Nuclear

Foundation of US nuclear system showing cracks

WASHINGTON (AP) — The foundation of America's nuclear arsenal is fractured, and the government has no clear plan to repair it.

The cracks appear not just in the military forces equipped with nuclear weapons but also in the civilian bureaucracy that controls them, justifies their cost, plans their future and is responsible for explaining a defense policy that says nuclear weapons are at once essential and excessive.

UN report says Iran nuke probe stalled

VIENNA (AP) — The U.N. nuclear agency said Friday that its attempts to probe allegations that Tehran worked on nuclear weapons were deadlocked — a finding that all but rules out hopes of full nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran by the Nov. 24 target.

Iran agreed in February to work with the International Atomic Energy Agency, in what was seen as a test of Tehran's professed new willingness to reduce tensions over its nuclear program.

OK given to restart nuclear plant in Japan

TOKYO (AP) — A local governor in Japan gave final approval Friday to restart a nuclear power plant in southern Japan, the first to resume operations in the country under new safety rules imposed in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi meltdowns caused by an earthquake and tsunami.

Kagoshima Gov. Yuichiro Ito said restarting two reactors at the Sendai Nuclear Power Station would go ahead even though some local residents have concerns.

Republican victory seen as new hope for Yucca Mountain

Source: 
E&E

Lawmakers and energy policy experts say the new Republican majority in the Senate could give new life to the stalled Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository in Nevada, a project stalled by outgoing Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., E&E reports.

French police arrest 3 men with drone near nuke site

PARIS (AP) — Three men in their 20s have been arrested in possession of a drone near a French nuclear reactor, the first such arrests since a spate of mysterious drone overflights of reactors began in early October.

There have been at least 15 sightings of drones over nuclear reactors around France, raising security concerns in a country heavily dependent on atomic energy for electricity. The zone around nuclear plants is off limits.

Malfunction closes 2 Czech nuclear reactors

PRAGUE (AP) — An official says a damaged water pipe has forced the closure of two of the four nuclear reactors at a Czech power plant.

Petr Spilka, a spokesman for the Dukovany plant, says the decision poses no safety threat.

US, France cite concerns about Iran nuclear talks

PARIS (AP) — With time running out on the latest round of negotiations, France and the United States on Wednesday stepped up demands for Iran to prove that its nuclear program is peaceful — or risk scuttling the closest chance for a deal in years and losing a chance to ease crippling sanctions on Tehran's economy.

The entreaty to Tehran comes days before Secretary of State John Kerry is to meet with top diplomats to Iran and the European Union on how to break the years-long deadlock before a Nov. 24 deadline.

Nuclear operators in Pennsylvania to pay more

Source: 
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Pennsylvania will use the extra money generated by a $175,000 increase in the annual charge paid by nuclear operators to beef up its safety program, including replacing outdated equipment at the Department of Environmental Protection, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

Air Force fires 2 nuclear missile corps commanders

WASHINGTON (AP) — Adding to signs of distress in the nuclear force, the Air Force fired two commanders and disciplined a third in response to internal investigations of leadership lapses and misbehavior at two of its three intercontinental ballistic missile bases.

The most senior officer to be relieved was Col. Carl Jones, the No. 2 commander of the 90th Missile Wing at F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, in charge of 150 of the Air Force's 450 Minuteman 3 nuclear ICBMs. He was dismissed "for a loss of trust and confidence in his leadership abilities," and has been reassigned as a special assistant to the wing commander.

Russia boycotts nuclear summit planning meeting

VIENNA (AP) — Russia has failed to show up at a meeting planning the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit, U.S and European officials said Monday, in a potentially serious blow to efforts by President Barack Obama to cement his legacy as leaving the world safer from nuclear terrorism than when he took office.

The officials said it was not immediately clear whether Moscow intended to boycott the summit itself or was just temporarily showing displeasure over Washington's harsh condemnation of Moscow's role in Ukraine unrest and the U.S. lead in orchestrating Western sanctions and other punitive measures in response.

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