Jim Conca

China To Build The First Small Modular Nuclear Reactor – Of Course

Jim Conca

China has 49 nuclear reactors in operation, 17 under construction, and another 100 planned by 2035. China has also established the first national institute dedicated to nuclear. So, of course, they’ve started building their first small modular reactor, the Linglong One.

New Nuclear Fuel Can Be Here Even Faster Than New Reactors

Jim Conca

New nuclear fuel made from U and Th, called ANEEL, can address several issues with nuclear power – cost, proliferation and waste, especially when used in CANDU/PHWR reactors. And it will be here soon not in the 2030s. It’s made-in-America makes it a prime candidate for export to emerging markets.


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America’s Aging Infrastructure Gets C-Minus On Its Report Card

Jim Conca

The American Society of Civil Engineers gave us a C- on our infrastructure report card with Aviation (D+), Bridges (C), Dams (D), Drinking Water (C-), Hazardous Waste (D+), Inland Waterways (D+), Public Parks (D+), Ports (B-), Rail (B), Roads (D), Transit (D-), Wastewater (D+) and Energy (C-).

What’s Happening? Global Emissions Are Still Rising

Jim Conca

Global electricity demand will increase almost 10% by 2022, and half of this will be fossil fuel, particularly new coal in the developing world. Nuclear will grow by only 2%, and is one important reason emissions will grow so much during this period.

How Digital Transformation will Bend the Curve of the Linear Economy Toward the Circular

Speaker: Bruce Armstrong Taylor, Co-Founder & Managing Director of SmartNations Foundation, Jimmy Jia, Venture Partner at Pi Labs, Fabienne Durand, Senior Advisor to the SmartNations Foundation, & Roger Strukhoff, Executive Director of the Tau Institute

The Carbon Zero, Circular Economy, is easily the most profoundly important result of digital transformation. Industry 4.0 has a massively cumulative impact on dematerialization (in all forms) and resultant decarbonization (both emissions and embodied) throughout the economy. Join panelists Bruce Armstrong Taylor, Jimmy Jia, Fabienne Durand, and their moderator Roger Strukhoff as they discuss how bending the carbon/GHG heavy linear economy to the circular is one of the hidden benefits of digital disruption.

Irrational Nuclear Fear Puts Sweden In Danger Of Succumbing To Stupidity

Jim Conca

With 78% of the population supporting nuclear power, Sweden’s plan to prematurely shut down its entire nuclear fleet is bizarre, especially since it will add over 2 billion tons of CO2 emissions, cause the loss of $120 billion in taxes and undermine their grid reliability when it's really cold.

Wyoming To Lead The Coal-To-Nuclear Transition

Jim Conca

States like Wyoming and Montana are evaluating replacing coal with nuclear and Bill Gates’ TerraPower, has partnered with GE Hitachi, Bechtel, Energy Northwest, Duke Energy, DOE and the State of Wyoming to do just that with their new 345MW fast reactor with a molten salt-based energy storage system.

Japan Will Release Radioactive Fukushima Water Into The Ocean

Jim Conca

And that’s exactly what they should do. And the International Atomic Energy Agency agrees. Only a small amount of tritium is left, so trivial that it could not harm humans or anything in the environment.

China Will Lead The World In Nuclear Energy, Along With All Other Energy Sources, Sooner Than You Think

Jim Conca

China will soon have more nuclear than America and France combined. China plans to build another hundred reactors by 2035, their domestically-developed third-generation reactor designs, which in turn are based on the Westinghouse AP1000 reactor of the type we are building at Vogtle in Georgia.

Energy 351

NuScale Small Modular Nuclear Reactor Moves Another Step Forward

Jim Conca

The small modular nuclear reactor designed by NuScale has received an order to prepare for a combined construction and operating license application to build their SMR as part of the Carbon Free Power Project of Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS).

Finland Breaks Ground On Its Deep Geologic Nuclear Waste Repository

Jim Conca

The Finnish waste management company, Posiva Oy, announced the start of excavation on their deep geologic nuclear waste repository for their spent nuclear fuel. Operation of the repository is expected to begin in 2023. The total cost estimate is about €2.6 billion ($3.4 billion).

Waste 300

AR/VR Simulations for Sustainable, Regenerative, Circular Cities

Speaker: Nik Gowing, Brenda Laurel, Sheridan Tatsuno, Archie Kasnet, and Bruce Armstrong Taylor

Join our amazing panelists, Nik Gowing, Founder at Thinking the Unthinkable and International Broadcaster; Brenda Laurel, PhD, Principal, Neogaian Interactive; Sheridan Tatsuno, Principal, Dreamscape Global; Archie Kasnet, CEO, Regenerative; and Bruce Armstrong Taylor, The Climate 4.0 Project, to discuss how today's AR/VR and related AI-enabled technologies can be effectively applied, using data from such sources as NASA and NOAA, to both improve and accelerate urban sustainability planning and design.

Wind Turbines On Washington’s Horse Heaven Hills – How Not To Pursue A Green New Deal

Jim Conca

A company out of Boulder, CO called Scout Clean Energy has applied for a permit to build a massive turbine wind farm in Washington State on the Horse Heaven Hills, circumventing the local government. But they’re building it in the wrong state.

International Marine Shipping Industry Considers Nuclear Propulsion

Jim Conca

The international shipping industry wants to reduce their rather large carbon footprint and are considering installing nuclear power in their increasingly large ships. It would save billions of barrels of oil per year. And they only have to adopt the Nuclear Navy’s protocols to be safe and easy.

Nuclear Power Continues To Break Records In Safety And Generation

Jim Conca

Energy Northwest in Richland, WA, which operates the only nuclear power plant in the region, the Columbia Generating Station, has earned the American Public Power Association’s Safety Award of Excellence for safe operating practices in 2020. Not to mention breaking all generation records.

Washington State Senate Bill 5244 – Needed Support For Nuclear Power

Jim Conca

The Washington State Senate Environment, Energy & Technology Committee drafted a new bill, SB 5244, encouraging the production of advanced nuclear reactors, small modular reactors, and components through the Invest in Washington Act. A very necessary thing to do.

Washington State’s Approaching Energy Crisis – Good Intentions Gone Wrong?

Jim Conca

WA State has trouble on the horizon – with its electrical grid, as in not being reliable, and as in risk of rolling blackouts. The trouble stems from decarbonizing. Getting rid of coal is the low-hanging fruit, but just getting rid of it without a real plan to replace it can do more harm than good.

Energy 267

The International Energy Agency’s Bizarre Roadmap For Global Decarbonization

Jim Conca

The International Energy Agency published a roadmap for decarbonizing the global energy sector by 2050. Their requirements call for unlikely actions on the part of the world. They downplay nuclear and make unachievable goals for changes in energy use like the rate of electric vehicle penetration.

Energy 244

Blackouts And Megadroughts – Decarbonization Without A Good Plan Just Makes Them Worse

Jim Conca

The western U.S. is facing the largest risks of blackouts and droughts in history. California was bad enough last year. Poorly-planned decarbonization will not help. SMRs and hydro would.

Heat, Wildfires And Power Grid Challenges – Even The Pacific Northwest Begins To Worry

Jim Conca

Heat waves are stressing the electrical grid in the Pacific Northwest, making regional system operators prepare for rolling blackouts. Fortunately, we have tools to cope, including hydro and nuclear power, and demand response where you just ask big users to please not use any power for a while.

America Steps Forward To Expand Nuclear Power

Jim Conca

DOE awarded TerraPower/GE Hitachi and X-energy an initial $80 million each to commercialize their advanced nuclear reactors, planning up to $3.2 billion. They also approved a $1.4 billion award to UAMPS for the development and construction of a 720 MWe NuScale small modular nuclear power plant.

U.S. Solar Needs A New Model – Lumio Answers From Silicon Slopes

Jim Conca

Rooftop solar’s success depends on its business model as much as solar cells. A new company, Lumio seeks to provide a total Home Experience - your home creates power, manages its own energy, cleans its own water, filters its own air, monitors itself and calls professionals when the house needs them.

Energy 260

ANEEL: A Game Changing Nuclear Fuel

Jim Conca

A new nuclear fuel made from both uranium and thorium, especially when used in CANDU/PHWRs, can address several issues with nuclear power – proliferation, waste and cost. Plus it’s made-in-America makes it a prime candidate for export to emerging markets.

What Would Nuclear Batteries Do For Us?

Jim Conca

Centralized power systems are inefficient and cumbersome in our new technological future. Like the old telephone system that gave way to autonomous locally-controlled hand-held devices, nuclear batteries can make the same change for power to small, mobile, safe, clean, and affordable markets.

China Has ‘First-Strike’ Capability To Melt U.S. Power Grid With Electromagnetic Pulse Weapon

Jim Conca

China now has a network of satellites, high-speed missiles, and super-EMP weapons that could melt down our electric grid, fry critical communications, and even takeout the ability of our aircraft carrier groups to respond.

Preliminary Data Suggests Low-Dose Radiation May Be Successful Treatment For Severe Covid-19

Jim Conca

Human medical trials have begun on severely ill COVID-19 patients using low-doses of radiation. The first results on a very small group at Emory University Hospital were published this week and the results were quite extraordinary.

Managers Of $40 Trillion Make Plans To Decarbonize The World

Jim Conca

The IIGCC is a European group of global pension funds and investment managers, totaling over 1,200 members in 16 countries, who control more than $40 trillion in assets (€33 trillion). They have drawn up a plan to cut carbon in their portfolios to net-zero and hope other investors will join them.

Carbon 389

Magical Thinking In America – Not Just About Nuclear

Jim Conca

Many of us are shocked at the number of people in America that believe in things that just aren’t real. That a third of Americans believe that extraterrestrials have visited or are visiting the Earth or that only a third absolutely do not believe in ghosts or in telepathy, is worrisome.

Do New Nuclear Reactor Designs Change The Nuclear Waste Issue?

Jim Conca

The form of nuclear waste makes a difference in repository performance since heat loading and density determine waste spacing and repository size. But nuclear waste takes up such a small volume that these should have little effect on the issue as a whole and we’ll only need a single repository.

Waste 268

Why Japan’s Response To Fukushima Radiation Failed, While Utah’s Response To Nuke Test Fallout Succeeded

Jim Conca

Japan used LNT-generated fear of radiation to force harmful actions on its people after Fukushima, while Utah took scientifically-based actions after numerous above-ground nuclear tests dropped three times the amount of radioactive materials as Fukushima on the people of Utah.

Engineering Solutions May Work Better On Coronavirus Than Social Ones

Jim Conca

Americans are not good at following rules. Better to engineer our society so contaminated air isn’t allowed to flow between people. Just like water-borne epidemics were stopped over the last hundred years by building clean water and sewer systems.

Communities Surrounding Closed Nuclear Power Plants Face Terrible Challenges Moving Forward

Jim Conca

The Nuclear Decommissioning Collaborative’s report on socioeconomic impacts of nuclear plant closures on host communities has some sobering thoughts. Big hurdles are a lack of a national plan and the lack of planning when it would do the most good. But it would be best not to close them at all.

Artificial Intelligence Platform Detects Power Grid Flaws And Wildfire Dangers Better And Faster Than Humans

Jim Conca

Powerlines and equipment problems have been the cause of most recent wildfires. But a new AI and machine vision technology can analyze millions of images of powerlines and towers to find dangerous faults and flaws to help utilities identify problem areas and repair them before a fire starts.

Debunking Fears Of Nuclear Waste At California’s San Onofre Reactor

Jim Conca

During a virtual meeting held by Southern California Edison's Community Engagement Panel, experts considered a number of Doomsday Scenarios that could threaten the nuclear waste stored at the shuttered San Onofre nuclear power plant. But things got weird with fear of things like short-range missiles.

Waste 386

What Will A Biden-Harris Administration Do For Nuclear Energy?

Jim Conca

Joe Biden has a $2 trillion climate plan that includes nuclear power, particularly development of small modular reactors. His VP choice, Kamala Harris, will likely endorse his plan, which is good if democrats want the plan to succeed at all. Just look at last week’s rolling blackouts in California.

Expert Recommendations On Nuclear Waste May Fall On Deaf Ears – Yet Again

Jim Conca

The Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board just put out six overarching recommendations for the DOE’s nuclear waste program. Hopefully they won’t be ignored like the last set from the Blue Ribbon Commission that were similar.

Waste 242

Feeding The Planet Isn’t Science Fiction - It’s Cultivated Meat

Jim Conca

Combine animal stem cells with nutrients, salts, pH buffers, and growth factor in science-fiction-like vats and you get actual meat without growing the whole animal. It’s called cultivated meat production and will probably meet the world’s meat requirements in a decade or so.

Energy 364

Nuclear Power Does Slow Climate Change

Jim Conca

Why are we trying to close nuclear plants that have been relicensed as safe for another 20 yrs? To save a penny to spend on renewables and say that helps climate change? As all climate scientists agree, prematurely closing nuclear plants is bad for the climate. And it doesn’t save any money at all

Nature Dying By A Thousand Cuts

Jim Conca

The wild places of the world are disappearing, and will continue to disappear, until they are no more. And it’s all about habitat – we keep taking it away from everything else. Energy /energy Business /business Energy /energy Innovation /innovation Green Tech /green-tech Business energy

Japan’s Expert Panel Agrees That Dumping Radioactive Water Into The Ocean Is Best

Jim Conca

An expert panel is recommending that the Japanese government allow Tokyo Electric Power Company to release radioactive water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear plants into the ocean. And that’s a good thing to do since a gallon of this water is as radioactive as a family-sized bag of potato chips

Climate Change Driving Forests To Smaller And Younger Trees

Jim Conca

A new study by scientists at PNNL shows that ongoing environmental changes are transforming forests worldwide, resulting in shorter and younger trees with broad impacts on global ecosystems. Stunted growth from rising temperatures more than offset any growth gains by increased CO2 fertilization.

Drones Can Reforest The Planet Faster Than Humans Can

Jim Conca

There is more than one reason that we need to reforest Planet Earth, even if you don’t care about climate change. But doing it by hand is too slow. So Flash Forest out of Canada developed drone technology and aerial mapping software, led by ecological science, to reforest areas at 100 times the pace.

Veterans Affairs Knows How To Distribute The COVID Vaccine

Jim Conca

As of 3/20, VHA has delivered over 3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been given to over 2 million veterans, VA employees, health care workers and support personnel, this out of about 9 million veterans enrolled in the VA health care programs and about 400,000 employees at the agency.

Health 253