An uNclear Future

25 years on from Chernobyl: Nuclear’s unclear future, and the on-going renaissance for alternative energy stocks Karl L. Mitchell, Ph.D. Summary On April 26th, 1986, the world’s worst nuclear accident occurred at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in northern Ukraine.  The blast spewed a cloud of radioactive fallout over much of Europe, causing many hundreds of thousands to flee from their homes in Ukraine, Belarus and western Russia.  25 years later we are facing the only other level 7 event on the International Nuclear Event Scale; at Fukushima, Japan.  Although less immediately catastrophic, it has resulted in...
nuclear power plant

List of Nuclear Energy Stocks

Nuclear energy stocks are publicly traded companies that develop, own, or manage nuclear power plants or the technology and equipment used in such plants. Ameren Corp (AEE) Areva (ARVCF) Brookfield Business Partners (BBU) Cameco Corporation (CCJ) China General Nuclear (1816.HK) Dominion Energy Inc (D) Duke Energy Corp (DUK) Exelon Corp. (EXC) FirstEnergy Corp (FE) Fluor Corporation (FLR) General Electric (GE) Global Power Equipment (GLPW) Global X Uranium ETF (URA) IBC Advanced Alloys Corp (IAALF) International Isotopes (INIS) Kansai Electric Power Co Inc (9503.T) Korea Electric Power Corp ADR (KEP.KS) Lightbridge Corporation (LTBR) Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd (7011.T) PG&E Corp (PCG) Public Service Enterprise Group Inc (PEG) Siemens (SIEGY) Silex Systems Limited (SLX.AX) Toshiba Corporation (6502.T) UR Energy, Inc. (URG) iShares S&P Global Nuclear Energy Index...

Energy Dominoes From Japan

Joe McCabe Energy amazes me; the ramifications from elementary school physics of converting potential energy into kinetic energy.  It's happening everywhere around us, and can have far reaching ramifications. An example is the potential energy in the form of pressure built up under Japan in plate tectonics before the recent earthquake, turned into land shaking, country moving, tsunami creating kinetic energy that reaches across the world. There are other forces, lets call it society energy, that can create financial shock waves in the energy industry including political, religious, and inaccurate supply curve assumptions. Energy Industry Domino...

Smale Scale Nukes

by Debra Fiakas CFA The on-going crisis at one of Japan’s key nuclear power plants following earthquake and tsunami damage has everyone, even proponents of nuclear energy on edge. Previous nuclear accidents, such as the disasters at Russia’s Chernobyl reactor and the U.S.’s Three Mile Island, were traced back to human error. Now it appears regulators and operators of Japan’s Fukushima plant may have had some awareness that the plant design could not withstand the onslaught of a major tsunami. Again better human performance may have averted the situation that now threatens a breach of a reactor core. Designers...

Light at the End of the Tunnel for Lightbridge

by Debra Fiakas CFA The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to execute on the Clean Power Plan aimed at reducing carbon emissions from U.S. power generation facilities.  Each state has to meet a set of standards set by the EPA based that state’s particular circumstances in electrical generation.  The carbon pollution limits begin in 2022 and ramp to full effect by 2030. In the meantime, the power generation industry must begin preparation in order to be ready for the initial standards.  The lower-carbon emitting power sources will clearly be in favor as a consequence of the...

Nations in Nuclear Play And The Companies To Benefit

by Debra Fiakas Saudi Arabia plans to build 17.8 gigawatts of nuclear capacity by 2032, requiring about sixteen reactors.  It is an ambitious plan and one that could have a significant impact on the nuclear power construction industry.  Now the Saudi government is moving forward with a bidding process with nuclear power plant construction companies.  Bids are expected before the end of 2018 and signing of contracts will be sometime in 2019. Our review of possible bidders began with Toshiba’s (6502:  Tokyo) Westinghouse Electric Company and Russia’s Rosatom Group.  The last two posts, “Saudi Arabia Goes Nuclear” on January 16th and “Answering Saudi Arabia Request...
NuScale SMR

NuScale’s Small Nuclear Reactors Land A Big Investor

by Debra Fiakas, CFA NuScale Power is in a new pact with South Korea’s Doosan Heavy Industries and Construction Co. to support development of NuScale’s small modular reactor (SMR).  In addition to direct investment of $40 million in NuScale, Doosan has agreed to provide parts and equipment for the innovative nuclear power reactor valued at a total of $1.2 billion. NuScale has been working on its power reactor for several years.  The new design is based on pressurized water reactor (PWR) technology that has been used to power nuclear submarines and naval vessels.  The design uses ordinary water as a coolant rather than ‘heavy’ water used by...

Watch This Nuclear Player Boil

by Debra Fiakas CFA The last post on Chicago Bridge and Iron (CBI: NYSE) noted the entrance of CBI into the nuclear field with the acquisition of The Shaw Group, which has an exclusive relationship with Toshiba Corporation related to the Toshiba Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR).  More evolutionary than revolutionary the ABWR is supposed to be superior other designs in its light water reactor class.  ABWR produces power by superheating water to the boiling point. The resulting steam is then used to drive a turbine attached to a generator.  Other light water reactors also heat...

Lightbridge Flirts with Areva

by Debra Fiakas CFA Last week nuclear fuel developer Lightbridge Corporation (LTBR:  Nasdaq) announced an agreement with nuclear power plant builder Areva (AREVA:  Paris; ARVCF:  OTC/QB) to form a joint venture.  The present pact is a precursor to a formal joint venture agreement that would team up the two companies  -  one very large multinational nuclear power house and one still quite small fuel developer  -  in joint development of Lightbridge’s metallic nuclear fuel technology. Lightbridge has developed and patented a novel design that replaces conventional tubes filled with ceramic uranium pellets now used by pressurized...

Nuclear Stocks: Too Hot for an Eco Portfolio?

Guest Author Nuclear energy is not the “bad boy” it once was For many years, nuclear energy was labelled as a potential threat to the environment as well as the global population.  Interestingly enough, the memories of the disasters at Chernobyl and Three Mile Island are now distant and the perspective of nuclear energy is changing in positive fashion.  The growing worries created by the ballooning demands on the world’s energy sources, an increase in the competition for energy supplies, rising concerns regarding global warming, and the volatility of the gas and oil prices are reasons that...

NextEra Energy: the Real Attraction

by Debra Fiakas CFA One member of the NuStart Energy consortium of nuclear power developers is Florida Power & Light or FPL Group, a subsidiary of NextEra Energy (NEE: NYSE).  The group had its sights on getting a nuclear power plant construction and operating license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).  The company operates the third largest nuclear power generation fleet in the U.S. composed of eight nuclear reactors at five plant sites.  The fleet is far flung, ranging from Florida to New Hampshire and Wisconsin and West to Iowa. FPL is working on an expansion of...

Four Green Money Managers’ Top Stock Picks

Green money managers' stock picks after the Japanese nuclear crisis. Even as the nuclear disaster in Japan unfolds, it's clear that the world's energy industry will be forever changed. Russian reactors were never considered safe, but a Japanese to have a nuclear meltdown is an entirely different story. Market Reaction Since Monday, nuclear stocks and ETFs have been plummeting. As of Wednesday night, The Market Vectors Uranium + Nuclear Energy ETF (NYSE:NLR), the iShares S&P Global Nuclear Energy Index (NASD:NUCL), PowerShares Global Nuclear Energy Portfolio ETF (NYSE:PKN), and the Global X Uranium ETF (NYSE:URA) are down...
uranium mine

Flocking to Uranium

The post Yellow Cake Debut described the capital raising effort of one of the newest players in the uranium supply chain.  Yellow Cake leadership brought the aspiring intermediary to the capital market at a critical time for uranium producers.  The uranium market has been in an extended trough period since the industry peak in 2007.  At that time considerable development had been undertaken and capacity was beginning to generate sufficient supply to create stockpiled inventories.  As this bloated condition persisted, in 2011 the nuclear power and its uranium supply chain were shocked by a Pacific Ocean tsunami that led to a nuclear spill at...
NuScale reactor

Two Stocks That Could Benefit From NuScale’s Sucess

After toiling away for almost two decades, perfecting its nuclear power reactor design, NuScale Power is on the cusp of commercial stage with its innovative Small Modular Reactor (SMR).  The company has applied for certification by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and expects to approval by 2021.  In a departure from conventional construction methods NuScale’s SMR is to be manufactured in a factory setting and assembled on site. NuScale has also lined up a first customer, the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS), which is planning to build a nuclear power plant with twelve of NuScale’s 50-gigawatt SMRs.  UAMPS expects its project to be...

Clean Energy Stocks to Fill the Nuclear Gap

Tom Konrad, CFA If the Japanese use less nuclear power, what will take its place? I'm astounded by the resilience and discipline of the Japanese people in response to the three-pronged earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster, perhaps in large part by my cultural roots in the egocentric United States, where we seem to have forgotten the virtue of self-sacrifice for the greater good.  Yet while Japanese society has shown itself to be particularly resilient, the Japanese electric grid is much less resilient.  According to International Energy Agency statistics, Japan produced 258 TWh of electricity from...

Book Review: Public Meltdown

Ben Plotzker The Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant. The focus on the public’s view of nuclear plant operator Entergy (NYSE:ETR) sets Public Meltdown: The Story of the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant, by Richard Watts apart from other nuclear energy books.  The book avoids pro or anti-nuclear positions, and focus on scientific aspects of the plant, and instead tells the story of one nuclear plant’s journey through history.  That plant is Vermont Yankee, a General Electric (GE) boiling water reactor type, the same...