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Index / Mining & Minerals - Evaluations / Off-World Exploration, Mining, & Technology

A private company founded by a group of dotcom entrepreneurs says it will establish a permanent base on the Moon and begin mining its surface by 2020. Spurred on by the offer of a $20 million prize by Google, Fl-based Moon Express unveiled plans yesterday on Capitol Hill to build a base on the Moon South Pole and staff it with robots that will explore the lunar surface looking for water and minerals.

The company would put its plans into action using the MX-1E, a 2-m-high space robot that can land on the Moon and hop across its surface. Bob Richards, the chief executive of Moon Expre... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/08/08  |  42 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Solar Energy / Resource Evaluation

Dr. Conca reports that a solar eclipse will occur on August 21st and will have an interesting side effect of shutting off some electricity production in America as the shadow rolls across our ever-increasing number of solar arrays.

The shadow from the Moon will be 70 miles wide as it races across the U.S. at well over 1,000 miles per hour, from Portland, Oregon, to Charleston, South Carolina. On the way, it will cut solar power production by about 9,000 MW, about as much electricity as produced by 15 coal-fired power plants.

Then, the solar power will come roaring back as... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/08/08  |  57 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Education, Ethics, Society, Employment Issues

Dr. Conca reports that the U.S. electric power industry supports more than 7 million jobs. This is about 5% of all jobs in America or 1 in every 20 jobs. That is the crux of a new report released yesterday by M. J. Bradley & Associates that describes how the electric power industry contributes about $880 billion each year to the economy. That is about 5% of our total Gross Domestic Product or GDP.

The report, Powering America: The Economic and Workforce Contributions of the U.S. Electric Power Industry, details how the electric power industry spends over $100 billion in investme... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/08/03  |  61 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Exploration, Mining, Marketing, Acquisitions

Reuben Gregg Brewer reports that the Cameco Corporation is the world largest pure-play uranium miner. That has not been a great business to be in lately, but the outlook for uranium appears pretty enticing. For aggressive investors, Cameco nearly 80% price decline over the past decade could be a huge buying opportunity. But what if the bull case does not pan out?

The first thing to note about Cameco and uranium is that the miner has actually managed to weather a deep industry downturn pretty well. To give you a feel for the pain, uranium prices hit a 12-year low in 2016. But last y... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/31  |  66 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Dr. Conca answers the question .... Is hacking nuclear power plants something we should be afraid of?

The answer is ....No! Nuclear plants are still mostly analog and not connected to the Internet. On purpose. Hackers have been penetrating the computer networks of companies that operate nuclear power stations and other energy facilities, as well as manufacturing plants. A joint report from the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI suggests many of the hackers are backed by governments like Russia and China.

U.S. nuclear plants, like our own Columbia Generating Stati... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/26  |  39 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

William Gloege, a world explorer, responds to a recent editorial referring to waste from nuclear plants, wherein the editorial calls them lethal and deadly. One would expect to find a lot of dead bodies and sick people from lethal, deadly nuclear waste as we see from burning fossil fuel. These are typical scare terms used by nuclear adversaries.

But the fact is we have not found one single injury or fatality from nuclear waste. All we have is a mantra from anti-nuclear activists (typically left-wing tribal supporters) against the possibility of someday stored reactor waste hurting i... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/26  |  28 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Jiji Press reports that the Matsuyama District Court on Friday rejected a petition for an injunction to halt the operations of the No. 3 reactor at Shikoku Electric Power Co. Ikata nuclear plant in Ehime Prefecture.

The reactor resumed operations in August last year after passing the Nuclear Regulation Authority screening under the new safety standards, introduced after the March 2011 triple meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

There is nothing unreasonable about the new standards, presiding Judge Keiko Kuboi said. The peti... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/24  |  30 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Stephen Joyce reports that Connecticut and Ohio could be the next states to grant financial concessions to the nuclear power industry despite fierce opposition from a coalition of oil, natural gas, manufacturing and environmental interests. Lawmakers in those two states this fall are expected to revive nuclear bills, which could benefit FirstEnergy Corp. and Dominion Energy Inc. Those moves would follow the enactment of policies by Illinois and New York that essentially provide ratepayer-financed subsidies to keep struggling nuclear power plants from being shut down even though they are licens... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/24  |  29 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

William Gloege opines that South Korea has elected a liberal president. Expressing the liberal tribal belief, their leaders want to cut nuclear power. But if they care about safety, they should be for 100 percent nuclear power.

Nuclear reactors save lives, according to leading American environmental scientist James Hansen of Columbia University. Burning fossil fuels kills 3 million people worldwide each year, according to the International Energy Agency.

Extreme nuclear accidents exist only in movies and imaginations of an anti-nuclear cult pandering fear to support their... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/23  |  34 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Related Environmental Issues / Environmental Impact - Cases, Nuclear Wastes

The Editorial Board of the Washington Post reported that Energy Secretary Rick Perry traveled to Capitol Hill last month, asking Congress for $28 billion in funding for everything from nuclear weapons to clean-coal research. Yet one of the most controversial elements in his department budget proposal was a request for a relatively tiny $120 million, to restart work on Nevada Yucca Mountain nuclear waste storage site.

Congress decided in the 1980s that Yucca was to be the permanent home of the U.S. large and increasing store of spent nuclear fuel. In a forbidding desert landscape abo... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/17  |  21 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Batkins, et al., report that nuclear power is among the safest, but also the most regulated forms of energy in the world. As measured by harmful emissions, workplace injuries or fatalities on the job, nuclear has a sterling safety record, but the regulation imposed on the industry generates incredible costs and deters new reactor construction from producing zero-carbon energy.

Based on a review of publicly available 10-Ks, the American Action Forum (AAF) found $15.7 billion in regulatory liabilities for the industry, or $219 million per plant. These were largely related to long-term... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/17  |  26 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Bloomberg Editorial Board opines that if market forces are allowed to shut down nuclear power plants in the U.S., the climate and public health will suffer. The bankruptcy of Westinghouse Electric Co. is yet more evidence, if anyone needed any, that the economics of nuclear power are not good with cheap natural gas, a fossil fuel.

Unlike coal, however, nuclear energy is a crucial tool in the fight against climate change. So the public subsidies that benefit the nuclear industry in the U.S. are justified, whereas efforts to prop up the coal industry are not.

And states ar... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/17  |  22 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Jim Polson, a natural gas supporter, opines that a decade ago, nuclear power plants in the U.S. were cash cows. Now more than half of them are bleeding cash, knocked from profitability by the shale-gas glut that has tanked electricity prices. Five nuclear plants were closed prematurely in the past five years, and more are on the chopping block. The industry used to look down on the subsidies needed by its clean-energy rivals, wind and solar power.

Now some states are offering subsidies to nuclear plants similar to the ones that wind and solar generators, whose costs have plunged, a... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/17  |  23 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Health & Safety - Mining, Environmental, Cyber

Arend Hintze opines that as an artificial intelligence researcher, he often comes across the idea that many people are afraid of what AI might bring. It is perhaps unsurprising, given both history and the entertainment industry, that we might be afraid of a cybernetic takeover that forces us to live locked away, Matrix-like, as some sort of human battery.

And yet it is difficult for him to look up from the evolutionary computer models he uses to develop AI, to think about how the innocent virtual creatures on his screen might become the monsters of the future. Might he become the de... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/17  |  37 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Dr. Conca reports that the French environment and energy minister, Nicolas Hulot, announced that the country would keep the previous President to promise to reduce the amount of nuclear energy from 75% to 50% of the French electricity generation, and replace it with wind and solar energy as part of a plan to fight global warming. But earlier in May, candidate Macron said he would delay this nuclear phaseout.

The plan to phase out nuclear plants actually predates Macron, stemming from a political pact made by former French President, FranÃÂÂ&... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/16  |  24 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Health & Safety - Mining, Environmental, Cyber

Darrell Proctor reports that U.S. officials said Russian government hackers have broken into systems at U.S. nuclear power plants and also have made cyber intrusions into the business systems of other energy companies, according to several reports over the past week. Cybersecurity experts say the threats against U.S. facilities are real and likely to continue, as power plant operators work to make their plants more secure against such attacks.

In the U.S. there are regulations in place say that critical assets have to be protected against cyberattack. Those systems have to be isolat... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/13  |  30 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Exploration, Mining, Marketing, Acquisitions

Melissa Shaw reports that as of July 3, the U3O8 spot price was at $20.35 per pound, up from $19.85 on June 20 and $19.25 on June 14. Despite that modest uptick, analysts believe the price will not improve much more until 2018. While additional reactors continue to be built in countries like China and India, the effects of the 2011 Fukushima shutdown of their reactors are still being felt although they are slated to be back on line in the next year or so.

Utilities companies have not yet secured new supply contracts for uranium, and threats to supply like Kazakhstan decision to cu... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/13  |  27 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

Charles McConnell, Executive Director of Rice University Energy and Environment Initiative, opines that some disasters arise unexpectedly, like an earthquake or massive storm. Others seem inevitable. Who did not see the 2008 financial crisis coming? In hindsight, most of us.

In reality, most crises that seem inevitable after the fact often catch nearly all of us by surprise when they occur. The factors were obvious enough, but few people saw them coming together. There is a potential crisis that will seem predictable, after the fact. It is better to take thoughtful consideration and... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/12  |  28 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Coal / Economics

Dr. Conca reports that the Southern Company and Mississippi Power announced that they would be turning their clean coal power plant project into a natural gas power plant. The Kemper County Power Plant in rural Mississippi was the largest clean coal project in the U.S. Kemper embodied the hope that coal could become a major part of a future clean energy mix, coupled with low-carbon sources like renewables and nuclear.

The 582 MW power plant was designed as a gasification plant, turning the dirtiest of coal (lignite) into syngas (mostly hydrogen). The plant also has an advanced amine... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/11  |  41 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Coal / Related Environmental Issues / Environmental Impact

Sonal Patel reports that the new administration has officially announced that the U.S. will exit the Paris Agreement, this leaves China, an economic powerhouse with a population of 1.3 billion people and a colossal demand for electricity, at the helm of the world efforts to mitigate climate change. But while China has been criticized for its historical reliance on coal (as has the U.S.), it remains the worlds largest producer, consumer, and importer of coal today.

Over the past five years, the country has embarked on a remarkable transition to ramp
up environmental measures,... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/07  |  30 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Renewable Energy (Other Energy Resources) / Resource Evaluation

Ryan Maye Handy reports that electricity generated by wind, solar and hydroelectric sources in March and April exceeded power provided by nuclear plants for the first time in more than 30 years, when nuclear plants were still coming into the power mix, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

This milestone is another example of the rapid growth of renewable technologies as their costs come down and their efficiency improves, making them more attractive to customers, businesses and investors seeking cleaner energy sources for the time being.

Between March 2016 and Marc... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/07  |  38 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Health & Safety - Mining, Environmental, Cyber

Michael Riley, et al., reports hackers working for a foreign government recently breached at least a dozen U.S. power plants, including the Wolf Creek nuclear facility in Kansas, according to current and former U.S. officials, sparking concerns the attackers were searching for vulnerabilities in the electrical grid.

The intruders could be positioning themselves to eventually disrupt the national power supply, warned the officials, who noted that a general alert was distributed to utilities a week ago. Adding to those concerns, hackers recently infiltrated an unidentified company tha... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/07  |  26 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Health & Safety - Mining, Environmental, Cyber

Dr. Conca reports says ... No. Nuclear plants are still mostly analog and not connected to the Internet. On purpose. Hackers have been penetrating the computer networks of companies that operate nuclear power stations and other energy facilities, as well as manufacturing plants in the U.S. and other countries. But hackers can not affect a nuclear power plant operations or safety systems.

They can hack some business, personnel and other non-essential files, which may be embarrassing and costly, but not dangerous. These reactors are truly operational islands wholly disconnected from ... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/07  |  29 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Related Environmental Issues / Environmental Impact - Cases, Nuclear Wastes

Sonal Patel reports that citing its backing for the long-stalled Yucca Mountain permanent spent nuclear waste repository in Nevada, the new administration has asked a federal court to reject a petition filed by Texas in which the state sought a court-supervised process to take over administrative proceedings so as to guarantee licensing and eventual construction of project.

Texas filed its lawsuit with the 5th Circuit on March 15 in an attempt to stop the Department of Energy (DOE) from spending tax dollars on consent-based siting activity, and to force the Nuclear Regulatory Commis... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/07  |  23 Report Broken   Tell A Friend

Index / Uranium (Nuclear Minerals) / Nuclear Power - Economics, Design, and Industry

WNN reports that a memorandum of understanding (MOU) has been signed by Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom and Vietnam Ministry of Science and Technology on the construction of a nuclear science and technology center in Vietnam. An inter-governmental agreement to build the center was signed between Russia and Vietnam in 2011.

The nuclear science and technology center will be equipped with Russian-designed research reactors, a multipurpose cyclotron, as well as research laboratories, an engineering complex, equipment and infrastructure to ensure the safe operation of the cente... More →
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Find Out More »  |  Open Resource  |  2017/07/05  |  30 Report Broken   Tell A Friend
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