News 2014

Key, reports relating to:

  • C - Government consultation
  • CA - Capacity market
  • EMR - Electricity market reform.
  • FC - Our second formal complaint to the EC.
  • - Shale gas.
  • - The views of potential investors.
  • LA - Legal action
  • N - National commitment to 100% renewables.
  • PO - Public opinion.
  • - The potential of renewable sources of power and their cost.
  • - Actual or potential subsidies for nuclear power.
  • SFF - Actual or potential subsidies for fossil fuels.
  • SF - Safety issues.
  • T - The timing of investment decisions.
  • TR - Transmission.


31 100% renewables target could save major economies $500bn+ a year (RE New Economy).

26 UK and Norway to build world's longest undersea energy interconnector (The Guardian).

22 Solar sails set course for a new journey into renewable energy (The Guardian).

22 Costa Rica goes 75 days powering itself using only renewable energy (The Independent).

17 Severn Trent pumps £190m into renewable energy future (Edie).

17 Longannet: Barge plan alternative put forward (BBC News). Scotland's back-up energy supply could be provided by three to 10 gas-fuelled power stations on coastal barges.

13 Wylfa protestors mark four years since Fukushima (News North Wales).

11 Mark Leftly: The shambles surrounding Sellafield clean-up continues (The Independent).

10 LA Luxembourg confirms opposition to Hinkley Point nuclear power plant deal (Power Engineering International). Monique Clement, Private Secretary at Luxembourg’s Department of the Environment told Power Engineering International, “Yes we are going to follow Austria. That’s the decision of the Luxembourg government.”

10 Electric cars could cut oil imports 40% by 2030, says study (The Guardian).

7 Wylfa B: Why stories from Fukushima are a warning for Anglesey (Daily Post).

7 Geothermal energy plan to heat Scots homes (The Scotsman).

5 Germany says using tax money for nuclear power 'out of the question' (Reuters).

5 Greens to refer back Hinkley decision to the EU Commission (Molly Scott Cato).

5 Greenpeace Energy to launch legal challenge to UK nuclear subsidies (The Ecologist).

4 Sellafield cleanup costs rise by £5bn in year, says watchdog (The Guardian).

4 CA MPs slam 'capacity market' scheme for raising energy costs (The Guardian).

4 UK joins Romanian push for new EU nuclear aid package (The Guardian).

4 LA Hinkley C nuclear power station faces legal challenge (BBC News); Soenke Tangermann, managing director of Greenpeace Energy, said the "highly subsidised" electricity produced by the plant would "noticeably distort European competitiveness." ... Greenpeace Energy is also calling on the German government to take action against what it calls "the unfair state aid approval." ... The law firm Becker and Buettner has been instructed to prepare the application for an annulment of the Commision's decision, which will then be put before the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg. See also Atomsubventionen: Britisches AKW könnte deutschen Ökostrom verteuern (Spiegel Online). Greenpeace Energy plan to take legal action over subsidies for Hinkley Point C.

3 Conference to dismantle case for nuclear (Molly Scott Cato).


25 Forget nuclear - Saharan sunshine for UK baseload power! (The Ecologist).

24 Solar at 2c/kWh – the cheapest source of electricity (RE New Economy).

24 Most French nuclear plants 'should be shut down' over drone threat (Newsweek). See also TERROR THREAT ALERT: UK's nuclear plants are at SERIOUS risk of terrorist drone strikes (Daily Express, 2015-02-23).

24 Ambitious EU blueprint for energy union to loosen Russian grip on gas (The Guardian).

24 Renewable energy poised to overtake nuclear in the UK (New Scientist).

23 Cracks appear in the nuclear industry (DW).

18 The myth of the dark side of Germany’s Energiewende (RE New Economy).

15 Finding ways to make offshore wind power economically viable (The Guardian).

11 National Rail land 'could produce 2.4GW of solar power' (Edie).

11 UK threatens to hit back at Austria over Hinkley Point legal challenge (The Guardian). See also Diplomatic row with Austria over EDF nuclear power station escalates (The Independent, 2015-02-12).

10 UK spent 300 times more on fossil fuels than clean energy despite green pledge (The Guardian).

9 Why nuclear industry needs to be paid $500/MWh (RE New Economy).

7 Hinkley Point is stalled by costs fallout (The Times). The Chinese companies are refusing to invest unless the French government promises to bail out Areva, if necessary, and cover their share of any cost overruns.

5 False solution: Nuclear power is not 'low carbon' (The Ecologist, Keith Barnham).

4 Welsh Government set for 'historic' block on fracking amid health and climate fear (Wales Online).

4 Italy rules out solar subsidies as Germany adopts auctions to dole them out (RE New Economy).

3 Government betrays Britain's fuel poor (Association for the Conservation of Energy).

2 Why Obama should stop pushing nuclear energy on India (Washington Post).

28 UK Guarantees scheme for infrastructure (National Audit Office). "Based on the use of the Scheme to date and the expected take up until it closes, the illustrative extra cost through using guarantees as opposed to direct lending could be between £35 million and £120 million a year, with and without Hinkley Point C."

1 Bangor University signs Wylfa agreement (News North Wales).


31 Treasury to pull the plug on tax breaks for green community energy scheme (The Guardian). 

23 Mark Leftly: Nuclear clean-up has been a toxic waste of public money (The Independent). As Dr David Lowry, the independent nuclear research and policy consultant who has worked tirelessly to expose Sellafield’s many problems, puts it, this was “Panglossian” and shows that they “never let the facts get in the way of their rosy-eyed vision”.

21 LA Austria to launch lawsuit over Hinkley Point C nuclear subsidies (The Guardian). The Guardian understands that Luxembourg is very likely to support the case in the European court of justice, arguing that the UK’s loan guarantees – over a 35-year period – constitute illegal state aid. Another EU country may follow suit. ... No grounds for the commission’s volte-face have yet been published, but the Guardian has seen a draft of the EU decision from last October, suggesting that one key decider had been that Hinkley advanced an EU ‘common interest’ around security of supply. A commission investigation declared itself “unsure” whether the reactor would resolve the UK’s security of supply issues, and was unconvinced that ‘diversification’ of supplies, on its own, would justify the monies involved. “The commission however accepted that the decision was in line with the Euratom treaty,” the draft ruling says. The Euratom treaty obliges member states to facilitate investments in nuclear power and encourage ventures that lead to the technology’s development. ... “There has been a high-level decision by our chancellor and vice chancellor to challenge the EU decision on Hinkley within two months of its publication in the EU’s official journal,” Andreas Molin, the director of Austria’s environment ministry told the Guardian. The journal’s publication is expected in the next fortnight." See also UK nuclear ambitions dealt fatal blow by Austrian legal challenge, say Greens (The Guardian, 2015-01-22).

21 EDF’s chaotic approach of French EPR reactor safety (le Journal de l'Energie).

20 Coal casts cloud over Germany’s energy revolution (Climate News Network).

17 Glasgow Uni discovery set to solve energy crisis (The Scotsman).

17 Why Sellafield costs us all a bomb (The Telegraph).

16 Wind power 'adds resilience to UK energy market' (BBC News).

15 Anglesey overhead pylons cannot be stopped says Welsh Government (Daily Post).

15 Questions about UK scrutiny of Chinese nuclear tie-up (BBC News).

15 S IoS Investigation: Officials plotted Sellafield cover-up (The Independent). Although the contract is worth some £22bn, the consortium told ministers that it would walk away from the deal unless it was fully indemnified against the costs of cleaning up an accident at what is one of the world's most hazardous nuclear sites. ... The documents have come to light only as a result of persistent pressure from Dr David Lowry, an independent environmental policy and research consultant, who is a member of Nuclear Waste Advisory Associates.

14 A new power station in Sizewell will be needed - but costs will have to come down to compete with other sources (Ipswich Star).

12 Expert Group on costs of nuclear accidents, liability issues and their impact on electricity costs (EG-COSTNA) (Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA)).

12 Solar at grid parity in most of world by 2017 (RE New Economy).

7 WMN Letters: Flood risks rule out nuclear reactor sites (Western Morning News).

5 Old coal and gas plants won largest share of capacity market, final results confirm (Carbon Brief).

5 Scots energy could be fully renewable by 2030, says charity report (STV).

4 Nuclear power is the greenest option, say top scientists (The Independent).

2 CA The first ever Capacity Market auction official results have been released today (GOV.UK, DECC press release).