Ukraine to pay US $1.4 billion to become a “nuclear dump”

Ukraine is a country in economic and social free fall after the coup that overthrew its government in 2014.  Nuclear waste dumps in stable countries have many serious problems. A nuclear dump in Ukraine will be a disaster. 

From Fort Russ News

November 16 , 2017

Vesti-Ukr  – translated by Inessa Sinchougova
Outside Kiev, they have begun to build a repository for used nuclear fuel, in order to abandon the apparently expensive Russian waste services. The authorities assure that it does not carry a threat to people, but local residents and environmentalists are seriously concerned.
Not far from Kiev, in the Chernobyl exclusion zone, the construction of a centralized storage of used nuclear fuel has begun. The construction site is located between the former villages of Staraya Krasniţa, Buryakivka, Chistogalovka and Stechanka of the Kiev region. As reported in the Ministry of Energy, the cost of construction will cost Ukraine $ 1.4 billion. The facility will be a platform which will build concrete containers of nuclear waste. The full construction is planned to be erected within 16.5 years in 15 stages.
“Financing will be carried out by the operator of Ukraine’s NPPs – Energoatom company, without attracting funds from the state budget, while more than 80% of the amount ($ 1.17 billion) will be spent on technological equipment,” the agency noted.
So far, in Ukraine there was only one such storage facility – at Zaporizhzhya NPP. To date, used fuel at Ukrainian NPPs was shipped for processing to Russia. For this, depending on the volume, Ukraine annually paid $ 150-200 million. Therefore, in order to save money, the authorities decided to build their own nuclear burial ground 100 km from the capital – with an American company.
Are the savings justified?
As the head of the Supervisory Board of the Institute of Energy Strategies, Yuri Korolchuk, stated – in the current political situation the construction looks favourable, but the main question is how effectively the project will be implemented.
Despite the fact that the construction company will be working with the American company Holtec, its own specialists will not be working in Ukraine. Instead, they will involve other contractors, maybe even Ukrainian ones, so how much the project will be environmentally safe and technically effective remains a mystery,” says Korolchuk.

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— US Senate Bill 2795 on deregulation of the nuclear industry – the conflicts of interests of author and sponsors — Senators Inhofe, Booker, Crapo, Whitehouse, Fischer

Sen. James Inhofe, S. 2795: “The existing fleet of nuclear reactors in the United States is operating safely and securely.

From Mining Awareness

April 29, 2016

It is perfectly possible that Inhofe, Booker, Crapo et. al. are simply lazy, stupid and ignorant in pushing a bill (S. 2795) claiming that US nuclear reactors are “operating safely and securely”. Maybe they’ve just observed that the US NRC does exactly what the nuclear industry wants anyway so should indeed have funding cut. It is actually pretty funny that all the workers at US NRC that have sold their soul to the nuclear devil have their jobs on the cutting block anyway. So, the proposal to cut funding to the US NRC is actually pretty funny. Watch and learn before you sell your soul to the devil. However, many NRC workers will just go home to their countries of origin, leaving the children of the American Revolution and others who have no other home stuck with their nuclear crimes. But, why not just totally shut down the US NRC?

The attempt by Inhofe et. al. to stop mandatory hearings for new nuclear reactor types suggests other nefarious motives:https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2016/04/27/us-senate-efforts-to-do-away-with-mandatory-licensing-hearings-for-so-called-advanced-nuclear-reactors-small-modular-reactors/

According to the idiotic statement in the Senator Inhofe sponsored bill S2795, “the existing fleet of nuclear reactors in the United States is operating safely and securely;…” (S.2795 — 114th Congress https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/2795/all-actions?resultIndex=3&overview=closed Sponsor: Sen. Inhofe, James M. [R-OK]). Inhofe and his co-sponsors can’t read? The list of safety related problems-“incidents” reported to the US NRC appears endless: http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/event/

http://www.c-span.org/video/?408515-1/hearing-nuclear-energy&start=5937 Why is the entire panel pro-nuclear? Read about them at the bottom of this post. Second from the left is Ashley Finan who works for the so-called “
Clean Air Task Force”, but has promoted the use of nuclear power in the Canadian tar sands industry.

The electrical defects for all but one US nuclear power station are so serious that 7 brave NRC electrical engineers put themselves at risk by demanding something be done immediately. They were ignored. These brave seven were led by an American from India who loves America. And, maybe he’s just smart enough to understand that the world environment is interconnected too.

This claim about the safety and security of US Nuclear Power Stations and push for nuclear deregulation is oddly coming from a Senator (Inhofe) from Oklahoma where there are no operating nuclear power stations, though Oklahoma is the location of the infamous Kerr-McGee site where Karen Silkwood worked.

Does Inhofe’s bill have to do with campaign contributions related to Andarko? https://www.opensecrets.org/politicians/contrib.php?cycle=2012&cid=N00005582 Andarko inherited the Kerr-McGee liability:
http://www.nrc.gov/info-finder/decommissioning/complex/kerr-mcgee-cimarron-corporation-former-fuel-fabrication-facility.html

Maybe Inhofe’s bill has to do with his funding related to Honeywell International: https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2015/08/04/us-nrc-launches-special-inspection-at-honeywell-uranium-hex-facility-in-metropolis-illinois/

And, funding to Inhofe related to Southern Co. with their Vogtle Nuclear Reactors, both old and under construction?https://www.opensecrets.org/politicians/contrib.php?type=C&cid=N00005582&newMem=N&cycle=2016 More overt, of course, is Inhofe’s military industrial complex funding.

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US-Ukraine “partnership” threatens new Chernobyl-style disaster

The company Holtec mentioned here is the company making the San Onofre nuclear waste storage system that the California Coastal Commission approved in 2015 to be installed at the ocean adjacent to millions of people in Southern California. The canisters are not inspectable and may be prone to cracking.

But what could go wrong?

From Fort Russ

April 27, 2015 –
Leonid Savin, Katehon

April 26, 2016 will mark the 30th anniversary of the catastrophic explosion of the 4th reactor at the Chernobyl power plant, the effects of which are felt to this very day. This comes at a time when alarming news has arrived which evokes concern over the future of Ukraine’s nuclear industry.
The problems started  along with the “Maidan” coup backed by the US and EU, because Washington immediately started to lobby for a large deal in its own interests, including nuclear industry projects.
The Ukrainian state enterprise Energoatom and the Westinghouse Company (US), agreed in 2014 to extend the contract to supply Ukrainian nuclear power plants with US nuclear fuel, until 2020.
But the use of US produced fuel for Soviet reactors is not compatible with their design, and violates security requirements, and could lead to disasters comparable with what happened in Chernobyl. The International Union of Veterans of Nuclear Energy and Industry (IUVNEI) issued the following statement on April 25th, that “Nuclear fuel produced by the US firm Westinghouse does not meet the technical requirements of Soviet-era reactors, and using it could cause an accident on the scale of the Chernobyl disaster, which took place on the 26th April 1986.” The IUVNEI brings together more than 15,000 nuclear industry veterans from Armenia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Finland, the Czech Republic, Russia, Slovakia and Ukraine. It was founded in 2010 and is headquartered in Moscow.

Four years ago, there was a near-miss in the Ukraine, when a TVS-W unit with damaged distancing armatures, nearly experienced a significant uncontrolled release of dangerous radiation. Only by a miracle was there no disaster at the South Ukrainian nuclear power plant. But it did not prevent the signing of the agreement. A Czech nuclear power plant experienced a depressurization of fuel elements produced by Westinghouse several years ago, followed by the Czech government’s abandoning the company as a fuel supplier. According to Yuri Nedashkovsky, the president of the country’s state-owned nuclear utility Energoatom, on April 23th, 2014 Ukraine’s interim government ordered an allocation of 45.2 hectares of land for the construction of a nuclear waste storage site within the depopulated exclusion area around the plant of Chernobyl, between the villages of Staraya Krasnitsa, Buryakovka, Chistogalovka and Stechanka in the Kiev Region (the Central Spent Fuel Storage Project for Ukraine’s VVER reactors). The fuel is to come from Khmelnitsky, Rovno and South Ukraine nuclear power plants.
At present, used fuel is mostly transported to a new dry-storage facility at the Zheleznogorsk Mining and Chemical Factory in the Krasnoyarsk region, and storage and reprocessing plant Mayak in the Chelyabinsk region; the both facilities are situated in the Russian Federation.
In 2003, Ukraine started to look for alternatives to the Russian storage units. In December 2005, Energoatom signed a 127.8 million euro agreement with the US-based Holtec International to implement the Central Spent Fuel Storage Project for Ukraine’s VVER reactors. Holtec’s work involved design, licensing, construction, commissioning of the facility, and the supply of transport and vertical ventilated dry storage systems for used VVER nuclear fuel. By the end of 2011 Holtec International had to close its office in Kiev as it had come under harsh criticism worldwide. It is widely believed that the company has lost licenses in some countries because of the poor quality of its containers resulting in radiation leaks.  Westinghouse and Holtec are members of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council (USUBC). Morgan Williams, President/CEO of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council, has worked in Ukraine since the 1990’s.
“Today is one of the most important days since Ukraine’s independence as the efforts of these two internationally known companies will go a long way to assuring that Ukraine has greater energy independence,” he said at the ceremony devoted to  Westinghouse Electric Company and Holtec International signing contracts with Ukraine. The President of USUBC added, “This is made more important by the fact that for Ukraine, energy and political independence are closely interdependent. I join all of the USUBC members in toasting the success of these two great member companies, as we all work to assist Ukraine on its path to Euro-Atlantic integration and a strong democratic, private market driven nationhood.”
Morgan Williams is known as a lobbyist representing the interests of Shell, Chevron and ExxonMobil in Ukraine. He has direct links with Freedom House which is involved in staging “color revolutions” in Eurasia, North Africa and Latin America.
One more interesting fact to be mentioned here. In Spring 2014 it was reported that according to covert agreements reached between Ukraine’s interim government and its European partners, the nuclear waste coming from EU member states would be stored in Ukraine.  Being in violation of the law, the deal is kept secret. Some high standing officials in Kiev were remunerated. It is said that Alexander Musychko (Sashko Biliy), a prominent nationalist from Rovno, tried to blackmail the Kiev rulers threatening to make the conspiracy public. That’s why he was killed, on the orders of the Minister of Internal Affairs, Arsen Avakov.
US is the main manager of the self-isolation of the Ukrainian regime from Russia, which has greatly impacted cooperation between two countries, as well as in the area of nuclear security. The administration of the Chernobyl nuclear plant has stated clearly that the process is going in wrong way.

– California Coastal Commission approves nuclear waste storage on the beach

This photo from San Onofre Safety shows where Southern California Edison wants to store nuclear waste. It’s circled in yellow.

Location of Holtec system. SCE

The company making the canisters has already been in trouble.

By the end of 2011 Holtec International had to close its office in Kiev as it had come under harsh criticism worldwide. It is widely believed that the company has lost licenses in some countries because of the poor quality of its containers resulting in radiation leaksWestinghouse and Holtec are members of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council (USUBC).
http://www.fort-russ.com/2016/04/us-ukraine-partnership-threatens-new.html

What could go wrong????? This is only located adjacent to millions of Californians and on the ocean.

From San Onofre Safety

Southern California Edison plans to make another bad decision by unsafely storing over 1600 metric tons of highly radioactive nuclear waste.

Below is the proposed location for the Holtec HI-STORM UMAX thin “underground” spent fuel canister system at San Onofre. Half under ground, and close to the water table and about 100 feet from the ocean. Edison admits the Sea Wall hasn’t been maintained so can’t be counted on for protection. This plan doesn’t meet Coastal Act requirements, but Coastal Commission staff think there are no other options, but there are.

Holtec Side View

 Request Coastal Commission REVOKE Nuclear Storage Permit (handout)

Excerpt:

Request Coastal Commission REVOKE Nuclear Storage Permit

The California Coastal Commission granted a Coastal permit for the San Onofre Holtec nuclear waste storage facility with “Special Conditions” that are unlikely or impossible to meet.

Special Conditions require a storage system that can be inspected, repaired, maintained, monitored, and transported without cracks but only after 20 years. The Coastal Commission recognizes the Holtec system does not currently meet these requirements, but have been convinced by Edison and others there are no other reasonable options and someday these problems will all be solved. However, there is insufficient evidence to support that and evidence to the contrary.

Reasons to revoke SoCal Edison Coastal Development Permit #9-15-0228

Coastal requirements for nuclear waste storage should be met now, not deferred 20 years.

The Coastal Commission may not have the jurisdiction to choose casks, but can require their special conditions be met now. Thin (1/2” to 5/8” thick) stainless steel canisters can crack, cannot be inspected,

repaired, maintained or adequately monitored. Cracked canisters cannot be transported. The Coastal Commission should require a system that does not have these flaws and not accept promises of future solutions.

Edison can meet Coastal requirements with thick casks. For example, Areva sells thick (over 10” thick) metal casks to the U.S. market, and to most of the rest of the world for storage and transport.

The Areva TN‐32 and TN‐40 are licensed by the NRC. The TN‐24 used at Fukushima survived the massive earthquake and tsunami. Spent fuel must cool in the pools for a few years, so choosing proven thick storage casks will not significantly delay removing fuel from pools.

Canisters cannot be repaired. Holtec President says these canisters cannot be repaired.

Partially cracked canisters cannot be transported. NRC Regulation 10 CFR § 71.85.

Canisters may crack. The NRC states it takes about 16 years for a crack to go through the wall of thin stainless steel canisters and canisters are vulnerable to cracking from marine environments.

A similar component at the Koeberg nuclear plant failed in 17 years with numerous cracks. A Diablo Canyon canister has all the conditions for cracking in a 2‐year old canister.

No funds are available to relocate this system. Once the system is installed, there are no funds to rebuild and move it to a different site, so it is not reasonable to expect it will be relocated (even onsite).

Edison’s $1.3 billion Spent Fuel Management Plan to the California Public Utilities Commission assumes nothing will go wrong and they will not need to pay to move the fuel on‐site or elsewhere.

Edison’ plan assumes the Dept. of Energy will start picking up the fuel in 2024, which Edison admitted to the CPUC is unlikely.

Vaporware is not a solution. The Coastal Commission should not base decisions on “vaporware” – promises of solutions that do not exist with no guarantee they will exist in the future. Even State of California procurement rules do not allow procurement of “vaporware”.

Edison plans to destroy the spent fuel pools. Pools are the only method to replace canisters.

The Commission should add a special condition to not destroy pools unless a better plan is in place.

Existing 51 thin canisters may have cracks. Fuel loading into thin canisters began in 2003, so “special

conditions” for aging management and related issues should be addressed now.

Act now: Email Joseph.Street@coastal.ca.gov More info & references at SanOnofreSafety.org

https://sanonofresafety.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/revokecoastalpermit2015-11-5.pdf