Brazil shelves plans to build new nuclear plants

May 9, 2012
A general view of Brazil's sole nuclear power plant in Angra dos Reis, near Rio de Janiero, in 2005. Brazil said Wednesday it has shelved plans to build new nuclear power stations in the coming years in the wake of last year's Fukushima disaster in Japan.

Brazil said Wednesday it has shelved plans to build new nuclear power stations in the coming years in the wake of last year's Fukushima disaster in Japan.

The previous government led by former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva had planned to construct between four and eight new through 2030.

But the energy ministry's executive secretary, Marcio Zimmermann, was quoted as telling a forum Tuesday that there was no need for new for the next 10 years.

"The last plan, which runs through 2020, does not envisage any (new) nuclear power station because there is no need for it. Demand is met with hydro-electrical power and complementary energy sources such as wind, thermal and natural gas," Zimmermann said in remarks released by the ministry Wednesday.

"The 2021 plan, as far as I know, will not consider nuclear power stations either, " he added, although he did not rule out construction of such facilities in the longer term.

"After the (2011 ) accident in Japan, not just Brazil but the entire world stopped to analyze and assess," Mauricio Tomalsquim, president of the EPE energy research firm, told the same event.

Tomalsquim said that in the next 10 years, the hydro-electrical contribution to Brazil's energy mix will fall from the current 75 percent to 67 percent while that of -- wind, solar and biomass -- will rise from eight to 16 percent.

Brazil's sole , located in Angra dos Reis, a coastal town near Rio, has two pressurized water reactors in operation, with outputs respectively of 657 MWe (megawatt electrical) and 1350 MWe.

After a 24-year dispute, work resumed last June on a third reactor at that facility with a projected output of 1245 MWe. It is expected to be completed in 2015.

The Angras do Reis plant currently generates around three percent of Brazil's energy production, which relies overwhelmingly on hydroelectric installations.

, however, is outstripping supply, resulting in occasional blackouts across regions.

Greenpeace and other environmental lobby groups oppose broadening Brazil's nuclear program, arguing that there is potential for widespread ecological damage in case of an accident.

Brazil, Latin America's dominant power, and neighboring Argentina are the only South American countries operating civilian .

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1.6 / 5 (5) May 09, 2012
About time people got smart and realize that nuclear energy is NOT the 'clean' energy it was touted as. It still holds the world record for being the dirtiest way to boil water ever invented. Certain radioactive elements (such as plutonium-239) in spent fuel will remain hazardous to humans and other creatures for hundreds or thousands of years. Other radioisotopes remain hazardous for millions of years. Thus, these wastes must be shielded for centuries and isolated from the living environment for millennia. The world should have learned with Three Mile Island and Chernobyl... but, where there's a profit to be made...
5 / 5 (1) May 14, 2012
sorry, but that distinction belongs solely to coal. as a simple example, a single 1GWe coal plant requires a 100-car freight train of fuel delivered on average every 24 hours - that's a huge quantity of toxic elements getting spewed into the environment just from the fly ash... nevermind the CO2. oil and natural gas while having a lower toxic element profile, STILL have the CO2 and STILL require a similar amount of fuel burned per GW.

by comparison, a PWR type nuclear reactor of the same output only requires 5 tractor-trailer trucks of new fuel once every 18 MONTHS. also, no-one has died from TMI, and chernobyl was perhaps the worst possible example of a nuclear reactor design.

still want to spread lies about the waste profile?
1 / 5 (2) May 14, 2012
Nuclear is better than coal and oil.
We should use nuclear as a way to develop renewable power plants.
After that recycle old nuclear plants into a nuclear moon base and nuclear mining base in space.
1 / 5 (3) May 14, 2012
This is happening around the world because rossis ecat is about ready and investment markets are being protected. Maybe I am being serious and maybe I am not.

It would be a costly and destabilizing shame if an energy alternative were to hit the market within the next few years when new reactors were halfway built wouldnt it? This would be something to avoid wouldnt it as it would cause the loss of hundreds of billions of dollars or euros or riales or something... yes?
not rated yet May 14, 2012
in any case, it isn't the power source (nuclear decay) that is the real source of the waste... it is the highly inefficient utilization of the fuel due to its' form - that of manufactured solid fuel pellets inside a rod. the solid fuel state forces a situation where not only is fuel utilization exceedingly poor, but also requires extremely excessive reactivity in the core. a proper analogy would be to a solid fuel rocket, which is both relatively inefficient and potentially uncontrollable due to it's large amount of excess reactivity. liquid fueled rockets avoid the reactivity problem, and are substantially more efficient in their fuel use. similarly, liquid fuel (molten-salt) nuclear reactors enjoy similar advantages over their solid-fuel cousins.
1 / 5 (3) May 14, 2012
Here on earth we use caps at the beginning of sentences because it is polite and makes posts easier to read and is less neurotic-appearing.
not rated yet May 14, 2012
One word: thorium!

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