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Utopia Talk / Politics / Energiwende
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 06:52:42
AKA how Germany wasted 600 million Euro to go from 10% renewable to slightles leas than 50%.

Do you understand how many nuclear power plants you get for 600 million Euros? The finish SUPER EXPENSIVE plant costed around 6 billion. That is a 100 Olkiluotos, assuming zero efficiency gains building and producing the same thing over and over.

Thanks environmentalists!
Rugian
Member
Tue Nov 22 08:19:26
600 million?
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 08:26:31
Ops. BILLIONS!
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 08:29:31
The true number for the alternative cost in the form of reactors is likely closer to 200.
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 09:25:31
While I think Germany view on nuclear short sighted, I suspect that you are not comparing like with like on price here.

e.g. the price of the Hinkley C EPR is closer to 25-30 billion lifetime cost per reactor (And the Finland plant is way more than 6bn now in just build costs).

The German splurge into renewables (along with others) have pushed down the price of renewables to the point where the lifetime fully amortised cost of the power is much cheaper than nuclear.

The way EPRs are engineered I'm not sure the reverse would have been true: too long, slow to build and big.

We need SMRs.
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 09:28:19
Hmm. Actually the Hinkley C construction costs are over 20bn alone but that is for two cores.

The finish plant (1 core) came in at c. 8bn Euros - I suppose inflation is the rest.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 09:45:24
"I suspect that you are not comparing like with like on price here."

It would be better if you knew and could show that this is the case, nothing I have read indicated that the operating cost for the stuff that has operating costs is in the 600 billion. The entire policy plan isn't just building wind and solar, for instance the cost for decommissioning their nuclear plats is in that figure. But it is good enough illustrate the magnitude of alternative cost. What I am getting at is that it costs money to reduce CO2 emission. And then it is a simple game of how much CO2 you can reduce for every Euro/dollar spent.

This is terrible value for money.
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 10:43:45
Nim:

You are doing the comparison.

So it sounds from what you are saying you are comparing a 600bn cost of the energiewende that includes capex and opex with the circa 6bn (actually over 8bn after overuns) capex cost for the finish nuclear power station?

"for instance the cost for decommissioning their nuclear plats is in that figure"

That though, is going to be huge.

So put it this way, 600bn would get you maybe around 60ish EPRs (if Europe could actually build 60ish over 30 years) - but it would not fuel them or operate them or decommission them at the end of their life.

Better to look at levelised cost of electricity.

Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 10:50:28
Or how much co2 you reduced.


Point is I suspect that to get the same amount of energy or avoided co 2 from nuclear, it's probably not such a slam dunk case. Particularly as a chuck of the costs of energiewende costs are effectively paying high marginal costs at the beginning to pay for supply chain set up (if not directly then in the price of generators) ; and at a certain point pretty quickly (if you were trying to build lots of nuclear plants) you are going to find the marginal cost of nuclear reactors would go up hugely because of the increased capacity the supply chain needs.

Huge new forges for building more pressure vessels in parallel, probably something similar on fuel and fuel assembly etc.

From a co2 reduction perspective, we've missed the boat a bit on nuclear. At least on PWR tech.

Obviously we should max out what we can from that industry, but I think a mix of renewables is likely to allow much faster and cheaper decarbonisation than trying to scale up PWR reactors.

SMRs might work.

Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 10:51:48
Basically, we need a time machine to go back to the early 90s and hit everyone over the head for how they fucked the nuclear industry
habebe
Member
Tue Nov 22 11:03:26
Im glad to see Nuclear is atleast getting looked at more now, silver lining.

It also makes no sense to consider it renewable. Its the most stable, safest renewable there is.

The sun will die off before we run out of nuclear fuel, especially with new tech like salt thorium etc
Sam Adams
Member
Tue Nov 22 11:21:31
"to the point where the lifetime fully amortised cost of the power is much cheaper than nuclear."

Lol no.

If germany had invested that same money in nukes it would be much cheaper AND actually reliable.
habebe
Member
Tue Nov 22 11:24:29
And it wouldn't be getting gouged on energy costs now.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 12:02:47
Seb
"You are doing the comparison."

Brilliant observation, indeed I made a comparison to which you commented "I suspect something something", already forgotten what it was, but was that it or is there something more?
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 12:47:43
Nim:

The numbers looked off - 600bn looked to high for capex cost - and you confirmed it.

Sam:

On-shore wind is cheapest at the moment.

I don't think whatever the capex portion of the 600bn was was spent on EPRs or whatever, they would not really have significantly pushed down unit costs, and they'd have not much power on grid now.

If it had invested whatever the capex was of that 600bn in nuclear, they'd probably

Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 13:02:14
Actually I didn't, I said nothing I have read indicated that operatings costs are included in 600 billion figure for the transition, which means it is more or less directly comparable to the 6 billion for Olkiluoto 3. Caveat here is that 6 billion does not include the costs that Areva had to take for the mess. And it was quite messy important to note, with those costs it would run the total closer to 12 billion. But then again if you kept building the same design, you would definitely make them much cheaper over time.
murder
Member
Tue Nov 22 13:46:00

"If germany had invested that same money in nukes it would be much cheaper AND actually reliable."

And they'd have dirty bombs all over the place just waiting to be set off.

Sam Adams
Member
Tue Nov 22 14:45:03
"On-shore wind is cheapest at the moment."

Only until about 25% of your grid is wind. Then costs spiral as you need to work exponentially harder to integrate such erratic assets.

Things are much much easier if the throttle is in your control.

A mostly nuclear grid is cheaper than a mostly wind_solar one.
Sam Adams
Member
Tue Nov 22 14:48:31
"And they'd have dirty bombs all over the place just waiting to be set off."

The expected loss of territory to nuclear accident is much smaller than the territory needed to make an equivalent ammount of electricity with solar panels.
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 15:10:16
Nim:

" nothing I have read indicated that the operating cost for the stuff that has operating costs is in the 600 billion."

I misread that, but decommissioning is opex for example.

I don't know what source you are using for your 600bn, but generally when I have read around these figures they are quotes as the cost of the policy which in its methodology would be capturing opex.

e.g. http://ene...cles/10.1186/s13705-017-0141-0

" But then again if you kept building the same design, you would definitely make them much cheaper over time."

That's not actually a given - subsequent negotiations for future EPRs have been (even accounting for inflation etc.) more expensive.

The problem with EPRs is they are too damned big and they are limited by a few really large components where there is a severe supply bottleneck and no easy / economical way to remove that bottleneck (particularly the enormous pressure vessel).

SMRs - that is what we need.

Sam:

"Only until about 25% of your grid is wind. Then costs spiral as you need to work exponentially harder to integrate such erratic assets."

They've already sunk that cost as part of the whole "try to minimise dependency on Russia*" over the last decade and a half. The European electricity grid is pretty robust for fluctuations. There was a huge programme c. 2005-2020 to boost interlinks and get the pan European grid able to shunt energy back and forth rather than mostly in one direction.

"A mostly nuclear grid is cheaper than a mostly wind_solar one."

Possibly if you started in the 1990s. Starting from where we are now, with HPWR technology that the EPR or Westinghouse designs are based on, probably not. The degree to which the nuclear industry has run itself into a corner is just not funny.

If you want to decarbonise fast, HWPR technology isn't going to do it, and is going to cost a fortune to scale and won't do so in time. Small modular reactors look like they can scale much faster, but it's not going to be cheap initially. That said, yes if you have a multi decade commitment and planned energy sector looking to target a ramp up to 70% baseload I think that would work well. The problems is getting political will to do that kind of thing. It would require (in the EU) the EC to fundamentally change its attitude towards competition and state intervention in the sector.

*They did not do enough, but upgrading the grid was a smart move and is part of the reason they were able to so easily hook Ukraine in.

murder:
Not likely. Really hard to get a lot of contamination from gen 3/4 reactors even if you fly planes into them.

Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Nov 22 16:51:14
"but decommissioning is opex for example."

The cost for decommissioning functioning paid for nuclear power is a direct consequence of the program and highly relevant when comparing Energiewende to a hypothetical all in on nuclear power scenario. But just to give some perspective, feed-in tariff subsidy costs for renewables alone is around 600 billion.

"I don't know what source you are using for your
600bn"

It in german and some part of the PDF are not copy friendly. Anyway the fun starts here:

3.2 Kosten für die untersuchten Szenarien

It compares projected costs given different CO2 goals, the reference case of doing nothing at all, including making new investments. The fossil fuel costs are irrelevant for the figures I calculated, but the tragicomedy is that they actually calculated 3 different scenarios where fuel costs rise year by year 1, 2 or 3%... didn't age that well :P

http://www...s-kostet-die-energiewende.html

I took the -90% CO2 target in the paper. They are accumulated costs from 2015 to 2050 capex 53 b/y, opex (Investitionen) 30 b/y. The program started in 2010. In 12 years you get 646b capex and 357b opex.

"SMRs - that is what we need."

The reason I chose Olkiluoto 3 is that it is most recent project and highly publicized example (for different reasons) of a reactor built in a western country. As long as atoms are being split in some kind of building I am happy.
Seb
Member
Tue Nov 22 16:56:47
Not convinced by the argument on decommissioning: surely it's just cost brought forward (the plants were going to be decommissioned at some point).
Pillz
Member
Tue Nov 22 21:18:04
I'm just curious why Seb hates birds?
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Wed Nov 23 03:10:42
Seb
Decommissioning costs are paid by the owners/operators, at the end of the technical lifespan. If for whatever reason the state decides to decommision earlier by decree the state is obligated to foot the bill. This is how it works in Sweden as well and it was sidestepped by simply creating a more hostile market environment for nuclear and forcing a market informed decision based on feasibility by Vattenfall.

Nobody would have entertained building nuclear power plants under banana republic rules where the state can force you to retire the plants early and also pay for it as well.
Seb
Member
Wed Nov 23 05:43:48
Nim:

This is an economic rather than fiscal study though right?

I.e. we trying to say "the energiewende cost the taxpayer X" (fiscal) or "the energiewenfe cost the German economy X" (economic).

I think the latter is the right question to ask.

In the UK under the old regime decommissioning is picked up by the state but theres some kind of issuance scheme as I recall. A weird cludge due to the plants being built by the state and operated by the state and then privatised. I think it's different for new build. I don't know the details for Germany.

But let's say it's like Sweden: the effect of the phase out policy is to nationalise the costs (shifts it from shareholder to govt), bring costs forward, but only generates new economic costs through the lost electricity supply driving up prices and the capital costs of the replacement capacity being brought forward into the period the study covers.

It is obvious that early retirement of the nuclear plants that could have been extended was dumb and hugely costly - but the rest of the policy: feed in tariffs for renewables Vs building new nuclear plants - that to me is less clear.

You also need to look at the study period. One of the great benefits of the German feed in tariffs is that it hugely acetylated the learning curve for renewables and contributed greatly to the plummeting capacity cost for wind and solar. And that's a global benefit, some of which was captured by the German economy by inserting itself into the value chain for future renewable orders globally. Granted it is not quite as successful as they hoped and China has captured a good chunk of the value chain. Oh well.

And I don't think that would have been true if they had gone after new nuclear build: the industry they had doesn't scale well. Likely they would have delivered less capacity to grid and not have generated much cost reduction just because the units are so large you only get a few cycles of learning over the same period.

The French and British had a better basis for pursuing SMRs based on their military submarine reactor industry (which Germany does not have and would need to build from scratch).

But yeah, you will hear no disagreement from me that the nuclear phase out was stupid.

And if you net that out (energiewende plus LEP for existing nuclear) then what does the policy look like?

Seb
Member
Wed Nov 23 05:47:20
Re looking at the time period - if you studied the French nuclear programme over the first decade, or would probably look very costly as you capture a lot of capex, and the energy is priced with a conservative assumption of capital lifetime.

Over five decades, once the plant capex is paid off but the plant is still running, much much better.

The intent of the feed in tariffs is equivalent - an initial injection of cash to bootstrap the industry to scale rapidly.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 24 01:15:45
”This is an economic rather than fiscal study though right?”

To caveat this, to get actual figures in full color so to speak on this is difficult, but good enough picture to get a sense of alternativ costs.

To answer the question, I don’t know, but it does not matter for my napkin comparison, money is money and someone has to pay it. The obvious first question is still, what else can you get for that money? A lot of nuclear power. I think the point is lost in the weeds here, 600 billion will get you far more fossil free electricity than what Germany has gotten from renewables (and needs) and massively reduced CO2 from their electricity production. Even with 60 reactors, I would debate that, but even then it would have produced better results.

“but the rest of the policy: feed in tariffs for renewables Vs building new nuclear plants - that to me is less clear. “

I mentioned it because as you see in the figures the total cost of the program is projected to 5-6 trillions, while we are mincing how much if any opex is in the capex. Presumably zero since they bothered to seperate them.

From another study that referenced this german one:

“A closer look at the costs of the German energy transition, however, reveals that around 75% of them are due to two particularities of the Energiewende that do not hold true for other energy transitions: the politically enforced nuclear phase-out and the fact that Germany massively expanded renewable energies at a time when they were still very expensive.”

Still unclear how much of that is nuclear and how much the scaling of renewables. Have you found out from the link?

There is a parallel question. While I am technologically agnostic there are requirements, it needs to be safe, reliable, cheap and clean. My conclusion is that renewables are of marginal use for most countries. Once you factor in their obscene material use, land use, toxic non-recyclable waste (just not as toxic as nuclear which is the only major benefit), lack of flexibility where to build them and weather dependency, it is very anti-climactic.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 24 01:24:09
Here is what I suspect, that when the cost of wind is cited, two things have not been included, availability (for wind 50% on a yearly basis, nuclear 90%) and grid expenses which are massive for renewables since almost all our grids were built for large turbines, not small.
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 03:23:11
Nim:

"money is money and someone has to pay it."

Yeah, but a figure that says "It will cost the taxpayer 600bn" vs the same electricity production and decommissioning costs in a "do nothing" scenario was 400bn, then the actual cost of the policy in economic terms - the actual money - is 200bn, and the 600bn figure is mostly about who pays for what.

"The obvious first question is still, what else can you get for that money? A lot of nuclear power"

Well, that's what I'm saying for a number of reasons, I think probably not a lot of nuclear simply because at a certain point it doesn't matter how much more money you have, there isn't the capacity to build it in the time frame.

"the politically enforced nuclear phase-out and the fact that Germany massively expanded renewable energies at a time when they were still very expensive."

Yeah - so the first part is a no brainer - but I would like to understand if this phasing out cost is moving costs from private to the public sector accounts (which in economic terms is a wash) vs. the actual new economic costs of early phasing out of useful capital and attendant decrease in energy suply.
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 03:32:30
Sorry, hit enter to early.

The fact that Germany bought renewables when they were expensive - to me that feels very much UK HMT mindset: understanding the price of everything and value of nothing.

The point of doing that was two fold: establish a dominant German position in the supply chain for renewables by providing the demand to pump prime the industry; and specifically to create the demand that would allow learning curves to drop the marginal price of renewable generators.

So yes it cost more than other transitions, but that is because it was in some ways one of the prime movers that enabled other countries transitions to jump on the bandwagon, and also generated spill over benefits to the wider economy.

If you were going to assess the policy in neutral terms, it would seem sensible to assess it against the full range of intended benefits.

"Once you factor in their obscene material use, land use, toxic non-recyclable waste (just not as toxic as nuclear which is the only major benefit), lack of flexibility where to build them and weather dependency, it is very anti-climactic."

Yeah, but I think you may be looking at it too much from a per-unit KWH perspective.

If you could go to a company and buy EPRs in whatever amount needed, it would probably be a good deal.

The problem is you can't - the ability to build EPRs is lumpy - a certain number* of units delivered every few years - and no real opportunity to scale that dramatically in the next decade.

From that perspective renewables look a lot better: you can actually get GWs of capacity onto the grid in a year or so, and the ability to ramp up production is not so constrained (and is cheaper than) the investment needed to scale up the number of nuclear plants.

From a total supply chain perspective, renewables are the only game in town for most countries if you want to stay under 2 degrees. You may then want to phase out renewables for more nuclear in the longer term though.



*And we don't even know this well due to the lack of experience in building them
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 03:44:57
I mean basically, I think the Energiewende has been a moderate success, despite the nuclear phase out.

It's increase renewables, decreased the carbon intensity of the German energy supply from 471 g/kwh in 2010 to 349 in 2021. There is a clear inflection point.

https://www.statista.com/statistics/1290224/carbon-intensity-power-sector-germany/

It did let Germany capture a commanding position in some parts of particularly the solar and wind supply chain; and along with Obama's green stimulus has helped push down the price of renewables globally and establish a supply chain that can meet a huge chunk of decarbonisation globally.

I don't think it is as simple as nuclear vs energiwenden.

Nuclear phase out bad, renewable feed in's were a success. I'm not sure new nuclear either using existing or new tech - would have yielded the same results on the same timescale.


Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 04:04:37
The mean construction time for a nuclear plant is about 7.5 years.

Olkiluoto to 13 years, Flamiville 11 years etc.

If all the feed in tariffs for green had gone into an order book for EPRs and they were all finalised and spade ready in 2010 - we might have had one or two power plants on grid by now - maybe 4 - but also potentially none. So lets say absolute realistic max 12GW but also potentially 0 given disruption from covid. Capacity factor for nuclear is 92% so lets say 11GW

Germany added 5.3 GW of solar in 2021 alone - granted the capacity factor is about 10-13% so in practice that is 500MW. Over the period from 2010 to 2021, they added I think on the order of 45Gw capacity so lets say 4.5GW.

Germany added 37Gw of wind over the same period, with an average capacity factor around 20% so lets say 7.4GW.

So across solar and wind, Germany ends up with more installed capacity even under the best projection.

I've left off biomass which is actually bigger than solar because I'm dubious about that for a number of reasons.

From a carbon budget perspective, renewable is far more attractive than you are making out.

You can install capacity and scale up the supply chain much faster and at lower risk - to a point at least.

The next revolution will be batteries - and that is one thing we can thank musk for.


Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 24 04:13:37
I didn’t say it will cost the taxpayer, I said germany has wasted. It could have been China’s money for all I care.

If EPRs can’t scale production we can do SMRs. The areal and resource intensity is still the same, massively in favor of nuclear.

They are obscenely resource intensive, especially once you factor in the different kind of grid they need, concrete, metals you name it eclipses that of nuclear by several orders of magnitude. Yes per TWh is a very valid metric here, since other environmental concearns related to resource extraction matter.

”I don't think it is as simple as nuclear vs energiwenden”

That is one way to look at it, we can also look at it from a grid perspective small vs large turbines.

Big and small turbines are not made for the same kind of grid. They operate on different frequencies and large turbines have a ”mass” that will help balance the grid and push electricity around, small turbines can’t, to name two. What happens is you just push the cost to the grid via additional infrastructure to make up for the stabilizing effects that large turbines have and maintenance of said expensive and complex grid.

Nuclear has more flexibility, in that you can sidestep the need for a grid all together. For instance, if you have heavy energy intensive industry, you could, potentially build an SMR right next to the industry.

You can only build renewables in certain places. Which brings me to land use, the massive areals that renewables take are ultimately competing with other alternative uses of that land, and they are massive compared to a reactor. And no one wants them near them same nimby problem as with reactors times 100, ironically I think they look cool.

Reliability/availability just sucks. And it sucks even more when several countries all neighboring each other in the same climate zone start relying on weather dependent electricity production.

The only genuinely positive thing is that the waste from renewables isn’t as toxic as nuclear waste, which I hear can be an even lesser issue with newer nuclear reactors.

The point is no matter how you twist an turn this looking at realiability, resource intensity, safety, nuclear (large turbines inluding SMRs) is better.

”2 degrees”

Nobody should care about the 2 degree target. Not gonna make it, don’t fret.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 24 04:18:23
”The mean construction time for a nuclear plant is about 7.5 years.

Olkiluoto to 13 years, Flamiville 11 years etc.”

You know as well as I that it doesn’t need to be like this and that neither Chin nor Korean reactors take this long. And as experience accumulated through these failures it will get cheaper and faster.

But if you want to play this game, Krieger flakk one of the largest sea based wind parks is still not online after 20 years :P
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 24 04:22:52
I did some numbers and posted them on UP not that long ago and atleast here in Sweden, once you factor in the time for all the study and approvals stages, it takes the same amount of time to build wind or nuclear. Most of it is in the approval stage pf course, for both. We can make them shorter sith policy for both and then you end up with the same material issues I have raised, flexibility, grid quality, space, resources and reliability/availability.
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 05:21:28
Nim:

"If EPRs can’t scale production we can do SMRs. The areal and resource intensity is still the same, massively in favor of nuclear."

1. SMRs are largely a "civil" version of subs nuclear propulsion units. Germany does not have that industry so cannot scale it.

2. And so far I don't think anyone has actually delivered one of these units - so it really isn't an option for Germany industrial or energy policy in 2010 is it.

"What happens is you just push the cost to the grid via additional infrastructure to make up for the stabilizing effects that large turbines have and maintenance of said expensive and complex grid."

That's true, and a chunk of that 600bn is as I understand it grid upgrades.

But again, I think the point I am making here is even if you threw 600bn Euros at the nuclear industry in 2010, I don't think you would get much more than 12GW capacity 11GWp online by 2021. And that's a maximum - it could be as low as 0. Sure, the unit cost of a power plant is say 10bn, but they take an average of 7.5 years to build and you are not going to be able to massively the increase the number that can be built in parallel.

In terms of integrated carbon savings over the period, you've got to go renewable.

"Nobody should care about the 2 degree target. Not gonna make it, don’t fret."

Oh, then just burn coal. Germany has loads of it, its cheap and easy to build power plants. Even if you care about particulates you can handle it.


"You know as well as I that it doesn’t need to be like this"

That mean 7.5 years is globally.

Here is a different paper:

http://ini...re/_Public/42/105/42105221.pdf

"and that neither Chin nor Korean reactors take this long."

China's take about 5-6 years too - but they have grown their workforce and maintain a steady drumbeat. If europe did the same we would be able to do this, but expecting to hit that metric from a cold start and where we are now and ignoring the current industry performance seems unrealistic to me.

The South Korean 1000MW PWRs also take about 5-6 years to build. 1500MW PWRs take about 8-10, and their CANDU types took about 4-5 years.

Again though, they maintained a stable workforce and order book - so again, you need to accept that you have the industry you have have when the decision is made.


We should grow a nuclear industry, but the goal should be to slash carbon intensity as fast and as cheaply as possible - and for Europe nuclear isn't the way to do that in 2010 or now.

"And as experience accumulated through these failures it will get cheaper and faster."

It will, but not in time to meet the policy objectives. So what are you going to do in the meantime?

"But if you want to play this game, Krieger flakk one of the largest sea based wind parks is still not online after 20 years :P"

Yeah, but that is not the same game really is it - I'm quoting global mean time for nuclear power plant construction (not even Europe which is more representative of what can be achieved in he first few units) - you are picking on one bad offshore programme.

The reality is any country can deliver far more installed capacity and net capacity in the same period than nuclear - and because it is much smaller units you get more carbon reduction in that period whereas you get none from nuclear until the plant goes on line.

"It takes the same amount of time to build wind or nuclear"
I am sceptical - nowhere in the world seems to be able to spend less than around 5 years to build a 1000GW PWR - and that is with a large well trained and experienced workforce.

And that is not even taking into account issues like there being only a few facilities in the world that can make the huge high grade pressure vessels and replicating that capability is extremely hard.
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 24 05:24:02
*1500 GW PWR
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Dec 06 17:32:37
"That's true, and a chunk of that 600bn is as I understand it grid upgrades."

Right, connection to the grind via medium voltage cables is 30-50% (on shore, off shore) of the entire cost of these projects. That entire cost was subsidized in Sweden and every country in Europe betting on wind is in one way or another subsidizing them heavily. It is not in any way shape or form carrying it's own costs.

"Oh, then just burn coal."

The point was specifically about the 2 degrees, not fossil fuels and global warming. It is most likely not a good idea to keep burning all this carbon, that not something I am debating.


"slash carbon intensity as fast and as cheaply as possible"

I disagree with the first, agree with the second. And I think this is the problem, we have this arbitrary and frankly poor metric "2 degrees" and everyone is starring blind at it. Renewables once viewed as a whole are unsuitable for most countries. And I think you are not adressing the elephants in the room, because they are massive like that. Space and resource intensity. Coppar alone is projected to have a shortfall of 10 million tonnes by 2030, in fact there is already a deficit of copper by 500k tonnes. Renewables use several times more copper than traditional source, EVs as well. Copper isn't scarce, but it leaves these giant holes in the ground, as with all mining it has environmental impact and realistically we are probably not going to catch up, it would require massive new copper mines founded every month or so. Externalities that simply never make it into the calculation. And it just goes on since the resource usage is at least 10 times more than a nuclear power plant, nuclear fuel included.

Another regional matter that isn't going away is the high weather correlation in norther Europe. Have you considered the retarded roller coaster effect this has on electricity price? It blows everywhere and price plummets, the wind is still and prices go up.

So to summarize, we should waste space, resource and build bespoke electricity grids that have high up front costs and operational costs, so we can have an unreliable source of electricity. And I think the space aspect isn't appreciated, because while no human wants to live near a nuclear power plant, all kinds of animals, birds and plants do, without getting singed by solar mirrors or clubbed to death by blades.

Honestly I am tired of this should woulda coulda in the 90's, there is no day like to day to make sure we don't stand here in 2050 and say we should something in the 2020's. Which brings us back to the 2 degrees thing, nobody should care about 2 degrees, we should care about a stable long term sustainable retreat out of carbon and renewables simply are not going to do that for the long list of issues I have raised.

http://www...of-generating-electricity-2020

Here is the IEAs report. Renewables are not a clear winner. It varies quite a lot across time and place.

Really the only clear argument (which is imo long term perfectly meaningless) is that renewables can be quicker to build (once we do away with red tape). Which brings us back to the false sense of urgency embedded in the 2 degree target, the I want you to panic path. All the impasses lead back to this silly 2 degree target, which is purely a political KPI/stunt, something ordinary people can relate to. There are better metrics to track our impact on the climate.

"It will, but not in time to meet the policy objectives. So what are you going to do in the meantime?"

I have already addressed this, but the lynch pin in your argument "time" is unimportant and based on a crude metric with with an arbitrary threshold. What we should do is to keep build more nuclear reactors and observe the very dull process that we have mastered a million times where things become cheaper and produced faster as we accumulate knowledge and skill.

"I am sceptical - nowhere in the world seems to be able to spend less than around 5 years to build a 1000GW PWR - and that is with a large well trained and experienced workforce."

Well, because there is more to building these things that simply building them, most places in Europe have quite the bureaucracy and instances where ordinary people, cities, municipalities and environmental agencies can protest, object or veto these things. Even the Swedish navy has vetoed some of them, because they become obstacles for the navy.



It is obvious that the problems of renewable energy is plain old simple physics (resource/space intensity, weather dependence), while the problems of nuclear is actually relatively mundane industrialization and skill accumulation, things we know how to do and actually can do something about. On that note, the consensus is that all these first of a kind projects, plagued with cost and lead time issues have accumulated quite a lot of experience in the nuclear industry. So there is no time like now.

When you started talking about storage, you kinda lost the plot a little, when at the same time you are claiming nuclear would have scaling and supply chain issues. Come on man! Neither batteries or hydrogen production are anywhere near providing the world with sufficient storage and most likely never will be because resources. And you know these same resources (minerals and the storage) are used for other things, not just renewables. As a reference, last years entire battery production was enough to store electricity for all of Sweden for 2 days. We have 10 million people living here, so good luck with that.

And no one has explained to me what is sustainable with batteries. The reason I change my phone every 3-4 years is because the battery has lost so much capacity. Racking up quite a lot of waste... that will cost money and energy to recycle... if it can be recycled at all.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Tue Dec 06 17:52:25
Figure 3. Construction time of PWRs, *without the extreme cases*

"From these figures, it can be observed that the countries with nuclear technology built nuclear
power plants in their territory in less time than the world average, regardless of the rated
power of the plants, with the exception of USA. In many cases, high-power reactors could be
built in about 4 years. Japan, for example, had systematically built reactors in less than 4
years."

"The evaluations show that construction time of PWRs has been longer for countries that did
not hold the technology to build their own reactors, and depended on contracts with foreign
suppliers. Countries with standardized reactor designs (France, Japan and Russia) were able
to build plants in shorter times. The presence of a large number of designs and constructors in
some countries appears to have led to a great diversity of plants, precluded standardization,
and contributed to longer construction times."

The paper you linked. So realistically, if we do not assume complete and utter failure after failure and cooperate, it can take 4 years. Like I said, these are issues we can solve (we have actually already solved it as far as a blue print for how to work), unlike the physics of wind and sun.
jergul
large member
Wed Dec 07 11:52:15
Batteries? Pfft. Altitude will alway be the best form of large scale potential energy.
Seb
Member
Wed Dec 07 14:17:42
Nim:

"Right, connection to the grind via medium voltage cables is 30-50% (on shore, off shore) of the entire cost of these projects. That entire cost was subsidized in Sweden and every country in Europe betting on wind is in one way or another subsidizing them heavily. It is not in any way shape or form carrying it's own costs."

Same was true of nuclear - vast one off subsidies to establish the supply chain and technology. I'm not sure what your point is?

I'm saying that is potentially a very good investment.

RE two degrees, it's not really arbitrary - it was set on the basis that it took us well out of any climate that humanity has ever existed in. It's also a pretty good metric to aim for - precisely because it is a continuum of effects if you don't pick A number you have no focus to track against.

"And it just goes on since the resource usage is at least 10 times more than a nuclear power plant, nuclear fuel included."

But the other elephant in the room is that there is not a nuclear power supply chain. You are looking at the supply chain issues around wind, but ignoring the fact you would need a lot more uranium mines (which are pretty awful), and somehow to massively scale up the heavy industry specialist forges that can make pressure vessels etc.

There isn't a magic store where you can just go and buy nuclear power plants from without any constraints, just as there are no magic stores you can go and buy renewables from.

"Honestly I am tired of this should woulda coulda in the 90's, there is no day like to day to make sure we don't stand here in 2050 and say we should something in the 2020's."

Building a nuclear industry over time so we do not stand here in 2050 is a good idea.

However - if it means delaying decarbonisation for decades, that's a non-starter. We will not stand here in 2050 if that is the case, we will be in a world with extreme climate change locked in.

"we should care about a stable long term sustainable retreat out of carbon and renewables simply are not going to do that for the long list of issues I have raised."

Stable long term decarbonisation that targets a say 700 ppm doesn't help us at all.

If we can decarbonise faster with a heavy renewable mix and then let nuclear grow at a sustainable pace so we stop doing the boom/bust thing - that is the sensible way forward.

"There are better metrics to track our impact on the climate."

Name one.

This idea that it doesn't matter what level of CO2 and hence equilibrium level of warming we reach is just nonsense.

Sure, you can argue it should be 1.5, or 2, or 2.5 - 2 is actually on the high side based on the impact of the climate models. And missing 2 is not a reason to give up.

But this idea that somehow because 2 is somehow "arbitrary" because there isn't a cliff-edge or tipping point is something of a reach.



Seb
Member
Wed Dec 07 14:30:28
"Well, because there is more to building these things that simply building them, most places in Europe have quite the bureaucracy and instances where ordinary people, cities, municipalities and environmental agencies can protest, object or veto these things. Even the Swedish navy has vetoed some of them, because they become obstacles for the navy."

Yes, but there is a reason for that, and there are also planning hurdles for renewables.

In any case, often with these things permissions and bureaucracy goes in parallel with building them.

And like I said, nowhere in the world seems to build these things in 5 years.

"From these figures, it can be observed that the countries with nuclear technology built nuclear
power plants in their territory in less time than the world average, regardless of the rated
power of the plants, with the exception of USA. In many cases, high-power reactors could be
built in about 4 years. Japan, for example, had systematically built reactors in less than 4
years."

Yeah, boiling water reactors with shitty containment facilities that failed horribly.

Lets not have more of those please.

Not all nuclear plants are the same - the smaller older ones were faster to build.

BUT the quid pro-quo: they were more proliferation prone, less efficient, used up more space and resources and some of them had fairly significant design flaws and would not survive e.g. a plane flying into them.

The newer generation of PWRs fix a lot of those, but they consequently take longer to build.

So that's the trade off and why PWRs suck unless you can run standardised programmes for building them on the scale of a major economic block - which Europe can of course - and are prepared to build them on a cycle of a few plants every five years or so until you taper off to a nice equilibrium where you are retiring and building new plants at about the same rate.

Otherwise you have this massive problem of maintaining a supply chain.

Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Dec 08 07:30:58
"I'm not sure what your point is?"

That when people cite the costs of these things, they are not actually citing the actual costs to the grid customers. This line of questions is irrelevant since I posted the IEA report which shows a very high variability in the cost of renewables. But for the sake of argument I am willing to assume they are the same. It doesn't actually matter because renewables are so surprisingly terrible in every regard but construction speed and less toxic waste.

"uranium"

Wow. You are obviously not paying attention to what I am writting. When I write that renewables consume 10 times more resources INCLUDING FUEL than nuclear power plants, that IS adressing the difference in the size of these elephant.

"High pressure reactor" "nuclear suppply chain"

Again, not paying attention. These are problem we have already solved or know perfectly well how to solve, unlike the intermittency of sun and win that will require complex electrical grid and (lol) storage, the massive resource throughput of these energy resources. The problem is more fundamental than reactor design, so betting that the Japanese can't build other reactors design in 4 years, would be severaly underestimating Japanese industry. You would had a better argument in Japanese exceptionalism frankly.

"I'm saying that is potentially a very good investment."

Renewable are new technology and considering that there is actually no grid in the world to date that is built for them, they are a high risk investment. Nuclear isn't. When I write that the availability of wind is 50% that is a theoretical figure, because the real world figure is closer to 30%. Then you reduce that number by 4% each year (the effect loss of wind turbines) for 25 years wich is the technical lifespan. Great investment! Especially when you consider the increasing roller coaster price movement as more intermittency is connected to the grid. What a great source of energy, for every installed unit, you need an equal amount of reserve power, probably fossil fuels, since they unlike nuclear turbines can be turn on and off and regulated. This is exactly what Germany has been doing.

"Doesn't magically appear"

There is nothing magical about building supply chain or industrialization process, like I said it is pretty boring and has been done many times across many technical domains.

"Name one."

Radiative forcing.

"Sure, you can argue it should be 1.5, or 2, or 2.5 - 2 is actually on the high side based on the impact of the climate models."

Too many variables and claims here around impact to adress, but this is kinda important: We are NOT going to make 2 degrees (without mass death of people). Especially since rich low carbon output countries are wasting trillions of dollars on EV subsidies and decommissioning nuclear and building resource intensive energy sources to reduces their already low CO2 output. Those EV subsidies in Norway and trillions the Germans are wasting would have had far more impact in India or Africa. This is the tragic irony I guess that the countries wasting the most energy, have utterly failed to internalize the globalized nature of the problem. Instead they are wasting money building golden toilet bowls for themselves. But but we can do both at once! Anyone who says this is engaging in magical thinking completely detached from the limitations of reality around allocating capital, political/social and financial. This is basically the refugee crisis all over again, by the very same people nonetheless. Waste money doing less in Europe instead of getting a lot more impact in poorer countries.

"I'm not sure what your point is?"

That when people cite the costs of these things, they are not actually citing the actual costs to the grid customers. This line of questions is irrelevant since I posted the IEA report which shows a very high variability in the cost of renewables. But for the same of argument I am willing to assume they are the same. It doesn't actually matter because renewables are so surprisingly terrible in every regard but construction speed and less toxic waste.

"uranium"

Wow. You are obviously not paying attention to what I am writting. When I write that renewables consume 10 times more resources INCLUDING FUEL than nuclear power plants, that IS adressing the difference in the size of these elephant.

"High pressure reactor" "nuclear suppply chain"

Again, not paying attention. These are problem we have already solved or know perfectly well how to solve, unlike the intermittency of sun and win that will require complex electrical grid and (lol) storage, the massive resource throughput of these energy resources. The problem is more fundamental than reactor design, so betting that the Japanese can't build other reactors design in 4 years, would be severaly underestimating Japanese industry. You would had a better argument in Japanese exceptionalism frankly.

"I'm saying that is potentially a very good investment."

Renewables are new technology and considering that there is actually no grid in the world to date that is built for them, they are a high risk investment. Nuclear isn't. When I write that the availability of wind is 50% that is a theoretical figure, because the real world figure is closer to 30%. Then you reduce that number by 4% each year (the effect loss of wind turbines) for 25 years wich is the technical lifespan. Great investment! Especially when you consider the increasing roller coaster price movement as more intermittancy is connected to the grid. What a great source of energy, for every installed unit, you need an equal amount of reserve power, probably fossil fuels, since they unlike nuclear turbines can be turn on and off and regulated. This is exactly what Germany has been doing.

"Doesn't magically appear"

There is nothing magical about buillding supply chain or industrialization process, like I said it is pretty boring and has been done many times across many technical domains.

"if it means delaying decarbonisation"

You can do more by pouring that money into decarbonizing the third world AND build a nuclear industry. You are simply not appreciating the costs versus how little impact we are having.

"Name one."

Radiative forcing.

"Sure, you can argue it should be 1.5, or 2, or 2.5 - 2 is actually on the high side based on the impact of the climate models."

Too many variables and claims here around impact to adress, but this is kinda important: We are NOT going to make 2 degrees (without mass death of people). Especially since rich low carbon output countries are wasting trillions of dollars on EV subsidies and decommissioning nuclear and building resource intensive energy sources to reduces their already low CO2 output. Those EV subsidies in Norway and trillions the Germans are wasting would have had far more impact in India or Africa.

This is the tragic irony I guess that the countries wasting the most energy, have utterly failed to internalize the globalized nature of the problem. Instead they are wasting money building golden toilet bowls for themselves. But but we can do both at once! Anyone who says this is engaging in magical thinking completely detached from the limitations of reality around allocating capital, political/social and financial. This is basically the refugee crisis all over again, by the very same people nonetheless. Waste money doing less in Europe instead of getting a lot of impact in poorer countries.

Anyway you are not being serious, that is glaringly obvious when you start talking about Uranium mining when I have several times stated the resource throughput of wind is 10 times that of nuclear, for solar even higher. I only engaged in this, because I thought I could learn something, given your background, but you are just arguing for sake of it.


I will say it again the problems of renewables, apart from them not actually being renewable or sustainable given the massive amounts of resources and energy that they need to produce energy is physics. Not supply chain, not money but physics.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 08:58:07
Nim:

If the grid costs (like the investment to spin up nuclear supply chains) are now sunk, what's the logic for computing them in any decision for the next marginal unit of capacity to install?

LCOE of nuclear isn't that meaningful if it is mixing tech and generations simply because the maturity is so much lower than even wind due to the long lifetime. I.e. gen II and III plants still operating which are and were amazing investments (though we didn't know that until the first round of LEP tapped out) but the overall profitability of IV and V is far less clear and that's the decision you are making.

"INCLUDING FUEL than nuclear power plants, that IS adressing the difference in the size of these elephant."

Hmm, can you share the analysis? Scaling uranium production was normally considered to have pretty sell environmental impacts after a point.

"These are problem we have already solved or know perfectly well how to solve,"

Yes, and the solution is very very long lead time.

"unlike the intermittency of sun and win that will require complex electrical grid"

Which we have largely solved or know how to solve.

" The problem is more fundamental than reactor design, so betting that the Japanese can't build other reactors design in 4 years, would be severaly underestimating Japanese industry."

It absolutely would not. You are greatly simplifying the scale of the challenge.

"Nuclear isn't"

That's simply not true though. New reactors using new operating regime's with few completed units - there are large uncertainties in construction costs, operating costs and even things like operating lifespan. Not to mention electricity prices and interest rates.

You can point to the levelised costs that cover previous generation plants, but the reason that the price per mwh of new plants is precisely because of these risks getting priced in.

Hence the need for SMR - smaller, more predictable units of committed capital with a closer antecedent for operational performance and where you can build certainty and learning faster on construction costs.

"Radiative forcing"

That's a stupid measure. It's simply computable from co2 concentration, which in turn is simply linked to forecast global temp.

"But but we can do both at once!"

Well yes, but earlier you appeared to be arguing that we should delay decarbonisation to achieve a smooth path to nuclear scale up.

Sure, we should do more to look at prioritising decarbonisation elsewhere, but I suspect politics prefers more expensive decarbonisation at home where the money is recycled back into the economy or establishing a place in future supply chains.

"but you are just arguing for sake of it."

I'm really not - I'm genuinely interested if the throughput measure is as-is or what it would take to scale.

Basically as you know the whole as+is nuclear industry supply chain sits atop a pile of massive hidden (military) subsidies so looks from a total cost model much better than it is. Uranium production and enrichment is an example - it's relatively cheap to use and maintain existing capacity and sustain and grow that incrementally due to large sunk costs, but used to be reckoned to be hugely expensive to dramatically scale up e.g to 70% of EU,US,China etc. (hence the whole fad for thorium). Something may have changed since then though.

It's worth considering that.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 09:07:33
Broadly my strategy is:

Wind and renewables - you probably won't regret it. The grid upgrades are largely things we will need anyway as to switch to SMRs (you probably will not have 1-10GW in a fixed place, and electrification of transport is going to make demand less predictable), and in any case there's no alternative for fast decarbonisation.

A hi lo mix on nuclear - build as many plants as we can get out of existing supply chains but do not invest in trying to scale industry to increase the rate PWRs can be added. Too much risk concentration. Instead focus heavily on SMRs and subsidise the hell out of getting those established (they are just civilian versions of marine reactors - a lot of read across in the tech).




Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 09:11:56
I also think you are underrating batteries.

The price has crashed, there are new technologies under development. The cost of a days domestic electricity supply is about 5-10k and EVs provide a passive storage buffer to boot.

I know people in London who can be 80% off grid most of the year using solar and battery combos. That's pretty amazing.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Dec 08 09:28:05
"If the grid costs are now sunk"

These accumulated costs for the frankly abysmal amounts of wind and solar are ecclipsed by what is yet to come. We are no where near the grid required. So this is about stopping the blood letting, accept the sunk cost and stop wasting more.

"LCOE"

Whatever we look at, the most fundamental perhaps Energy return on energy invested, nuclear is the winner.

https://riverandmercantile.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Picture1_20220913.png

This is boring.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 09:41:54
Nim:

You are comparing a Gloucester Meteor with an F-35 and assuming that you can work out lifetime unit costs of the latter by looking at the former because they are both jet fighter planes.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Dec 08 10:35:31
Might I suggest instead of talking in analogies you produce studies and figures. Until then, thermodynamics is actually a thing and the EROI figures illustrate what I am talking about when I say that the problems of wind and solar is physics.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 12:05:57
Nim:

Do you need a study to tell you that building and maintaining a fleet of Gloucester meteors is an entirely different economic proposition than a fleet of F-35s?

You just need to look at the technology.

Gen 1/2 400MWe BWRs relation to 1.6GWe PWRs are more akin to a piston drive
spitfire Vs an F-35.

At the very least can we accept a statistic that merges then together as equivalent is likely not to be meaningful.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 12:10:08
If not I can only advise you to head over to Wikipedia and flip through some basic texts.

You said you were interested if there's anything in my expertise you might learn from. Well if there's one thing it's tha the fact that Japan's boiling water reactors and modern PWRs both get their energy from splitting the atom doesn't tell you that much about their economic performance any more than steam trains economic performance can tell you about a modern diesel train because they both get energy from breaking chemical bonds in fossilised plant matter.
Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Dec 08 13:17:00
No no. I mean Jerguls background would also be interesting or sam, Nhill anyone with a STEM background. Your ”expertise” as it turns out is creating analogies. Studies, papers, real world figures, robust things.

I am really not interested in what you and Jergul were doing the other day, ”speculating genuises” we call it in Swedish. As you saw, I can/will source even my napkin calculations. You have so far posted 1 link that didn’t even say what you wanted it to say. It was only an argument if we assume indefinite incompetence on the part of the nuclear industry.

I mean I am not going to read and write walls of text just to read you saying my comparisons of resource usage doesn’t adress ehmm resource usage. You are trolling, not serious.
Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 14:24:30
Well let's put it this way.

A BWR operates at pressures of around 1000psi Vs an EPR which operates at around 2250psi necessitating a very large, very strong high grade steel pressure vessel.

These are very expensive with only a few facilities with big enough forges able to produce such vessels, and defects in these (see flamville) discovered after the fact can screw the entire economics of the plant as they are so large they cannot be replaced, nor can they be fixed.

All of this is basic knowledge like how piston engines are much simpler than modern jet engines.

Rather than technical reports, try Wikipedia. Such things are not documented in technical reports as they are too basic.

I've pointed out that the breakdowns in the previous paper on nuclear build - all the boiling water plants were faster to build, the pwrs all c. 6-7 years. It is obvious that the designs are so different that they can't be compared. Nobody will have done a study to show that.

But there are papers on the economics and likely cost of gen iv and III+ reactors and the price per mwh - and they are all not that competitive with wind. I've shown them before and will happily show them again, but you are just going to keep citing these lcoe stats and demanding non existent technical reports pointing out the technology is different because a high school science student understands the difference.

So, is there a point?

Also worth noting that the bwrs were deeply deficient. Their primary containment failed to contain the core as designed and their secondary containment structure exploded.

Seb
Member
Thu Dec 08 15:12:02
"You have so far posted 1 link that didn’t even say what you wanted it to say"

Actually it says exactly what I said it says.

"The construction time in Germany, France and Russia was
around 80 months and in Japan, about 60 months."

So 5 years. Also note that the Japanese pm reactors are all at/ under 1200mwe (gen II early gen III) so again, not the ones currently on the market.

The paper suggests about 8 months per additional 100MWe so the estimate would be an additional 24 months for 1600 MWe designs that are on the market. Back to 7 years.

It comes down to the size and complexity of the pressure vessel and containment. Too much high grade specialist steel and concrete.

Basically to get 5 years or less you need to pick Japan during the 70s and 80s using technologies and supply chains we've abandoned.

You can try and recreate modernised versions of these but that's just creating new design and investment costs and will lead you down the same developmental path: a famine of orders in leading to incentives for bigger individual units.

Might as well focus on SMR technology and milking the existing supply chain.
Daemon
Member
Fri Dec 09 04:49:39
But we'll help you.

http://www...-alert-over-winter-power-cuts/

7. Dec. 2022

(...)
According to a report published this week by ENTSO-E, the European association for the cooperation of transmission system operators for electricity, some EU countries risk facing electricity supply difficulties this winter.

“The report shows higher adequacy risk compared to previous winters. The main system stress is identified in Ireland, France, Southern Sweden, Finland, Malta and Cyprus systems,” the report reads.
(...)
Seb
Member
Fri Dec 09 06:18:03
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economics_of_nuclear_power_plants#Levelized_cost_of_energy_estimates

Some of the technical reports cited within the article are a good starting point.

LCOE basis - which includes capacity factor (but not IIRC fundamental grid upgrades) puts onshore and offshore wind and solar below Nuclear.

https://www.lazard.com/perspective/levelized-cost-of-energy-levelized-cost-of-storage-and-levelized-cost-of-hydrogen/

Lazard sort of does show the breakdown here - slide two shows the range of current new build vs LCOE for fully depreciated.

I think the main takeaway should be: the current crop of GW plus scale PWRs have some high risk factors, a life fixed at 60 years vs 30 in the planning stage. Gen I and II reactors had life extensions that essentially doubled their lives and why you get these very low retrospective calculations for LCOE - but the technology is so different that assuming Gen III+ reactors will surprisingly turn out to have 120 yr lifespans is a reach.

Plus pretty much every programme to build these reactors has run into delays and problems (as you would expect, the problem is there are so few units being built because they each meet so much demand, and the supply chain bottlenecks are so tight, that you just don't get the rate of learning you did on previous generations).

You can solve this with an absolutely massive order book - but that's:
1. Putting all your eggs in one basket - if the design has problems you don't have a problem with a supplier, you have a problem with how the hell you are going to power the whole country.
2. You need to accept a much slower roll out and associated accumulated carbon and radiative forcing.

3. You store up problems for the future where you don't need new reactors for c. 60 to 120 years from the end of your roll out., and you need to build an entire new industrial supply chain from scratch. You want to be building them at a steady rate - so an even slower roll out. It's really hard to justify a "new" reactor in between because they come in GW jumps. It's easier to meet steadily growing demand with other forms of generation - especially if the supply chain, workforce and design is not ready to go. Which it won't be 20 years after the last build.

So all V. risky compared to a more heterogenous strategy unless you can get the consensus for a big nationalised, ongoing programme.
Seb
Member
Fri Dec 09 06:29:20
It's surprisingly hard to find LCOE analysis that breaks nuclear down by the type of nuclear reactor.

I suspect this is because that type of analysis particularly for nuclear is very sensitive to interest rates and the technologies are associated with generation.

But if you are guiding a policy decision on "what will it cost to build nuclear today" you should makes sure the LCOE's excludes plants that have been fully deprecated.

There is no guarantee future plants will end up running to double their forecast lives.
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