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Re: [cdn-nucl-l] National Post, Solomon, Why spend billions to store used fuel that won't kill anyone?
Agreed we need better PM domestically. But how come
the off shore CANDUs were done on time and within budget? I think
it has a lot to do with national will (through all ranks) and the
relative lack of intervenors off shore for those projects. And as
for Darlington, the cost overruns were primarily due to project delays
imposed by policy makers, intervenors, economic bad time, low electrical
growth rates, very high interest rates and the imposed policy of not
passing costs along to the consumer until the plant started up. It
was like building a nuclear plant with a credit card and not being
allowed to pay anything down on the principle!
At 11:10 AM 13/09/2011, Andrew Daley wrote:
This is very interesting stuff.
The way I see it, costs associated with LNT can be broken into three
1) Design costs- containment, high quality parts etc to prevent or
mitigate radiation accidents.
2) Operational Costs- as you listed ALARA, PJBS, ETC. Also ongoing design
changes and safety analysis
3) Decommissioning and fuel storage- lots of unknowns here.
Now the "high initial cost" of Nuclear is well documented as
compared to other sources. Despite this cost, it was deemed economic to
build the plants.
Operational costs are what balances this... so even if they could be
lowered, they are already low.
Finally, decommissioning and fuel costs are already included in
My gut feel is that you'd get a better bang for the buck in terms of
economic viability by focusing on other areas.
Two which immediately come to mind are political certainty and project
Taking Darlington as an example... original projection 7 billion, final
cost 14 billion.
Only a minority of this cost increase was equipment related or inherent
to nuclear. And that extra 7 bill could have bought a heck of a lot of
Moving forward, the whims of politics are likely to always be with
That leaves strong Project Management as the key to financial
Looking at recent industry project performance is a mixed bag at
We should be focused on this area which can save us literally billions
and where the regulatory and political implications are nothing but
The major challenge here is getting non project people ( read: normal
line managers) to understand what PM is really all about. In my
experience, we have created a good awareness of PM but this is only step
In other words, everyone is now tracking SPI and CPI... but most of the
time this is useless because the underlying schedule and cost estimates
were not prepared with any sort of fidelity (e.g. scheduling an activity
for 1 week because it "fits" when the activity physically takes
That is exactly the same as the "garbage in, garbage out"
paradigm in Computer Science and is one of the reasons why so many of our
projects have gone to garbage.
If we actually applied PM principles... all of them... and didn't fudge
our scheds and budgets... we could achieve some really excellent project
performance and cost savings to offset LNT!
On 2011-09-13 2:44 AM, "Rod Adams"