Nuclear power struggles to be competitive in wholesale electricity markets

Hmmmm how do you do that when they WERE only offered in a 6 speed manual.

Hmm, this article says 30 per MWh

The generation of electricity through nuclear power plants in the United States cost 30.41 U.S. dollars per megawatt hour

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“For months …. EdF has been saying that everything will be ok this winter yet on Friday the company announced that another four reactors that were due back online in the coming weeks will be delayed till early next year,” Reid wrote, noting it was the fourth output downgrade in 2022.

“The situation changed drastically this year, when France swung from being one of Europe’s largest exporters of electricity to a net importer because of issues with its reactors,” Bloomberg wrote recently.

“The outages worried officials that France and the broader region might run short of electricity in the winter, when power demand in Europe peaks.”

Good grief. Blackouts in winter. They had a whole year or more to fix some of these problems and delays keep piling up. What a spectacular failure.

And because of this, fossil fuel use, along with “biomass” and natural gas use (heavy carbon footprint as well), are each at their all-time highs, and the supply and demand are only increasing.

Libs don’t get to bitch about man-made climate change while doing everything they can to ensure raising CO2 levels.

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The 53% increase in the SMR’s target power price since 2021 has been driven by a dramatic 75% jump in the project’s estimated construction cost, which has risen from $5.3 billion to $9.3 billion. The new estimate makes the NuScale SMR about as expensive on a dollars-per-kilowatt basis ($20,139/kW) as the two-reactor Vogtle nuclear project currently being built in Georgia, undercutting the claim that SMRs will be cheap to build.

Interesting that the costs are rising to Vogtle levels.

Why do they even bother to market nuclear power as cheap? Policy makers and taxpayers get bent over by lowball estimates everytime, which evaporates the nuclear industry’s political capital.

Just be honest that it’s going to cost a mint. Quality products often do.

Remarkably, the new $89/MWh price of power would be much higher if it were not for more than $4 billion in subsidies NuScale and UAMPS expect to get from U.S. taxpayers through a $1.4 billion contribution from the Department of Energy and the estimated $30/MWh subsidy in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

IRA once again plays a clutch role in the future of America’s energy security.

Flaws tied to so-called thermal fatigue have been found on the pipes of the Penly-2 and Cattenom-3 reactors, the utility said in a statement. The pipes have been replaced as part of broader repairs related to “stress corrosion” cracks — a different type of faults — that are affecting emergency cooling pipes of some of the EDF’s atomic plants, according to the nuclear safety authority.

The news about additional stress corrosion, which according to the watchdog occurred in a part of the reactor which EDF had not considered prone to stress corrosion, comes after five months of intensive repair works at the site.

Can barely keep them running because of 9 digit maintenance gremlins.

According to the report, overnight capital costs of a first-of-a-kind (FOAK) advanced nuclear power plant are expected to range from ~$6,000-$10,000 per kilowatt.

Repeat deployments, known as Nth-of-a-kind (NOAK), are expected to help reduce overnight capital costs by 40%.

Committed orderbooks of 5-10 deployments of at least one reactor design are needed to encourage commercial scale deployment in the U.S. These deployments will help suppliers make capital investment decisions and prove overnight capital cost reductions.

Project delivery for FOAK projects will also need to be reasonably on-time and on-budget in order to generate steady demand for NOAK projects.

5-10 deployments seems like a very tall hurdle, even if Vogtle counts for 2. Three more customers need to be willing to take the chance of emulating a project with 7 years of deadline slip at 250% cost.

For there to be any hope of realizing the timelines in this report, heavy subsidization will be necessary.

The final straw came on Wednesday, when NuScale and the primary utility partner, Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems, announced that the Carbon Free Power Project did not have enough utility partners at a planned checkpoint and, given that uncertainty, would be shut down. In a statement, the pair accepted that “it appears unlikely that the project will have enough subscription to continue toward deployment.”

This isn’t surprising. I think it’s safe to say the nuclear industry is losing the market’s trust in the United States. Something has to change.

Didn’t we build Yucca Mountain for nuclear waste? I might have the wrong mountain, but we built one somewhere.

The problem pretty much is the the envirowenies spent decades bad mouthing and spreading propaganda against the one power type that actually could be clean.


Environmentalists badmouth plenty of stuff–often to little effect.

I think the casual multiplication of costs has more to do with it.

The projected cost of the NuScale project had blown out from US$3.6bn for 720 megawatts in 2020 to US$9.3bn for 462MW last year.

This industry can only trick customers so many times. The AP 1000 (Vogtle) also sold the myth of cheaply mass-produced reactors. There won’t be another AP1000 in the United States because of it.

Instead of selling the lie of cheap, safe, and good work to municipal governments and private entities–they should pitch expensive, safe, and good projects to the federal government.

The nuclear package is expected to speed up the timeline for licensing new nuclear reactors and cut fees that companies have to pay to do so.

Biden has signed the bill.

Absent an 11 to 13 digit subsidy, I am not optimistic that this legislation will make comepitiviely-priced nuclear power a possibility.

“It’s very important for us to solicit your impact, or your input, on what the environmental [characteristics] you believe are present in the community and how the project is going to affect you,” said Joe O’Hara of the NRC’s Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards Division.

Honestly, I don’t think it’s very important at all.

“I just wanted to point out that the world’s most dangerous supervolcano is four hours north and, barring any accident [happening], the consequences could be world changing,” Kemmerer resident Marshal Corwin told Nuclear Regulatory Commission staffers during a Tuesday evening public meeting regarding the project. As for the project’s billionaire backer, “I’m not comfortable doing any deals with the devil,” he added.

Not everyone’s opinion is worth considering. This really should just be a huddle of infrastructure experts, and the landowner.