Monday, December 31, 2012

Looking Forward and Looking Back

A Podcast Overview of 2012

Yesterday, I took part in an Atomic Show podcast on Nuclear Wrap Up, 2012.  The participants were
Rod Adams (the show organizer) and blogger at Atomic Insights
Gwyneth Cravens, author of Power to Save the World
William Davis of Atomic Power Review and ANS Nuclear Cafe
Ben Heard of Decarbonize SA, and author of Zero Carbon Options: Seeking an Economic Mix for an Environmental Outcome, calling in from Australia

We discussed the sweep of nuclear energy, including Jaczko's resignation, the new builds in the United States, Vermont Yankee winning in court, progress toward nuclear energy in Australia, and the election of the pro-nuclear party in Japan. The conversation was wide-ranging and fun.

The 137th Carnival of Nuclear Energy Bloggers is also up at Hiroshima Syndrome. Great nuclear blogposts, collected for your reading pleasure.

My Own Overview of 2012

My viewpoint tends to be very New England based, and heaven knows there was enough going on.
  • Vermont Yankee won its lawsuit in Federal Court, mostly on the basis that the State was trying to pre-empt the federal regulation of nuclear safety.
  • The two major Vermont utilities merged.  Green Mountain Power is owned by Gaz Metro of Quebec, and Green Mountain Power now owns Central Vermont Public Service.
  • The State of Vermont issued a rapidly-written Comprehensive Energy Plan. This plan says Vermont will be 90% renewable power for everything (including heating and transportation) by 2050.  
  • Vermont Yankee also needs a Certificate of Public Good from the Vermont Public Service Board, and the Public Service Board opened a new docket.  The old docket contained material about nuclear safety (a federally pre-empted subject).  Many people spoke in favor of Vermont Yankee at the two public hearings on the new docket.
There's more of course, but these were the main stories. I put up 220 blog posts in 2012, and they still don't cover everything. (I wrote most of the blog posts, but there were also many guest posts, especially of testimony at the PSB hearings.)

Not a major energy story, of course, but...

Howard Shaffer and I were awarded Presidents' Citations by the American Nuclear Society in June.  We are deeply grateful to the American Nuclear Society for this honor.

Looking Forward to 2013

Let's look at those four stories again
Looking Forward Personally

A week from today, I will begin leading my course Engineering Adventures with Nevil Shute. I didn't know this when I planned the course, but there's an international organization, the Nevil Shute society, and they plan to make videos of the course.  A woman from Boston will drive up to attend the course and make the videos.

(No pressure there, Meredith!)

Looking back at my own year...220 blog posts (plus op-eds and ANS blog posts) are just too many.  My New Year's resolution is to cut back some, especially since I have some paid writing lined up.  I have neglected my little company, Carnot Communications, but Carnot seems to be reviving itself without much effort on my part.  I am grateful.

I also plan to write some longer things such as white papers and ebooks. That's the plan, anyhow.  My commitment  is unwavering: to Vermont Yankee, nuclear energy, and a reasonable energy policy.  However,  I have no desire to write even more blog posts next year.

I wish all my readers a happy, healthy, peaceful and prosperous New Year!


Travelogue for the Universe said...

Nice work! It is not how many posts. It is the power contained within. Best wishes in 2013. Now makes me wonder about large gas pipeline the Canadians want to put through our town. We have had precious little info, no offers for residents to tap in on the way through and clearly environmental impacts. No public comment. Oh, now a little meeting. Town finally questioning.Blogs like yours help clarify the impact of today's decisions with science and history, rules of law, not emotion. Best wishes! mary

Meredith Angwin said...

Thank you so much Mary!
I wish you and your family a very healthy and happy New Year!
About the gas pipeline. In my opinion, the PSB rolled over completely on that one. Well, not completely. The two junior members outvoted the commissioner about the pipeline funding, so the Commissioner, at least, was on the side of the consumers. Here's my March post on the subject.
On the other hand, if a gas pipeline meant to supply Canadian gas to homes goes through a town, I would assume (but I am often wrong) that it would be reasonable to supply gas to that town, also.

Howard Shaffer said...

A great year!!

Your work was heroic!!

We, all the supporters of Vermont Yankee, got great feedback.

I look forward to a different year in 2013. We are waiting on the Courts, but we can't sit back. Politics goes on forever!