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Aug 22, 2014 - The nuclear fuel industry experienced a spate of positive news this week with Unit 1 of the Fuqing nuclear station connected to the grid as the tenth operating reactor in China; the Chinese-designed CPR-1,000 (PWR) is expected to enter commercial operation by year end. The Fuqing facility will eventually house six Chinese-designed units. This year has seen considerable nuclear power growth in China, as the nation has brought online three new reactors with a total capacity of 3.2 GWe (Yangjiang Unit 1, Hongyanhe Unit 2, and Ningde Unit 2). China is also building four Westinghouse AP1000 reactors—two each at the Sanmen and Haiyang nuclear power facilities. Separately, US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz championed the use of nuclear power and urged politicians and leaders in the energy industry to adapt and modernize energy production to help minimize the fallout from global warming, while speaking this week at the inaugural Intermountain Energy Summit in Idaho. Repeating the Obama administration’s “all of the above” energy strategy, Moniz said the USA isn’t shunning coal or oil energy sources. Instead, officials are finding ways to reduce the fuels’ carbon emissions. Moniz added that funding and improving the nation’s 17 nuclear laboratories must be made a higher priority. Japan, which is expected to restart Sendai Units 1 and 2 by as early as year end, aims to decide the percentage of electricity to be generated by nuclear power by late 2015, when a United Nations climate conference is held in Paris. A revised national energy plan adopted in April declared nuclear power generation an “important base load power source.” Meanwhile spot uranium supply remains thin, as sellers continue to increase offer prices. Potential buyers serious about purchasing are faced with paying higher prices, foregoing their preferred delivery location, or exiting the market in hopes of securing material later. As a result, spot uranium prices inched up again and ended the week at $31.25 per pound U3O8. Prices in transactions concluded throughout the week spanned a range above and below this price level depending on delivery location, form, origin, and delivery timing. Six transactions are reported this week, which brings total year-to-date spot market volume to 22.3 million pounds U3O8 equivalent. TradeTech’s Weekly U3O8 Spot Price Indicator is $31.25 per pound U3O8, an increase of $0.75 from last week’s value, and up $0.25 from the August 21 Daily U3O8 Spot Price Indicator. read more