Nuclear Power Pros & Cons

Topics: Nuclear power, Plutonium, Nuclear fission Pages: 7 (2181 words) Published: December 1, 2010
Requirement specifications for a new nuclear plant provide the basis for selecting the appropriate reactor and other machinery for the successful implementation of the project. There are a total of 14 nuclear power stations in operation in the UK and there are 6 which have gone under decommissioning in the past 15 years. Nuclear power plants supply at present 20% of UK’s total energy requirements. A further 8 nuclear power plants will be constructed in the UK in the next 10 years. This report will detail the specific requirements and choice of a nuclear power plant to be built at a selected site in UK. This report will explore legislative requirements, project management, operational safety and decommissioning and other features in plant selection. Legislation

National and international laws, treaties and conventions govern the requirements for nuclear power plants in any country. These laws and treaties are developed to address some of the following issues; radiology safety, safe construction, commissioning and operation, safeguards, handling nuclear material and protecting the environment, handling of nuclear emergencies and accidents and nuclear liability and coverage. The appropriateness of some of the requirement specification for a new nuclear plant, demands that there should be; a) Sufficient cooling water,

b) Emergency evacuation procedures,
c) Transport infrastructure is suitable i.e. access through the sea preferred than land. d) Storage of fissile material to be discrete,
e) Security measures are put in place to exclude public from trespassing. It is essential to appoint a legal team that will work hand in hand with relevant government bodies eg the NPIA, and participate in all deliberations and establish a comprehensive reference portfolio to reflect International safety requirements for the project. Site Selection.

Some of the guidelines on choosing a site are as follows, provided by the IAEA BULLETIN, (1996): * Integration into the electric grid system Geology, tectonic studies. * Hydrology (including ground water, floods and tsunamis) Cooling water availability, intake and discharge. * Demography and land use

* Meteorology and atmospheric dispersion (including wind patterns, tornados and hurricanes) * Nuclear safety and radiation protection aspects
* Access and emergency response roads.
* Air, land and sea transportation patterns, Legal aspects. * Public consultation.

Governmental agencies contribute to the Environmental Assessment (EA). The EA must demonstrate that all risks to the environment and to the public are mitigated to as low as reasonably achievable. This is an important criterion that satisfies the requirements of the national and international environmental frameworks and regulations. The site that I recommend for the construction of a new nuclear power plant is in Cumbria at Sellafield. Cumbria has supported nuclear power generation since Sellafield has already acquired an area of 262 hectares covered by the nuclear site licence. Nuclear power programmes have been supported by organisations including United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) and the Ministry of Defence (MoD). Processing of fuels removed from nuclear power stations; Mixed Oxide (MOX) fuel fabrication; and storage of nuclear materials and radioactive wastes was done at Sellafield (NDA, 2009) Generation ceased in 2003 (NDA, 2009). On the other hand political differences still emerge and Ireland has repeatedly called the closure of Sellafield nuclear power station for a long time (The Guardian, 2009). Nathan Argent, the head of Greenpeace's energy solutions unit, also hit out at the plans."Sellafield doesn't even have the right grid connections, so there's no way it could deliver electricity” (The guardian, 2009)....
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