Topics: Nuclear power, Sellafield, Three Mile Island accident Pages: 11 (3766 words) Published: April 24, 2013
ASSSESSMENT – Writing a Science Report
Due – Tuesday 12th February
Draft – Tuesday 5th February

Should the UK have more Nuclear power stations?
Task – to write a report –
Include the following
* Introduction – explain what your writing about
* What is Nuclear Power?
* Advantages
* Disadvantages
* Your opinion

* Simple
* Diagrams
* Paragraphs
* Spelling punctuation and grammar
* Full bibliography
* Max 2 sides of A4 Font 12.

Nuclear power generates around one sixth of the United Kingdom'selectricity, using 16 operational nuclear reactors at nine plants (14advanced gas-cooled reactors, one Magnox and one pressurised water reactor), as well as a nuclear reprocessing plant at Sellafield. The United Kingdom's first commercial nuclear power reactor began operating in 1956 and, at the peak in 1997, 26% of the nation's electricity was generated from nuclear power. Since then a number of reactors have closed and the share had declined to 19.3% by 2004 and approximately 16% by 2009. The remaining Magnox plant will close in 2014. The older AGR reactors have been life-extended, and further life-extensions across the AGR fleet are likely.[1][2] In October 2010 the British Government permitted private suppliers to construct up to eight new nuclear power plants.[3] However theScottish Government, with the backing of the Scottish Parliament, has stated that no new nuclear power stations will be constructed inScotland.[4][5] In March 2012, E.ON UK and RWE npower announced they would be pulling out of developing new nuclear power plants, placing the future of nuclear power in the UK in doubt.[6] Despite this,EDF Energy is still planning to build four new reactors at two sites, with public consultation completed and initial groundwork beginning on the first two reactors, sited at Hinkley Point in Somerset. [7] [8] Of the nine currently operating nuclear plants in the UK, EDF Energy operates eight with a combined capacity of almost 9,000 megawatts, while Wylfa power station is run by Magnox Ltd.[9] All nuclear installations in the UK are overseen by the Office for Nuclear Regulation.

HistorySizewell BThe history of nuclear energy economics in the UK is complex. The first Magnox reactors were not built for purely commercial purposes, and later reactors faced delays which inflated costs (culminating in Sizewell B taking seven years from start of construction to entering service, after a lengthy public enquiry). Costs have also been complicated by the lack of national strategy or policy for spent nuclear fuel, so that a mixed use of reprocessing and short-term storage have been employed, with little regard for long-term considerations (although a national repository has been proposed). There is a lack of consensus in the UK about the cost/benefit nature of nuclear energy, as well as ideological influence (for instance, those favoring 'energy security' generally arguing pro, while those worried about the 'environmental impact' against). Because of this, and a lack of a consistent energy policy in the UK since the mid-1990s, no new reactors have been built since Sizewell B in 1995. Costs have been a major influence to this (with Sizewell B having run at a cost of 6p/kWh for its first five years of operation[64]), while the long lead-time between proposal and operation (at ten years or more) has put off many investors, especially with long-term considerations such as energy market regulation and nuclear waste remaining unresolved.

[edit]Future power stations
See also: Economics of new nuclear power plants
It is current UK Government policy that the construction of any new nuclear power stations in the UK will be led and financed by the private sector.[65] This transfers the running and immediate concerns to the operator, while reducing (although not eliminating) government participation and long-term involvement/liability (nuclear waste, as involving government...
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