Global Energy News Roundup: April 7

shutterstock_399819664The Forum on Energy weekly news roundup brings together a mix of global energy stories from around the web. It is published every Thursday morning on Forum on Energy and is available on Twitter via @forumonenergy.

Japanese Court Upholds Sendai Restart
Local anti-nuclear residents filed an appeal to the Fukoka High Court’s Miyazaki branch, but the court denied the request to shut down the operational Sendai nuclear reactors. Chief Judge Nishikawa ruled that the new regulatory standards are rational, and that there is “no fear of violating residents’ human rights by operation of the reactors.”
Source: Japan Atomic Industrial Forum, Inc.The Financial Times

Amec Foster Wheeler Signs MOU with China
Amec Foster Wheeler signed a wide-ranging agreement with nuclear power plant constructor China Nuclear Engineering & Construction Corporation (CNECC), covering potential collaboration in the nuclear industry such as nuclear power development, construction, operation, and decommissioning. This is the first time that CNECC has agreed to collaborate with a global engineering consultancy on the deployment of high-temperature reactors in the UK and internationally.
Source: PennEnergy

Wisconsin Lifts Nuclear Moratorium
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker lifted a moratorium imposed in 1983 which prevented the state from considering applications to build new nuclear power plants until a federal repository should be available to receive all used fuel from nuclear power plants in the state. Gov. Walker stated, however, “Nuclear energy is an affordable, environmentally safe, and sustainable alternative to fossil fuel,” underscoring his support for the measure. The new law also requires regulators to consider nuclear energy as an option when designing new and replacement energy projects.
Source: World Nuclear News

China Restricts Trade with North Korea to Discourage Nuclear Tests
As a measure to increase pressure on North Korea under UN sanctions against its nuclear and missile tests, China has banned most imports of North Korean coal and iron ore. These commodities are the country’s main exports, of which China buys an estimated two-thirds annually. This development follows a joint promise by Pres. Barack Obama and Pres. Xi Jinping at the Nuclear Security Summit last week to promote denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
Source: ABC News

Japan Completes Major HEU Shipment, Promises More
The US and Japan have competed the removal of all highly enriched uranium (HEU) and separated plutonium from Japan’s Fast Critical Assembly research project, to be shipped to the US for “downblending” and final storage, according to Sec. Moniz and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hagiuda. Furthermore, at the Nuclear Security Summit, PM Abe made a new pledge to give up more HEU from the Kyoto University Critical Assembly, to ship to the US as part of its bid to tighten control over unused nuclear material.
Source: ReutersThe Japan Times