their responsibility to do what we are incompetent to do ourselves, live without dangerous fossil fuels."

President Obama's best appointment in the field of energy and the environment was of course Nobel Laureate Steven Chu, who lead the charge to get nuclear reactor construction resumed in the United States.

Obviously Dr. Chu had a very different opinion than that asshole Dr. Jaczko.

It is not enough, by the way, to simply keep reactors built in the 20th century going. We need new reactors, reactors of different types, capable of high temperatures to remove carbon dioxide atmosphere. This is on the edge of technical feasibility.

We hit 415 ppm concentrations of the dangerous fossil fuel waste carbon dioxide this year, this after "investing" trillions of dollars in last ten years alone for solar and wind. Things are not getting better; they're getting worse.

The annual increases in the dangerous fossil fuel waste carbon dioxide in the planetary atmosphere have now approached 2.4 ppm/year. So called "renewable energy" has not worked; is not working; and will not work.

History will not forgive us, nor should it.

I wish you a nice day.

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Reply Concerned About the Planetary Climate, the IEA Urges Rethinking Nuclear Phase Outs. (Original post)
NNadir May 2019 OP
Name removed May 2019 #1
NNadir May 2019 #2
hunter May 2019 #4
NeoGreen May 2019 #3
NNadir May 2019 #5
qazplm135 May 2019 #6
NNadir May 2019 #7
qazplm135 May 2019 #8
NNadir May 2019 #11
hunter May 2019 #9
qazplm135 May 2019 #10
hunter May 2019 #12
qazplm135 May 2019 #13
hunter May 2019 #14
qazplm135 May 2019 #15
hunter May 2019 #17
NNadir May 2019 #16

Response to NNadir (Original post)


Response to Name removed (Reply #1)

Wed May 29, 2019, 12:25 PM

2. Not at all.

The news article is written in percent talk.

It says that the percentage is the same, but the use of energy has risen by more than 100 exajoules in this century.

After 50 years of mindless cheering the metal intensive useless wind and solar industries don't provide 11 of these.

The fastest growing source of energy on this planet in the 21st century has been coal, which grew by more than 60 exajoules to 157.

Despite endless and mindless criticism, the nuclear industry, using technology developed in the 1950s and 1960s, has been in terms of ENERGY producing almost 30 exajoules per year for decades.

Percent talk, selective attention and wishful thinking is destroying this planet, and the IEA, if not the general public is sounding an alarm, too little, too late, but it is what it is.

We will not be forgiven for our rote appeals to ignorance, nor should we be.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #2)

Wed May 29, 2019, 07:46 PM

4. Russian natural gas is the best!

And it's NATURAL!

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Wed May 29, 2019, 04:04 PM

3. Just what the fossil fuel industry would want...

...so that with the next catastrophic failure, they can move in and wipe out any carbon gains made.

https://www.democraticunderground.com/1127127784

...
For years, my concerns about nuclear energy’s cost and safety were always tempered by a growing fear of climate catastrophe. But Fukushima provided a good test of just how important nuclear power was to slowing climate change: In the months after the accident, all nuclear reactors in Japan were shuttered indefinitely, eliminating production of almost all of the country’s carbon-free electricity and about 30 percent of its total electricity production. Naturally, carbon emissions rose, and future emissions-reduction targets were slashed.

Would shutting down plants all over the world lead to similar results? Eight years after Fukushima, that question has been answered. Fewer than 10 of Japan’s 50 reactors have resumed operations, yet the country’s carbon emissions have dropped below their levels before the accident. How? Japan has made significant gains in energy efficiency and solar power. It turns out that relying on nuclear energy is actually a bad strategy for combating climate change: One accident wiped out Japan’s carbon gains. Only a turn to renewables and conservation brought the country back on target.


Emphasis added.

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Response to NeoGreen (Reply #3)

Wed May 29, 2019, 07:55 PM

5. I'm aware of the opinions of anti-nukes, and the result, recorded in the planetary atmosphere...

Last edited Wed May 29, 2019, 08:43 PM - Edit history (1)

...of their strange obsessions.

I am also aware of their circle of citing each other as if any of them had an ounce of sense or decency.

We hit 415 ppm this year, after trillions of dollars were squandered on steel, aluminum, lanthanides to make wind turbines that will be landfill before today's babies hit college. Those babies are going to have to clean that shit up.

As I repeat over and over with references, seven million people die each year from air pollution while people prattle on about "nuclear disasters."

Here is the most recent full report from the Global Burden of Disease Report, a survey of all causes of death and disability from environmental and lifestyle risks: Global, regional, and national comparative risk assessment of 79 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks, 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015 (Lancet 2016; 388: 1659–724) One can easily locate in this open sourced document compiled by an international consortium of medical and scientific professionals how many people die from causes related to air pollution, particulates, ozone, etc.

Seven million people amounts to amounts to a little more than a death every 4 seconds, not that this compares, in the minds of anti-nukes to Fukushima, since these people believe apparently that more people died from radiation in the Fukushima event, their cutesy little obsession with radiation revealed, than died from seawater in the same event. Actually 20,000 people were killed by seawater in the event that destroyed the reactors at Fukushima. How many deaths from radiation again?

Again, I'm aware of this mentality, and note its pernicious effects on the environment, written clearly in the dangerous fossil fuel waste carbon dioxide concentrations in the planetary atmosphere:

Week beginning on May 19, 2019: 414.74 ppm
Weekly value from 1 year ago: 411.44 ppm
Weekly value from 10 years ago: 390.53 ppm
Last updated: May 29, 2019

Up-to-date weekly average CO2 at Mauna Loa

There it is, 24 ppm in ten years, while two trillion dollars were squandered on solar and wind. In the 20th century, that figure was 1.5 ppm per year.

In the 21st century, all the wind, solar, geothermal and wave power increased by 8.12 exajoules, compared to 32.03 exajoules for oil, and 60.25 exajoules for coal.

All this steel intensive so called "renewable energy" crap didn't even keep up with the rise in consumption in that period, which rose by 164.83 exajoules to a total of 584.98 exajoules.

2018 Edition of the World Energy Outlook Table 1.1 Page 38 (I have converted MTOE in the original table to the SI unit exajoules in this text.)

Anti-nukes have placed their bets, but they are not the ones who will pay. The debtors will be every generation that follows, and in fact, every living thing on the planet. It was such a beautiful planet, and it's a shame to lose it to ignorance.

Despite endless dogma, widely spread around the planet, facts matter. The facts are clear, and all the prattling about batteries and lead laced perovskite solar cells and Elon Musk's tragic car for rich people powered by batteries made using "resources" obtained by the use of enslaved children cobalt miners will not cause the acceleration in accumulations to stop.

I need to expand my ignore list.

I did what I could, when I could, but there's no point in hearing endless bull, year after year after year. I've been here for nearly 16 years, and in that time the concentration of carbon dioxide rose by almost 39 ppm, while the whole time the same lines of bull were handled out about how so called "renewable energy" would save the day, most pushed by people who think any death from radiation is worth tens of millions of deaths from completely unregulated forms of energy, the growing use of dangerous fossil fuels, killing at will, because only nuclear energy is required in bizarre obsessions to be perfect and without risk.

Nuclear energy need not be perfect to be vastly superior to everything else. It only needs to be vastly superior to everything else, which it is.

So called "renewable energy" didn't save the day. It isn't saving the day. It won't save the day.

Misplaced faith in so called "renewable energy" is making things worse, not better. It's just lipstick on the fossil fuel pig.

Every air pollution death has a cause:

History will not forgive us, nor should it.

Have a wonderful life.





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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Thu May 30, 2019, 08:47 AM

6. To me one of the answers

is an Apollo Program emphasis on fusion.

It's difficult for sure, but we aren't talking FTL travel or some other impossible scientific goal.
But the reality is IF we could perfect fusion, we'd solve a whole lot of problem or at least reduce them significantly from power consumption to global warming.

I think nuclear energy in general does deserve a seat at the table.

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #6)

Thu May 30, 2019, 09:16 AM

7. I regularly attend talks at PPPL...

...on fusion. I would have very little against it if it was demonstrated and scalable. But it has been 20-30 years off for more than half a century.

We are at over 410 ppm concentrations of dangerous fossil fuel waste in the planetary atmosphere.

We don't have time to wait for speculative technologies. Nuclear fission is here now, is demonstrated in both best and worst cases.

It is demonstrated to be superior to all other forms of commercially available technologies, which, in a rational world would be enough.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #7)

Thu May 30, 2019, 10:03 AM

8. It's been that way because we haven't

Focused on it. A concentrated focus on alternative energy as an Apollo program would likely make the same leaps as it did for our non-existent space program in the 60s.

If we'd left space to the private sector we'd still be trying to get to the moon.

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #8)

Thu May 30, 2019, 01:45 PM

11. This is not really true.

There very serious issues that need to be addressed. One of these is a material science issue since there is no way to steer neutrons, particularly neutrons at 14 MeV.

The fusion people have spent decades and a huge amount of human hours just getting plasmas stabilized. They have not even begun to address heat transfer.

The Apollo/Manhattan Project paradigm is often abused and misunderstood. The successes are recorded, the failures are ignored.

I suggest reading Siddhartha Mukherjee's "The Emperor of All Maladies" for an insightful discussion of the Apollo model of Nixon's "War on Cancer."

The point is that without addressing the basic science and having it understood, throwing money and resources at a problem is extremely wasteful and in the end counter productive.

Many Cancers today are curable because of advances in molecular biology that were simply unknown in 1970. This understanding evolved over and more importantly required the work of literally millions of graduate students and their mentors working way outside a centralized bureaucracy.

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #6)

Thu May 30, 2019, 12:51 PM

9. Billions of dollars have been spent on fusion research. It's seen "Apollo Program" emphasis.

The ITER project alone is expected to be 20 billion dollars.

None of the current commercialization schemes, in which 80% of the energy comes from the release of neutrons, are especially preferable to fission reactors. It's still a process that creates "nuclear waste." It's still a very expensive process. One of the purported attractions of fusion reactors, "walk away" safety, is matched by many modern fission reactor designs.

Commercialization of aneutronic fission is still science fiction.

It seems to me that anyone who comes up with a plausible back-of-the envelope fusion design can stir up some level of funding, even for cold fusion experiments which got a very bad reputation after the Fleischmann–Pons fiasco.

More money doesn't seem to push the process forward in any proportional way.

When I was in high school one of my dad's friends took me to an open house at his work where they were building some kind of plasma injector for the Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor. That was more than forty years ago.

In contrast, people were building nuclear power plants, ships, and submarines just fifteen years after Fermi built the first nuclear reactor, Chicago Pile-1. Even without the wartime push to build the atomic bomb and later cold war pressures, I suspect the development of fission reactors would have been fairly rapid after the first successful reactor was built. It seems fusion is fundamentally a much more difficult problem.

I won't disparage fusion research, but I wouldn't bet the house, our civilization, or our natural world on it.

If you are optimistic and enthusiastic about fusion you can find refuge here:

https://focusfusion.org


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Response to hunter (Reply #9)

Thu May 30, 2019, 01:22 PM

10. Compare that to Apollo program

1960s funding and commitment. 20 billion dollars is nothing.
I'm talking about the full power effort and resources of the us government like with Apollo.

Do you really not think that wouldn't move the needle?

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #10)

Thu May 30, 2019, 04:11 PM

12. I think more intellectual energy has been applied to the problem of controlled fusion...

... than was applied to the Apollo program.

The dollar amounts, spread out over the many years people have been doing fusion research, are probably similar.

What we can't do as this world burns is pretend natural gas is some kind of transition fuel, some kind of "freedom gas."





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Response to hunter (Reply #12)

Thu May 30, 2019, 08:57 PM

13. oh I don't think that's remotely true

but regardless, the full resources, bodies, money and energy of the federal government has never been focused on fusion.

We went from ZERO space program. Not a satellite. Not any real rocket tech. Nada. To putting men on the moon and manned space stations in orbit, in less than a decade.

We've never put that concerted effort and energy and emphasis and money into fusion (or anything else to be honest).

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #13)

Thu May 30, 2019, 11:25 PM

14. Oh sure we have...

The Enterprise Air Surveillance Radar which will be installed on Gerald Ford Class aircraft carriers probably cost more than the entire Apollo program.

These Absurdly Stupid Aircraft Carriers, which are the 21st century version of the Maginot Line, cost much more than the entire space program through Apollo.

I lived and breathed the space program as a kid. My grandfather was one of the many engineers who worked on the Apollo Project. One of my own current interests is unmanned space exploration.

We can throw as much money at the problems of human space travel as we like, but I don't believe ordinary flesh-and-blood humans will ever have a significant presence in space beyond low earth orbit for the simple reason humans are too damned fragile. But our intellectual children might. Imagine beings that can walk around naked on the surface of mars just as we might enjoy a warm day at the beach. So maybe we should be studying artificial intelligence or genetic engineering instead of sending humans back to the moon in a sad encore.

Commercial fusion energy is a similar intellectual problem. Brute force and unlimited budgets are not likely to get us there. But maybe someone will see a faint anomaly in their fusion experiments, something surprising and unexpected, and that will be the key. It could happen at ITER, it could happen in some kid's fusor, it could happen in some physicist's daydream.

Meanwhile, we've got to do something about the carbon dioxide accumulating in our atmosphere and oceans NOW or there will be no bright tomorrows for most of us, let alone the other sentient species we share this planet with. We already have the tools we need. We don't need to claw down any futuristic technologies to get the job done.

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Response to hunter (Reply #14)

Fri May 31, 2019, 08:58 AM

15. you do understand

the concept of inflation yes?

And if you were around in the late 50s, we'd have never gone to the moon.

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #15)

Fri May 31, 2019, 11:11 AM

17. In today's dollars, the Apollo Program was what, $180 billion?

I did make a mistake in the post above. The entire electronic surveillance systems of these aircraft carriers, supercomputers and all, has received Apollo Project levels of intellectual investment. For Raytheon alone, revenues in 2018 were 27.1 billion dollars. The revenues of Apollo Project aerospace contractors were of a similar magnitude.

And nope, I don't think fusion is yet worthy of Manhattan Project, or even Apollo Project levels of investment. My opinion of the ITER project is that it should continue to be funded. Maybe it will surprise us, but probably not. It will definitely expose more reasons that fusion power is difficult and expensive, even compared to advanced fission power concepts.

Once upon a time the Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor was also expected to "break even." It's a repeating story with fusion projects.

The only way to quit fossil fuels is to quit fossil fuels and let the cards fall as they may. There is no foreseeable technology that will simply displace them.

There is enough "economically" extractable natural gas to destroy the world as we know it.

Betting the future of the world on technologies that don't yet exist is not wise.

Eventually enthusiasts of solar, wind, and yes, fusion energy, play into the hands of the natural gas industry.

And if I'd been around making policy in the 'fifties and 'sixties we'd have gotten to the moon just fine and done just as much, or even more science. But you are right, maybe not with people.

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Response to qazplm135 (Reply #13)

Fri May 31, 2019, 11:08 AM

16. On the contrary. We arrested and then hired Werner Von Braun in 1945.

The United States, after plucking him before the Soviets could get him, was launching V-2's in 1946 at White Sands under his supervision.

White Sands.

Of course these captured missiles were built by slave laborers, but we were quite willing to overlook that complication to advance rocket science.

Werner Von Braun had plenty of experience with rocketry, having fired lots of them at London's general area.

It's 2019. We are no where near Von Braun's practical experience with firing rockets with plasma confinement.

The NSTX fusion reactor at PPPL, which is not, and never will be a reactor functioning on the level as Von Braun's rockets in 1944, was severely damaged in 2016 and needed a year to be restarted and $94 million dollars.

We have already bet the planetary atmosphere on so called "renewable energy" at a cost of more than 2 trillion dollars in the last ten years alone. That's pretty "Apollo like" if you ask me. The result was failure. We are now seeing carbon dioxide concentrations of 415 ppm.

Speaking only for myself, I think it would be obscene to create another speculative "Apollo program" like the 2 trillion so called "renewable energy" experiment, when the "Manhattan Project" in the early 1940's has given us, albeit having been directed for war like purposes" a commercial technology that clearly works, and works extremely well, at least in the mind of anyone engaged in critical thinking.

I love PPPL. I believe it should be funded fully. I appreciate their efforts and their science. But they are not "Apollo" qualified, or, for that matter, "Manhattan Project" qualified.

In any case it is rare, very rare, for two men like Leslie Groves and Robert Oppenheimer to team up with essentially unlimited resources.

It is also rare that one can capture and hire a highly technically experienced war criminal and put him to work on something entirely different.

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