Skip to main content

“Nuclear is indispensable as part of the global energy mix today.”

Just because you’re new at this nuclear energy stuff doesn’t mean you can’t have an opinion about it:

"Countries with nuclear reactors continue to operate their reactors - 434 nuclear power reactors are in operation today, 69 under construction and more are planned," said Mr Al Mazrouei. "This demonstrates, despite the challenges, that nuclear energy will continue to play a significant role in the global energy sector."

Mr. Al Mazrouei is UAE Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei. I doubt nuclear energy was even on his radar 10 years ago, but the UAE recently poured concrete for the second of four planned reactors at Barakah.

And good for him. He was speaking at an IAEA summit in St. Petersburg (Russia, not Florida) and he wasn’t the only emirati there.

"The reality is nuclear is indispensable as part of the global energy mix today," Hamad Al Kaabi, the UAE permanent representative to the IAEA, told The National.

"It continues to be economical and environmentally sound … Fukushima might have slowed down the expansion pace in some countries but the general global outlook for nuclear energy has not changed "

The National is the UAE’s main newspaper and the point of April Yee’s story is to suggest that the wind behind nuclear energy’s sails is coming from developing countries not developed ones. I’m not sure I fully buy the premise or that UAE fits it as well as other countries might – the article also mentions Turkey, ditto – but maybe. It’s certainly true that the atom has broadened its scope and welcomed in some interesting new family members.

---

I took a look at some of the other stories at the National, which has been right on top of Barakah and Enec.

Emiratis in the Western Region are being targeted for training and future employment in the country’s first nuclear power program.

The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec) is focusing its recruitment efforts and scholarships programs on such citizens ahead of its 2017 opening.

I believe the western regions refers to sections of Abu Dhabi, where Barakah is sited, not the other emirates per se. UAE is a collection of seven emirates, more of a Canadian confederation than a United States; still, it’s sort of odd not to extend these opportunities across the whole country (if I’m right).

“We have 260 students in our scholarship programs, and by the end of 2013 we are hoping to have about 410 students recruited.”

Mr Al Qahtani said Enec was offering a range of exclusive scholarships and career opportunities to train the most talented science students and experienced professionals to become pioneers of the emerging nuclear energy sector.

Fahad Al Qahtani is the external communications director at Enec.

The National also has a story about Barakah’s impact on the town nearest it, Al Ruwais.

“To quote our chief executive, for every nuclear-plant employee we will need six workers in supporting services,” Mr Al Qahtani said.“These supporting services include schools, shops, restaurants and so on.”

This means the town, in the Western Region 240 kilometres west of Abu Dhabi city, will see rapid growth, with at least 17,000 people arriving: 2,000 plant workers with 3,000 family members, plus 12,000 support workers.

Exactly the kind of things that happen here, with perhaps some differences because of the widely spaced towns in a desert environment – there’s a lot of housing construction going on is Al Ruwais.

This nuclear energy thing is working out pretty well for UAE.

---

Closer to home, the funniest line of the day, from The Motley Fool:

Few things are as controversial as nuclear energy.

Read the newspaper today or any day. Does nuclear energy really seem the most controversial thing? Really?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Making Clouds for a Living

Donell Banks works at Southern Nuclear’s Plant Vogtle units 3 and 4 as a shift supervisor in Operations, but is in the process of transitioning to his newly appointed role as the daily work controls manager. He has been in the nuclear energy industry for about 11 years.

I love what I do because I have the unique opportunity to help shape the direction and influence the culture for the future of nuclear power in the United States. Every single day presents a new challenge, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As a shift supervisor, I was primarily responsible for managing the development of procedures and programs to support operation of the first new nuclear units in the United States in more than 30 years. As the daily work controls manager, I will be responsible for oversight of the execution and scheduling of daily work to ensure organizational readiness to operate the new units.

I envision a nuclear energy industry that leverages the technology of today to improve efficiency…

Nuclear: Energy for All Political Seasons

The electoral college will soon confirm a surprise election result, Donald Trump. However, in the electricity world, there are fewer surprises – physics and economics will continue to apply, and Republicans and Democrats are going to find a lot to like about nuclear energy over the next four years.

In a Trump administration, the carbon conversation is going to be less prominent. But the nuclear value proposition is still there. We bring steady jobs to rural areas, including in the Rust Belt, which put Donald Trump in office. Nuclear plants keep the surrounding communities vibrant.

We hold down electricity costs for the whole economy. We provide energy diversity, reducing the risk of disruption. We are a critical part of America’s industrial infrastructure, and the importance of infrastructure is something that President-Elect Trump has stressed.

One of our infrastructure challenges is natural gas pipelines, which have gotten more congested as extremely low gas prices have pulled m…

Innovation Fuels the Nuclear Legacy: Southern Nuclear Employees Share Their Stories

Blake Bolt and Sharimar Colon are excited about nuclear energy. Each works at Southern Nuclear Co. and sees firsthand how their ingenuity powers the nation’s largest supply of clean energy. For Powered by Our People, they shared their stories of advocacy, innovation in the workplace and efforts to promote efficiency. Their passion for nuclear energy casts a bright future for the industry.

Blake Bolt has worked in the nuclear industry for six years and is currently the work week manager at Hatch Nuclear Plant in Georgia. He takes pride in an industry he might one day pass on to his children.

What is your job and why do you enjoy doing it?
As a Work Week Manager at Plant Hatch, my primary responsibility is to ensure nuclear safety and manage the risk associated with work by planning, scheduling, preparing and executing work to maximize the availability and reliability of station equipment and systems. I love my job because it enables me to work directly with every department on the plant…