India's growing appetite for uranium
‘India is keen to shore up its uranium stockpile. Even as several state-owned firms identify mineral assets and are in the midst of floating separate ventures in foreign countries to buy out uranium reserves to feed the country's voracious appetite for power and to maintain energy security, the Asian major's civil nuclear plants are set to benefit from imports from friendly countries. Russia, which holds about a tenth of the world's uranium reserves, is aiming to be a major supplier to the Indian nuclear power industry. The two countries have decided to work on the creation of a joint venture for geological exploration and production of uranium. Currently, India produces only about 450 metric tonnes of uranium. Given the recent announcements of construction of new nuclear power plants, which is second only to China, India is keen to source regular supplies at low prices. The country's annual uranium requirement is expected to jump by an additional 1,500-2,000 tonnes. Analysts have said that India's nuclear market is set to grow to around $40 billion by 2020. But firm prices could play spoil the party.’

Dispute Over Nuclear Fuel in South Korea

‘SEOUL, South Korea — Overshadowed by the continuing tension over North Korea’s nuclear program, another nuclear dispute is emerging on the Korean Peninsula — this one between the United States and South Korea. South Korea, which has no oil reserves, derives 40 percent of its electricity from nuclear reactors and is running out of space to store the highly radioactive spent nuclear fuel. So the South Korean government wants to reprocess the used material — both to provide fuel for its next generation of fast-breeder reactors and to reduce its stored waste. But South Korea is prohibited from such activities under a 1974 agreement with the United States. The plutonium that results from reprocessing spent fuel can power nuclear reactors — which South Korea insists is its only goal — but can also be used to make atomic bombs, as North Korea has done. Washington wants to rein in the spread of reprocessing and enrichment as it grapples with North Korea and Iran over their nuclear programs. It retains some suspicions about South Korea, which briefly pursued nuclear weapons in the 1970s and experimented with reprocessing later. Allowing South Korea to reprocess or enrich the fuel, the United States fears, would set a precedent for other nations and give North Korea a pretext not to abandon its nuclear weapons program.’

China's CNNC Keen To Build Argentina Nuclear Power Plant

‘BUENOS AIRES (Dow Jones)--China National Nuclear Corp., or CNNC, has expressed interest in helping to build Argentina's fourth nuclear power plant, Argentina's Planning Ministry said Tuesday. Planning Minister Julio de Vido met with the head of CNNC, Mao Xiaming, to discuss the tender of construction contracts. They agreed that a Chinese delegation will travel to Argentina in August, while in September representatives from Argentina's National Atomic Energy Commission will visit China, the ministry said. De Vido is in China accompanying President Cristina Fernandez…’

Surry 2 nuclear-power plant off line to repair leak

‘A leak in a river-water pipe prompted Dominion Virginia Power to shut down its Surry 2 nuclear-power plant Sunday night. The leak was stopped and workers were repairing the pipe yesterday, a Dominion Virginia Power spokesman said. Because the leak in the pipe, which also supplies water to some safety equipment, could not be repaired in 24 hours, Surry 2's operators took the plant off line, the electric company said. "They've done what we expected them to do," said Roger Hannah of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in Atlanta. The 8-foot diameter metal pipe carries water from the James River to the plant's steam condenser. The condenser converts steam back into water after the steam turns the plant's power turbine. The leak did not affect the reactor's primary cooling system.'