Thursday, July 28, 2005

The NEI Morning Clip File

Here are some of the news clips we're reading at NEI this morning. Things are looking good on the energy bill front, as the House is poised to approve it when once it comes time for a final vote:

The House was set Thursday to approve an energy bill packed with $14.5 billion in tax breaks and incentives and hailed by Republicans as a major change in U.S. energy policy.

The bill will pass "overwhelmingly" in the House, predicted Rep. Joe Barton, a Texas Republican and author of much of the 1,700-page legislation.

The Senate is expected to approve it Friday, just before Congress recesses for its summer vacation. President Bush has indicated he will sign the energy bill, which he called one of his top priorities in 2005.

"The enactment of this bill is needed to put us on a path to greater energy and economic security," said Treasury Secretary John Snow. "It will help American workers, families and businesses by increasing energy efficiency and conservation and reducing our dependence on foreign sources of energy."
Elsewhere, the chief executive of British Energy says he is "not to be distracted" by possible government plans for new nuclear plants. Rather, he is focusing his energy on extending the life of current plants:
Instead, he has upped investment in BE's eight existing nuclear power stations - from £162 million last year to £230-250m - and launched investigations into pushing back the dates they are due to expire. Dungeness, in Kent, is first on the list, as it is due to be shut down in 2008.

Coley said: "Dungeness could be extended by about five to ten years, and we will find out how long in the autumn. This is a priority for us - alongside financial stability and improving reliability." However, if new nuclear stations are built, it is likely that a consortium involving BE would be asked to run them.
It's important to note that uprates of existing American nuclear power plants has helped this country add the equivalent of 18 nuclear power plants to our electrical grid over the last 10 years. In addition, plans by reactor owners to apply for relicensing of the vast majority of the nation's nuclear power plants has relieved considerable pressure from America's power grid as well.

Come back this afternoon for more news from the NEI Clip File.

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