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Harry "Pinky" Reid says Yucca Mountain will not open.
Other recent comment (DAGS).
"DOE: Cost Estimate Soars for Yucca Mountain Project 08/06/2008 By Pam Hunter and Tom Ichniowski The cost of the proposed nuclear waste repository beneath Nevadas Yucca Mountain has risen sharply. The Dept. of Energy reported on Aug. 5 the projects estimated 150-year life-cycle cost is $96.2 billion, up 67% from 2001s $57.5-billion. DOE says the hike includes $16 billion for inflation and a 26% rise in the amount of spent fuel to be disposed. Construction, operation and decommissioning comprise $54.8 billion of the new figure."
http://enr.ecnext.com/coms2/article_newaar080806d
Intersting photos here:
http://www.yuccamountain.org/photo.htm
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Oren wrote: ...

... Oh, it _will_ open, the question is just how much longer Harry can keep dragging it out. There simply isn't a viable alternative any longer and it is inevitable imo there will begin to be brownouts before we final get past the quagmire which is (also imo) only going to deepen w/ the next adminstration which will focus on the utopian dreams which will turn out to be unrealizable in time if ever. At that point, public opinion will change dramatically and Harry won't matter any longer.
Re: pictures, etc., ... did quite a bit of work there years ago thru consulting firm was working for at the time. Always hated it when was short enough of other work that ever had to work on DOE-sponsored stuff instead of commercial, but in Oak Ridge one always had to hold one's nose and do what needed doing on occasion to stay in groceries. :(
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Obama has made it clear in the past that he does not favor nuclear power and Reid will not have any problem getting his support to continue to stonewall.
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BobR wrote:

Until the lights go out...then sentiment will change overnight.
And, unless something is done sizably w/ conventional generation of one sort or the other, it's inevitable assuming he's not so adamant the he does actually drive the boat into a complete economic collapse.
It's simply not possible w/ any short term alternative technology on the present horizon.
And, don't forget, there are 28+ new units already filed on the NRC licensing docket. There will be some delay owing to the current slowdown undoubtedly that will allow for some additional deferral of demand, but as those new units approach operation and time continues w/ operating units, the spent fuel pools _will_ have to be emptied or the current units will have to shut down with nothing to replace them.
And, of course, also as noted upthread don't forget that if the big-O and his minions are really serious about C-sequestration, there simply is no large-scale alternative w/ the necessary reliability factor. Solar and wind are simply too intermittent for more than the 20% sort of contribution unless he can figure out how to pull a Joshua on the solar and harness the hot air from DC for the wind. Otherwise, afaik, the one sets every night still and will probably continue to do so and the other is sporadic even in the windiest of areas, also somewhat inconveniently at typical minimums in the height of summer and the depth of winter; the two highest demand times of the year.
It's a case of reality will trump hoping for in the end.
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Harry don't matter anyway, imo. I think completion is due in 2020? Just a layman here, BUT there are a lot of transport problems to be faced in our future. Particularly trucking and train safety.

What about earthquakes at Yucca Mt.?
Just yesterday Vegas had a small quake.
"LAS VEGAS -- A 2.6 magnitude earthquake could be felt across the Valley Wednesday night, according to the National Earthquake Center.
The minor earthquake originated from the area of East Lake Mead and North Nellis boulevards, near Nellis Air Force Base."
http://www.fox5vegas.com/news/18199923/detail.html
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Oren wrote: ...

No. Spent fuel transport casks have been demonstrated experimentally to take direct hit from 70-mph railroad locomotive followed by fire and not leak contamination. There's no significant radioactive risk.
...

...
What about them? If worst were to come to worst, it will simply bury the waste underground. Meanwhile, the facility is designed to accommodate seismic activity. There are far more real dangers and boogey men to worry over in this world.
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dpb wrote:

Being buried far underground does not necessarily contain the radioactivity (10,000 years worth?)..
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Norminn wrote:

Even _IF_ (the proverbial "big if" which in this case is simply huge, not just big) it were to happen, that it's underground would prevent any massive immediate release and the effects afterward could be dealt with w/o any need for rush.
I reiterate that there are far more serious boogey men to worry over than some theorized disaster at Yucca Mtn is my point. Sure, a large enough 'quake could make a mess of the facility, but it would not be any nuclear disaster.
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clipped

Which bogeyman is "far more serious" than release of radioactivity into air or water?
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Norminn wrote:

That's the point -- there wouldn't be any significant release.
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Norminn wrote:

There are three, and only three, deleterious health effects of radioactivity:
1. Genetic mutation 2. Radiation sickness 3. Cancer
There has never been a case of a live birth with radiation-induced genetic mutations. With radiation sickness, you either get over it or you die. Cancer is probably the most-studied disease on the planet.
On the other hand, we don't even know the NAMES of all the stuff from a coal-fired power plant's chimney.
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On 12/4/2008 3:21 PM dpb spake thus:

You obviously don't know what the hell you're talking about.
One of the requirements for any high-level nuclear waste repository (such as Yucca Mountain) is that the waste be both monitored and retrievable. They don't just chuck it in there willy-nilly and figure "out of sight, out of mind". Mind you, these are DOE's rules, not those written by some granola-munching tree hugger.
So earthquakes do pose significant risks, and you can be sure that the DOE is paying attention to the reports they get from the USGS.
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powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

You didn't read or at least pay attention to what I wrote upthread. I had already talked of there being seismic criteria for the design and construction of Yucca Mountain. I was simply saying that in the extremely unlikely event of a seismic event even greater than the design basis plus the overdesign that something did happen it would _still_ not cause a nuclear disaster.
A design for a high-level waste repository only requires it be both monitored and retrievable _IF_ that is the goal and design criterion. It does so happen that that is the criterion for Yucca Mountain, true.
The reason for that is, of course, owing to the fact that the reprocessing option had previously been removed from the table leaving this as the only way forward at the time the decision was made.
I reiterate that there are far more serious boogey men to worry over in the world than a postulated seismic event at Yucca Mountain. That is true in large part to what I do know has been included in the design of the facility and what I know from 30 years commercial nuclear power experience of the nature of spent nuclear fuel.
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How does the layman trust the government for the truth on this experiment?
Some how, I read a particular metal would be needed to encase (shielded around) all this mess (10,000 years) and would deplete the earth supply of that material.

I'm just more skeptical of the government than I am of the dangers of a quake. But I live here 100 miles away.
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Oren wrote:

... There are tapes of the impact -- I'm sure if one looked one could find them on the internet by now.
I'm absolutely positive one can still find the reports and look at the pictures.
If you're worried about the black helicopters, sorry I can't help.
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I've seen impacts provided - I'm just not totally CONvinced.

Nope, not at all. It's the government I worry about.
Like I say, just a laymen and non-expert.
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Oren wrote: ...

...
I don't know what the first part is intended to parse to.
What, precisely, aren't you convinced of and why based on test documented test results? You seriously think the test results were somehow fabricated? If that's the case it's tinfoil hat time, sorry.
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I'm not convinced when I see those in "the know" speak out both sides of their mouth.
Just recently the local Mayor declared he would arrest, detain train conductors and await legal matters. The trains will not travel the tracks along the Vegas strip on the way to Yucca Mtn.
I'm not convinced the unknowing can lead the unwilling.
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Oren wrote:

I don't know what you mean, specifically. The question is (or should be) "what is specifically inadequate in the shipping cask design as demonstrated by a failure during test or for what additional achievable condition(s) of any conceivable accident haven't been tested?"
The above statement is unanswerable and doesn't help anything.

More populist politics with no reasonable basis in risk as compared to ordinary activities along the Strip every day. Great for grandstanding politicians to get attention; not so much value for accomplishing anything useful.

Again, the unknowing are more the unwilling than vice versa imo. Another poster upthread claimed the protest movement didn't really affect much and in some minor ways that's true. What it did do, however, is a great disservice in that it raised irrational fear based on ignorance in the general populace.
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dpb wrote: ...

... Other than the aforementioned fact that if so it's only an act of political grandstanding, I'd question whether a local official has the jurisdiction to interfere w/ legitimate interstate commerce?
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