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2009 World Nuclear Industry Status Report: Extract

This Bulletin article is an extract from the longer and more detailed analysis prepared for the German Federal Ministry of Environment, Nature Conservation and Reactor Safety.  The extract focuses primarily on the industry trends and does not address the subsidy components of the original report.  Readers primarily interested in nuclear subsidies should refer to the full report.

Caught Out... The way forward for fishery subsidies (video)

Short documentary providing useful background on global fishery subsidies and efforts at reform. It looks at the problem of over-fishing and approaches to making fisheries more sustainable, in particular through the reform of fishery subsidies.  In this regard, the ongoing WTO negotiations aimed at improving and clarifying rules on fisheries subsidies are identified as a major opportunity.

Nuclear Power in France: Beyond the Myth

The general message is clear: in France nuclear power works, in 2007 providing 77% of the electricity in the country and 47% of all nuclear electricity in the EU. “The requests by countries that wish to profit from that clean and cheap source of energy are legitimate”, claims French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner. But does it really work that well and is it all that clean and cheap in France?

An assessment of the costs of the French nuclear PWR program 1970–2000

The paper reviews the history and the economics of the French PWR program, which is arguably the most successful nuclear-scale up experience in an industrialized country. Key to this success was a unique institutional framework that allowed for centralized decision making, a high degree of standardization, and regulatory stability, all epitomized by comparatively short reactor construction times.

All Risk, No Reward for Taxpayers and Ratepayers: The Economics of Subsidizing the 'Nuclear Renaissance' with LGs and CWIP

As the projected costs of nuclear reactor construction have escalated, demand forelectricity has declined as result of the recession, and the cost of alternatives has plummeted, the nuclear industry has recognized that new nuclear reactors are simply uneconomic and impossible to fund in the capital markets. Seeking to override the verdict of the marketplace, the industry’s lobbying arm has demanded massive increases in subsidies from taxpayers and ratepayers to underwrite the industry. It demands:

New Nuclear Generation: Ratings Pressure Increasing

Of note:  analysis contains a detailed summary of credit downgrades associated with the last waves of nuclear reactor construction.

While nuclear power remains a thorny political and policy issue today, the concept of building new facilities has gradually reawakened in recent years, offering a buffer against foreign energy dependence, unpredictable commodity prices, and heavily polluting fuel sources. As a result, several of the largest U.S. power companies in recent years have announced plans to pursue new nuclear generation.

State and federal subsidies to biofuels: magnitude and options for redirection

Hundreds of government subsidies have fuelled the growth of ethanol and biodiesel in the USA, worth half or more their retail price. Cumulative costs under some mandate proposals exceed $1 trillion by 2030. Even using favourable assumptions, reduced greenhouse gas emissions from biofuels are far more expensive than other options: more than $100/mt CO2e even for cellulosic ethanol and nearly $300/mt CO2e for corn-based fuel. Despite rising concerns, environmental screens in existing subsidy policies remain weak or non-existent.

Effects of Energy and Transportation Projects on Soybean Expansion in the Madeira River Basin

A number of energy and transportation projects have been proposed to promote the physical integration of Peru, Brazil and Bolivia's Amazon territories. The Madeira River Hydroelectric and Navigation Mega-project includes the construction of two hydroelectric power stations (HPS), Jirau and Santo Antônio, in Brazil, a third HPS between Abunã in Brazil and Guayaramerín in Bolivia, and probably a fourth at the Esperanza Falls on the Beni River in Bolivia.

Fuelling the Threat for Sustainable Fisheries in Europe

All European countries provide fuel subsidies to their fisheries sector in one form or another. Those subsidies consist mostly of fuel tax exemptions, but there are also some other state aid and support schemes that play a role in reducing fuel costs for the fishing industry. This report analyses fuel subsidies and the impact it has on fish stocks and the fisheries sector in the EU. It is well documented that by reducing operating costs and thus enhancing fishing effort, fuel subsidies are increasing the fishing pressure on the target species and related species (e.g.

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