tidbits #19

This time the news are:

  • Hinkley Point C is still Europe’s most controversial nuclear plant project. Last week the UK government under George Osborne struck a deal with the Chinese, where the Chinese pledge to finance 1/3 of Hinkley Point C. The total costs of HPC are supposed to be 34 billion euros. The Chinese are, of course, not interested in HPC per se. They want to further their own goals: exporting their own nuclear plants. They plan to build their own reactor,  Hualong, on the Bradwell site in UK, and it is becoming more and more evident that Osborne is cutting a deal: You invest in HPC, and I give you the green light for building a Chinese reactor at the Bradwell site in UK. 
    Overall it is still surprising that the UK government pushes for HPC, given that 1) it will need many years (expect at least 10) until completion; 2) nuclear power is not the cheapest way of producing power in the UK anymore: in effect, in may places in UK wind and solar comes at 2/3 of the strike price for HPC; who knows how cheap wind and solar energy will be in 10 years; 3) nuclear plants built with the same technology in France (i.e. with EDF, the company that is also supposed to build HPC) are several years behind schedule and already three times over budget; 4) and the technology of the EPR reactor that is supposed to be built in HPC is currently under scrutiny because of safety issues. Why bet on a Trojan Horse if the alternatives, like wind or solar, are open doors?

And some seminars/conference announcements (as usual you can also find them in my Environmental Economics Calender on the right):

  • This Friday I will present in the 4th Benelux Association for Energy Economics workshop, in Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium. You can find the programme here: BAEE Schedule.
  • Paris Environmental and Energy Economics Seminar, Maison des Sciences Economiques, Paris Sorbonne, November 5, 4.30PM to 6.30PM, Ujjayant Chakravorty (Tufts University) on “Who is Buying? Fuelwood Collection in Rural India”, followed by Hélène Ollivier (CNRS – PSE) on “Product mix, trade, and the environment: theory and evidence from Indian manufacturing”
  • Sustainable Economic and Financial Development seminar,  École Polytechnique Paris- Department of Economics, Tuesday, November, 10 from 3 to 4:30 pm, Eric Strobl (École Polytechnique) on  “The Inflationary Costs of Extreme Weather”
  • Conference on Sustainable Resource Use and Economic Dynamics  (SURED 2016), to be held in Banyuls-sur-Mer (France), 6th-9th June 2016. As Lucas Bretschger is now the president of EAERE he could not continue to organize the SURED conference in wonderful Ascona (Lago Maggiore) any more. The new organizers are Mireille Chiroleu-Assouline (Paris 1 and PSE), Katheline Schubert (Paris 1 and PSE) and Sjak Smulders (Tilburg University). More information: www.sured2016.fr.
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