The Forum on Energy weekly news roundup brings together a mix of global energy stories from around the web. It is published every Thursday and is available on Twitter via @forumonenergy
NRA Approves Two Reactors
Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) cleared two more nuclear reactors on Kyushu island for restart. Despite opposition, the NRA ruled that Genkai Nos. 3 and 4 meet post-Fukushima safety rules, clearing one of the biggest hurdles to restart for any operator. Local approval is still required, with a 30 day comment period being the next step. The reactors are expected to restart in the fiscal year ending in March 2018.
India, Japan Aim to Seal Nuclear Deal
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi traveled to Japan to seal a groundbreaking nuclear energy pact. The timing is significant given the American presidential election and China’s shifts regionally. The two countries have been negotiating the deal for approximately six years, navigating the fact that India has not signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty. A “legal, technical scrub” of the text has taken place, but finalization during this trip cannot be guaranteed.
GE-Hitachi Moving Forward with Enrichment Plans
The U.S. Department of Energy announced an agreement to sell depleted uranium to GE-Hitachi Global Laser Enrichment, LLC (GLE) over a 40-year period, bringing the planned $1 billion enrichment facility in McCracken County, Kentucky one step closer to fruition. The facility would help enrich the Department of Energy’s inventory of 65,000 storage cylinders of depleted uranium, producing natural uranium for nuclear reactor fuel.
Source: West Kentucky Star
Vietnam Scraps Nuclear Plans
Vietnam has decided to cancel plans to build the country’s first two nuclear power plants, citing slowing demand for electricity and, according to the head of the state-run Electricity of Vietnam Group, the fact that nuclear is not economically viable because of other cheaper sources of power. The National Assembly is reportedly slated to ratify the government decision later this month. The nuclear project had been approved in 2009, with both Russian and Japanese assistance lined up, but in the wake of the Fukushima accident had already been postponed until 2020.
Source: Asian Correspondent
NorthStar to Decommission Vermont Yankee
Entergy, the owner of shut down nuclear power plant Vermont Yankee, announced that the sale of the facility to NorthStar Group Services will accelerate the decommissioning process. NorthStar is a dismantling and remediation firm, and has agreed to pay an undisclosed price for the site. The transaction must still be approved by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and is projected to be finalized by the end of 2018.
Source: World Nuclear News