A Stranger in a Strange Conference #EDU2019

Energy Disrupters Unite 2019. A smaller conference in an important city in an important province in a country that I love, even with it's problems. Here I spent 2 days listening to some of the most driven, and insightful people I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. Their talks wandered over and through... Continue Reading →

A Nuclear Nerd Presents to the Edmonton Energy Transition Leadership Network

Foreward: So I didn't post on friday last week because I was busy writing a presentation. It was not in fact this presentation that is below, it was an entirely different one that I determined was crap and scrapped late friday night. Thus forcing me to build this new one from scratch 4 days before... Continue Reading →

The Next Steps for ANN

Hello to everyone, Almost since I started ANN people have reached out to either myself or Alberta Nuclear Nucleus in general and expressed interest in our goals and asked if there was anything they could do to help. And up until now, my answer was always, "not yet, but soon". Well, Soon has finally arrived.... Continue Reading →

A Nuke Nerd at the City of Edmonton Executive Committee

So there was no post last friday because I was busy writing and practicing the speech I gave yesterday. It was to the Edmonton Executive Committee talking about Climate Change. Thanks to Aaron Hinman who recorded my speech and single question that was asked of me so you all don't have to sit through 8... Continue Reading →

Nuclear Safety: Sophistication vs. Capability, A Metaphor.

So I've found that talking about nuclear safety doesn't really resonate with people. Whether it's because they think that it's far too complicated and immediately file it under "too much work" or because they might actually recognize how much work goes into it, thus putting it in the "it will just work" folder of their... Continue Reading →

The Efficiency Paradox: Envisioning a No Guilt, No Holds Barred Future.

How many of you have ever upgraded your washing machine, or dryer, or dishwasher to a new, high efficiency model? Or maybe you remember your parents doing so when you were younger? And now how many of you remember that you started using it more than you used the old one? Yes my lovelies. Make... Continue Reading →

The Other Nuclear in Alberta Pt. 1: What is Fusion?

Today we have the first guest post in ANN's long, storied history. Ethan Dorward, a former associate of a Dr. Robert Fedosejevs at the University of Alberta working on fusion research, got in touch with me about putting out a series of articles talking about fusion research in Alberta and what the general progress is.... Continue Reading →

Teenage Rebellion on a massive scale.

Changing the colours you like to wear? Check. Going where people tell you not to, to do things you shouldn't? Check. Ignoring people who want to help you? Check. And believing you have all the answers if only people would listen to you? Check. The one on the left is the asshole responsible for a... Continue Reading →

Nuclear and Energy Storage: Getting the balance just right

Variability is an inescapable factor of energy usage. It doesn't matter if your grid supplies 1, 10, 1000, or 10,000,000 people. Just today Alberta's energy usage fluctuated by almost an entire GW over the course of the day. And this is a fairly nice spring day, not too much heat required and almost no AC... Continue Reading →

Nuclear in Alberta: What is our Perception?

So if you dug into my link on Friday to the Alberta Nuclear Consultation document, at the end of it you would have seen a survey that was given out back when that was published in 2009 for residents and interested parties to fill out. One astute reader pointed me in the direction of the... Continue Reading →

Nuclear in Alberta: What could have been and could still be

So recently I found this. The public release document about the attempt to put a CANDU facility up in Peace River, Alberta. It's a great document, very clearly written and covers all the need to know bases for people wondering about nuclear power in Alberta. But what I really want to draw peoples attention to... Continue Reading →

Nuclear Money: How expensive is today compared to tomorrow?

How much more is a dollar today worth compared to a dollar tomorrow? what about a year from now? or 10? This is a huge question in the energy industry, and particular groups have very different answers to it. I wish people would stop sending messages like this, we could really use all that money...... Continue Reading →

Indirect Income: Load Following, Potholes, and the Elderly

Dear Mom, please ignore the next paragraph. Just move on to the third one and pretend that that is the real beginning of this post. Fuck potholes and all their horrible children. Avatars of the impermanence of mans creations and active forces of entropy that love to do nothing more than wreck tires, throw steering... Continue Reading →

Australian Questions, Canadian Answers, Commonwealth Camaraderie.

Australia, I just want you to know before I get started that I love you and I don't mean to hurt you. You're surrounded by friends here and we just want what is best for you and all the rest of us. This is an intervention against your pointless fear. These questions were taken and... Continue Reading →

Nuclear “Waste” pt.4: And only I will remain

For thousands of years, humanity has had the crazy idea that things could be turned into other things. The most famous example of this pursuit is the transmutation of lead into gold. But nowadays it is not much more than a metaphor than the creation of something valuable from something considered basal, put in the... Continue Reading →

Nuclear Waste pt.3: I will face my fear

So most waste is barely radioactive and the stuff that is dangerous is a tiny fraction of what we currently consider it to be... so what do we do with it? Well, right now the answer is not a lot. As I said, the LLW gets held onto until it's below background levels and then... Continue Reading →

Nuclear Waste Pt. 2: Fear is the little death

10,000 years, 50,000 years, 100,000 years... figures regularly tossed around to scare people into wanting to prevent nuclear reactors from being built because "what will we do with the waste?" So let's dive a little deeper into what High-Level Waste is. Remember from the last article, HLW is the spent fuel bundles that were used... Continue Reading →

Nuclear Waste Pt. 1: Fear is the mind-killer

I'm sure you've seen images like this before. Something to make you feel unsafe or scared. Bright colours, visible warning signs, all things that point to those drums being filled with things that are horribly dangerous, and likely to leak out at any moment and poison the surrounding area à la The Simpsons. The reality is... actual... Continue Reading →

Back of the nuclear napkin: Cost efficiency.

People don't seem to believe me when I say that Nuclear would be one of the cheapest ways to switch over to zero-carbon energy. So welcome to another rough and ready math attempt. We'll take 3 different scenarios: nuclear, solar PV and off-shore wind as these seem to be the most common grid-scale applications of... Continue Reading →

Reasons for Nuclear: The KISS principle

I have always been a man of seemingly conflicting interests. I'm an engineer and scientist in my core, I appreciate the ability to be productive and useful in logical and quantifiable ways. But I have also been vigorously involved in the Arts and know that unquantifiable efforts can be productive in their own right. Every... Continue Reading →

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