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The Fukushima Accident: Consequences for Global Nuclear Power

The Fukushima Accident: Consequences for Global Nuclear Power

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The Fukushima Accident: Consequences for Global Nuclear Power

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  1. The Fukushima Accident:Consequences for Global Nuclear Power Charles McCombie Arius Association, Switzerland AAEA Meeting Expert meeting on Technical and Economical Feasibility of NPP in Arab countries Hammamet, Tunisia, 17-19 June 2013

  2. Great East Japan Earthquake • Post natural disaster reaction amongst nuclear power generating nations Instant panic Premature complacency Think long and hard – then act

  3. Fukushima Impacts • Operation of current nuclear plants • Stress tests • Emergency Planning • Development of national nuclear programmes • Business as usual – including expansion • Stop/Reduce • Case studies – Germany, Switzerland

  4. EU Stress Tests • Approach • Common methodology; multinational teams • Assessments of extreme natural events • All NPPs (17 countries 145 NPPs) • Results • No NPP to be shut down for safety reasons • Need for improvements in almost all • Some potential improvements in the spent fuel pools • Costs ~EUR 200M/reactor (145 NPPs) -> EUR 25B

  5. Reactions to EU Stress Reults • European Parliament March 2013 • Criticism of completeness • New safety Directive planned for 2013 • New study on emergency preparedness and response • Various specific improvements being initiated (e.g. improved venting systems)

  6. Swiss Safety Inspectorate (18thMar 2011) • Implement an external store (earthquake and flood proof); sufficiently far from the NPPs containing: • Emergency power supplies • Batteries, measuring instruments • Mobile pumps, cables, piping • Transportable fuels • Borated materials • All transportable by helicopter

  7. Fukushima:deaths due to evacuation • Total no of evacuees 333,000 • In Fukushima, around 134,000 people of which around 100,0000 were evacuees of the nuclear plant accident • 1632 deaths (“physical and psychological fatigue”) • 34 deaths from “emotional stress due to nuclear accident”

  8. EPA Protective Action Guide • Planning for emergency response to radiological incidents • Three principles in establishing exposure levels for the PAGs— • 1. Prevent acute effects • 2. Balance protection with other important factors and ensure that actions result in more benefit than harm • 3. Reduce risk of chronic effects

  9. EPA Protective Action Guide • Early Phase: The PAG for evacuation or sheltering-in-place is a projected whole body dose of 1 to 5 rem (10 – 50 mSv) total effective dose (TED) over four days. Response worker guidelines of 5, 10 or 25 rem (50, 100 or 250 mSv) are based on the urgency of activities and knowledge of the risks involved • Intermediate Phase: The PAG for relocation is 2 rem (20 mSv) over the first year of exposure. After the first year, the PAG for relocation is 0.5 rem (5 mSv) per year • Late Phase: Exposure limits in a range of one in a population of ten thousand (10-4) to one in a population of one million (10-6) excess lifetime cancer incidence outcomes are generally considered protective, though this may not be achievable after a large radiological incident

  10. NCRP – Late recovery • The recovery requires careful planning for the return of the population to a condition no longer under emergency status — known as the “new normal” • The optimisation approach has since been balanced to include incidents that could result from the terrorism events or off-site • When the incident has moved into the late phase, the situation is considered an existing exposure situation. Dose limits do not apply because existing exposure situations cannot be managed in a priori fashion (ICRP, 2009a). • The reference level recommended by ICRP Publication 103 (ICRP, 2007) for optimisation is a range of 1 to 20 mSv y-1

  11. Significant Policy Change …or Panic? • Germany • Cease nuclear power generation by 2022. Significant increase in fossil fuel power • Switzerland • Nuclear power generation will cease by 2034; also needs fossil power • Belgium • Revert to earlier decision to phase out • Kuwait • Postponed/slowed down programme, research reactor only

  12. Germany: Fr Merkel • Oct 2010 CDU decidestoextend NPP lifetimes. Merkel and CDU were pronuclear • German NPPs “the safest in the world” (2010) • Fukushima 11 Mar 2011; German elections 27th Mar 2011 • 14th March “three month moratorium” announced • Phase out by 2022 now planned • German electricity already expensive (24¢/kWh); UK=14; Fr=13

  13. Shutdowneffects on Germany • Siemens: costing of the nuclear shutdown ranges from €11 billion to €252 billion • This comes on top of the general cost of the energy policy and takes the total to €1, 670 trillion • Immediate effects: • Changes in electricity import-export • Rush to finish building 10 GWe of fossil power plants • Short-term reliance on an oil-fuelled plant in Austria • Emission of 370 million tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2020 • Expensive electricity

  14. Switzerland: FrLeuthard • FrLeuthard (Energy Minister) und CVP were pro-nuclear; • 11th Mar 2011 Fukushima; Swiss elections Oct 2011 • 26nd March 2011: Energy Minister: «Without knowing the exact consequences, it is foolish to demand that Switzerland gives up nuclear power.“ • 25th May: Government decisions: • Swiss people wishes to reduce nuclear risks • Switzerland will move out of nuclear energy • No need for immediate shutdown because Swiss NPPs are safe (!)

  15. Switzerland: public opinion Jan 2013 • 61% believe nuclear power is necessary • 74% are convinced Swiss NPPs are safe • 63% recognise economic benefits of nuclear • 52.6% believe waste problem is solvable • 75% wants electricity supply to be self-sufficient • (Only) 43% believe that the NPPs ease the CO2 problem

  16. Shutdowneffects on Switzerland • The Governement (DETEC) has already estimated that phasing out nuclear energy will cost it around CHF 30 billion ($33 billion) by 2050. • A review by the International Energy Agency (IEA) recently highlighted the difficulties that the country will face in trying to achieve its carbon dioxide reduction goals while attempting to phase out nuclear power. • “In the absence of nuclear power, maintaining sufficient electricity capacity will require strong policies to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy. Such measures have already been outlined, but they will likely not be enough”

  17. New Energy Policy of Swiss Governement To replace the nuclear power and reach the generating capacity proposed by the government for 2015, Switzerland would need: + 10’000’000Solar panelseach10 m2 1’000’000 Tons ofbiomass per year + + More than1000Windturbinesà 2 MW 25River hydro plant likeBeznau + + 175Geothermal Power plants 2-3Storage damsas in Grimsel From NuklearforumSchweiz

  18. Howbigare solar parks? • Solarpark WaldpolenznearLeipzig (Sachsen) • 40 Megawatt capacity • 550’000 Solar panels • Feed-in tariff> 50 Rp. pro kWh • In Switzerland, a facility like this would produce in one year about the same electricity as the Gösgen NPP does in two days. Wind From NuklearforumSchweiz

  19. Input from Swiss Nuklearforum

  20. Some Policy Change • Japan • Review of energy policy; and new independent regulator. The government is formulating a new energy mix formula, with options for atomic power ranging from zero to 35% of electricity by 2030 against an earlier target of more than half • China • Government supports nuclear power but temporarily suspended approval process for new reactors • Italy • Nuclear option is off the table for at least 5 years • Jordan • Schedule pushed back but still enthusiastic

  21. No Significant Policy Change • Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Finland, France, India, Iran, Russia, Slovakia, South Korea, UAE, USA • Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Indonesia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Turkey, Ukraine, UK, Vietnam • Egypt, Hungary, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa • Sweden Constructing Planning Proposed based on WNA data

  22. EU Countries Support for Nuclear Power • Joint Ministerial Communique Statement 13th March 2013: NPPs • Help ensure security of supply • Reduce CO2 • Provide economic benefits • Need suitable investment environment • Signatories • Bulgaria; Czech republic; Finland; France; Hungary; Lithuania; Netherlands; Poland; Romania; Slovakia; Spain; UK

  23. Nuclear Power Plants under Construction From WNA website

  24. World Nuclear Power (IAEA 2013-05-26)

  25. NPPS: a) operation or construction b) planned or proposed

  26. What can we do to ensure that nuclear power prevails? • Correct false assertions about safety • Correct false assertions about waste management • Correct false assertions about economics

  27. U.S. Sailors Sue Japan Over Fukushima •  “They’ve got leukemia, they have growths, they’re undergoing surgery to remove lesions in their brains, a couple of them have had them and have lost the sight in their eye,” Attorney Paul C. Garner     •  They are seeking $10 million in compensatory damages and $30 million in punitive damages for fraud, negligence, strict liability, failure to warn, public and private nuisance, and defective design. They also want TEPCO ordered to establish a fund of $100 million to pay for their medical expenses

  28. UNSCEAR Report 2013 • UN Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR): "Radiation exposure following the nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi did not cause any immediate health effects. It is unlikely to be able to attribute any health effects in the future among the general public and the vast majority of workers."

  29. Karecha and Hansen 2013

  30. The “Waste Problem” • Greenpeace: Only countries that face the unsolvable problem of radioactive waste head-on by ending their reliance on nuclear power can stop the vicious circle that shifts responsibility to the next generations.” • Blue Ribbon Commission: “Deep geological disposal is the most promising and accepted method currently available for safely isolating spent fuel and high-level radioactive wastes from the environment for very long periods of time.”

  31. Economics of Nuclear Power • The Economist: ”Since the 1970s, far from being “too cheap to meter”—as it`s proponents once blithely claimed—nuclear power has proved too expensive to matter.” • World Nuclear Association: “Nuclear power is cost competitive with other forms of electricity generation, except where there is direct access to low-cost fossil fuels.”

  32. New 2013 Report from IEA The world is not on track to meet the target agreed by governments to limit the long-term rise in the average global temperature to 2 degrees Celsius (°C). Energy is at the heart of this challenge: the energy sector accounts for around two-thirds of greenhouse-gas emissions, as more than 80 of global energy consumption is based on fossil fuels If governments are serious about addressing climate change, nuclear energy is one of the key options to look into because it generates electricity at a low cost and does not emit carbon-dioxide

  33. Take-away Messages • Fukushima did NOT cause any nuclear deaths • Nuclear power remains safe and environmentally friendly • ….. IF it is implemented and maintained in a responsible manner • Nuclear power is expanding globally • New generation nuclear plants will be even safer • The challenges facing nuclear power remain: • Ensuring operational safety • Establishing a credible waste management system • Keeping the economics competitive with alternatives

  34. The end • Thank You