Monday, August 31, 2015

Exelon's Nuclear Plant Shutdown Follies

So now its Oct 1, 2015? Supposedly a line limits the load during critical periods making the plant unprofitable. Why don't they upgrade the capacity of the line.

Bottom line, Exelon 10 years ago owed the employees a brand new facility. They should have had a replacement facility up and running ten years ago, the current facility now in decommissioning.  
Future uncertain for Quad Cities nuclear plant 
CHICAGO (AP) — Exelon Corp. has until Oct. 1 to decide if it'll close its unprofitable Quad Cities nuclear plant, and is still pushing state lawmakers for a fix. The company says the two-reactor plant in Cordova is losing money because of high costs of moving electricity along transmission lines shared with wind power and increased competition from lower-cost natural gas-fired plants.

Exelon is asking legislators to approve a monthly surcharge on consumers' electricity bills that would generate about $300 million annually to help keep unprofitable plants open. Company officials say that's fair because renewable energy like wind and solar receive subsidies. But opponents say Exelon is a profitable company and doesn't need a bailout for a few unprofitable plants. They say Illinois should concentrate on increasing the market for renewable energy and promoting energy efficiency programs.

Clinton nuclear plant owner to decide facility's fate

The company learned that one of the at-risk plants – in Byron – is going to make millions after a recent electricity reliability auction, while the future of the third plant, Clinton in the central part of the state, is still in doubt.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Voodoo Medicine At The NRC

Update 8/31
The so called violation in the Confirmatory Letter are illusory Violations. They totally bypass is as if they really don't count to the NRC. Basically the violations are a off the books contractual agreement between the NRC and Dominion...a agreement saying they are violations. This has no bearing on the "report card grade" of Dominion.
Honestly this emerged from a highly skilled professional Millstone looks like the NRC is burying his concerns. This is a NRC failure.

This began with a official employee NRC allegation in 2011, why did it take so long for the agency admit it with a Confirmatory Letter.

Justice delayed is justice denied. I think with all those NRC employees the agency should make a swift determination of wrong-doing and then quickly make the licensee bring the facility back to licensing condition.

It should never be a negotiation of should be a demand with a noose around their necks if they don't comply.

They decay heat deal has a long history. Taking to many professional, the decay heat deal is astonishing. Shocking. In the last life mid (1990s) it created a host of whistleblowers on  site and got them shutdown for three years.  Basically it took them 3 years to deal with it. It is like getting a speeding ticket three years after speeding. 

OI Investigation

Pg 1 inspection Front Page: This letter refers to an investigation completed on May 23, 2013, by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's (NRC's) Office of Investigations (01) at Dominion Nuclear Connecticut's (DNC's) Millstone Power Station (Millstone). The purpose of the investigation was to determine if DNC staff deliberately violated NRC requirements…

Pg 1 Factual Summary: On November 4, 2011, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's (NRC's) Office of Investigations (01), Region I Field Office, conducted an investigation to determine if Dominion Nuclear Connecticut (DNC) staff at Millstone Nuclear Power Station (Millstone) deliberately violated NRC requirements in Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) Section 50.59, "Changes, Tests, and Experiments," when implementing changes to documents related to the Millstone, Unit 2 chemical and volume control system (CVCS) charging pumps and spent fuel decay time limits.

In a letter dated April 29, 2015, the NRC provided DNC the results of the investigation, informed DNC that escalated enforcement action was being considered for two of the three apparent violations, and offered DNC the opportunity to attend a predecisional enforcement conference or to participate in ADR in which a neutral mediator with no decision-making authority would facilitate discussions between the NRC and DNC.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Millstone Dominion: Zombie NRC

I have something to say about this later. Why didn't this stop last years dual plant trip and LOOP? Basically the same problem stated in the OI investigation. Why is the agency is years behind the massive engineering decline of a nuclear plant?
No: I-15-034 August 27, 2015
CONTACT: Diane Screnci, 610-337-5330 E-mail:
Neil Sheehan, 610-337-5331

Dominion Institutes Corrective Actions at Millstone Nuclear Plant Under Settlement Agreement with NRC
Under a settlement agreement reached with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Dominion is implementing a broad range of corrective actions at its Millstone Unit 2 nuclear power plant in Waterford, Conn. These actions are designed to address violations of certain regulations, prevent recurrences and respond to questions the NRC raised regarding changes involving a reactor safety system at the facility.  
The settlement was achieved under the NRC’s Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) process after apparent violations of agency regulations were identified during an investigation by the NRC’s Office of Investigations. 

"The use of the ADR process in this case has yielded meaningful corrective actions on the part of Dominion that are designed to prevent these kinds of issues from occurring in the future, at Millstone and at other U.S. nuclear power plants," said Scott Morris, Director of the Division of Inspection and Regional Support in the NRC’s Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation. "The lessons learned will be shared at the site, throughout the Dominion nuclear plant fleet and throughout the industry." 
In September 2011, the NRC became aware that Dominion, the plant’s owner and operator, had submitted requests for NRC approval of amendments to the Millstone Unit 2 operating license that were incomplete and inaccurate. The requests sought to modify the requirements for Millstone Unit 2’s charging pumps and irradiated fuel decay time.
The Office of Investigations initiated an investigation in November 2011 to determine if wrongdoing had occurred. In an inspection report issued on April 29, 2015, the agency notified Dominion that the violations were being considered for heightened, or escalated, enforcement.

The first violation considered for escalated enforcement was for a willful violation for changes made to the plant’s Updated Final Safety Analysis Report, without a license amendment, that removed credit for a specific type of safety-related pump in the mitigation of a postulated accident. The second violation was a non-willful violation for a failure to provide complete and accurate information to the NRC pertaining to the changes. A third apparent violation, related to Dominion’s failure to obtain a
license amendment prior to making changes related to spent fuel pool heat-load analysis, was not considered for escalated enforcement. 
The NRC offered Dominion a choice of attending an enforcement conference or ADR to address the apparent violations. ADR entails a trained neutral mediator working with the parties to reach resolution on the issues. ADR can result in broad, long-term corrective actions.
Based on those discussions, a settlement agreement was reached. In exchange for the array of corrective actions by Dominion, the NRC agreed not to pursue further enforcement action against the company related to the apparent violations. The NRC issued a legally binding Confirmatory Order on Aug. 26, 2015, that requires the company to, among other things:

● Make any needed changes to plant procedures governing the operation and testing of the charging pumps, and perform an evaluation of the use of the pumps.

● Issue a fleet-wide communication to reinforce the importance of providing complete and accurate information to the NRC. 
● Submit a license amendment request to the NRC addressing the use of charging pumps and seek the agency’s approval of the spent fuel pool heat-load analysis.  
● Complete an assessment of its 50.59 program. (50.59 refers to a section of NRC regulations that allows plant owners to make changes to their facilities without prior NRC approval, provided certain criteria are satisfied.) The results of the assessment will be provided to the NRC and any corrective actions deemed necessary will be performed. 

● Complete a formal sampling program of plant changes made under the 50.59 program since 2002 to identify whether other deficiencies exist in this program.

● Provide a presentation at an industry forum to discuss the events that led to the Confirmatory Order.
The NRC will follow up to ensure the corrective actions are fully implemented. A copy of the settlement agreement is available in the NRC’s ADAMS electronic documents system under Accession Number ML15236A207.

Mike Mulligan's List of Zombie Nuclear Power Plants

Basically 14 16 known plants who are severely financially threatened.

We are talking about a terminus amount of grid capacity.

That is about a amazing 15% of our nuclear fleet capacity nation wide...

We are facing this worsening condition for many years...

Under severe economic pressure. One big embarrassing accident away from a shutdown! My main beef with nuclear power is these plants don't get enough funding keeping up with the best maintenance and equipment updating. Everyone has to settle for less.  

Former Exelon CEO Rowe: Shutting down struggling nukes is 'the proper market-driven answer'

Basically any merchant nuclear plant is at tremendous risk of a shutdown.

Ten Exelon plants facing the proverbial electric chair...
Clinton one plant (1)

Quad Cities two plants (2)
Dresden (2) 
Byron two Plants (2)

Oyster Creek one plant (1)
Three Mike Island 1 (1)
Ginna  (1)
My list:
Pilgrim (1)

Fitzpatrick (1)
Wolf Creek (1) 
Fort Calhoun  (1)
Indian Point (2) 

Saudis Bombing Our Nuclear Industry and our State of Texas.

Look at how crazy I sounded in in Oct 2014. I was widely optimistic. Now the Iraniums (Iran) are saying they will pump out at any price in order to gain market share. They are predicting by the end of fall most gasoline will sell at less than $ 2.00 a gallon. There is a lot of components causing petroleum including natural gas fracting. Look at where this $2.00 gas sits on the graph? I think this will last for 5 to 8 years.  

There is a lot of funny stuff going on in the grid trying to artificially bolster the price of electricity...sabotage low priced electricity. The low cost electricity today is mostly supporting the uncompetitive stock price of the utilities, not to drive low cost electricity to support our great nation and the greater economy.

I'd basically say all greenie electricity is ostensibly aimed towards supporting exorbitant electric prices to support the faltering utility stock prices. Most of the state and greenie subsidies is stealing food and support for poor people, massively sucking taxes from supporting government to us all and especially the poor people. Honestly, greenie energy is the greatest invention of the teabaggers and government haters. Do you want expensive green energy or roads, bridge and infrastructure. 

I don't mind a independent market that sells non productive expensive green electricity to rich 1%er people for empty status, environmental vanity and egotism...   

It is as if god evented the universe for the benefit for electric utilities...not god evented the utilities to support our nation and society.   

Reposted from Oct 10, 2014

Have you seen the decline in the prices of gasoline of recent? It is less than 3 bucks in Boston in some places. There is a high likelihood we are in price war and forces are aimed at destroying a large percentage of our expensive petroleum production capability.
Gets you wondering if this is how war looks like with Islamic fundamentalism.
A massive drop in petroleum prices and our real-estate,  S&Ls  and banks crumbles.  The last time this happed was in the Iraq and Iran war. These crazy guys were flooding the world with petroleum in order to limit their purchase of military weapon, along with the Saudis trying to reclaim their market share.  These guys nearly destroyed our well drilling capabilities and the economy of Texas was devastated with near depression level of economic declines.
All the other sources of energy are keyed to the price of petroleum.  I bet you we will be seeing at least a 33% decline in the price of electricity without considering our USA petroleum and natural gas miracle in the coming decade.
Texas is screwed again! Expensive green electricity is toast and I expect more bank failures over this.
The 1980s almost destroyed nuclear industry. The buildup of cost cutting nearly decimated our nuclear capacity by the mid 1990s. Do you remember all the nuclear industry troubles building up in the early 1990s and the Commissioner Jackson era?  The Saudis and others have commenced bombing our nuclear industry and the state of Texas as we speak!    

Oops, There Goes TMI...

“This auction was the first held under new "capacity performance" reforms designed to spur investment in power plants that will improve their performance and strengthen electric grid reliability.”
Translated: basically in the frigid polar vortex in recent past plants trip off the line for a number of reasons. It really wasn’t unexspected cold winter temperatures…we invented a new phrase for the expected winter temperatures. Instead of severely punishing plants the non preforming plants…we allow them to blackmail us into giving them more money for electricity. They are basically colluding to withhold electricity from the grid to jack up all our rates.
Basically our whole electric system is horrendously dysfunctional…where is Donald Trump when you need him?    
Here is eight nuclear plants that are directly under the pall of a closure due to not profitability and low grid prices. It is only going to get worst. We see safety only in terms of broken and degraded equipment. We see safety in terms of our material world. What as safety in terms of the spirit of a human being? We never considered the magnitude of a condition as this with such power to do harm.

All these economically degraded and in decline plants should be under a special watch by the NRC. A lot more scrutiny and inspector hours should be apportioned to threatened plants.      

Could the Three Mile Island nuclear plant be headed for premature closure?

Last week, no one bought a year’s worth of TMI’s electricity at a key energy-buying auction held by PJM, the regional transmission organization that coordinates the movement of power in all or parts of 13 states and the District of Columbia.

The PJM Capacity Auction is not the only place TMI owner Exelon can sell the plant’s electricity, but it’s a key and profitable one.

The results have led to speculation that Exelon may be considering closing TMI as it is considering doing at three of its nuclear plants in Illinois.

Asked if the plant was in a troubled financial situation, Ralph DeSantis, Exelon’s spokesman at TMI, issued this statement: “The fact that TMI did not clear the 2018-2019 auction makes it clear the plant’s economics are challenged.

“We will continue to work with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and stakeholders to improve market design to recognize the significant reliability and environmental value TMI provides.”

Asked if Exelon was seeking protective legislation from Pennsylvania state legislators, DeSantis replied, “We mean everyone involved in creating policy for environmental regulations and market regulations…could include legislators.”

Exelon’s corporate headquarters also addressed the situation after power at three of its nuclear plants, including TMI, were not purchased at the auction.

“Although capacity revenue in a single year is an important consideration in a plant’s long-term viability, it is just one of several factors Exelon will use to make decisions about its plants’ future operations,” Exelon said in a statement.

Said Exelon CEO Chris Crane, “We will consider auction results. along with other data points, including EPA’s Clean Power Plan, as we make decisions about the future of these critical long-life assets.”

In Illinois, Exelon has threatened to close as many as three of its money-losing nuclear plants because of competition from natural gas and subsidized wind energy.

Two of those three plants are in the PJM, as is TMI, and neither of the Illinois plants were competititive enough to sell electricity in the last auction in May 2014.

Exelon has sought support from Illinois legislators and one bill being considered would require the state's utilities to buy 70 percent of their power from "low carbon" sources such as that generated by nuclear plants. The utilities could offset that cost by charging ratepayers with a surcharge of up to 2 percent.

Eric Epstein of the clean-energy group Three Mile Island Alert had this to say about TMI’s shutout at the capacity auction: “Single reactor sites like TMI are more vulnerable to closure since they are unprofitable and require  government and ratepayer subsidies.

“Several developments this summer have weakened the nuclear industry and wrought havoc on Exelon's corporate fortunes: EPA devalued nuclear's role in combating carbon emissions, three Exleon plants, including TMI, did not clear PJM capacity auctions, and the DC Public Service Commission nixed the Exelon-Pepco merger.

“TMI's shuttering creates long-term problems for the local community, and will intensify the shortfall in cleanup funding, and postpone the storage of high-level radioactive waste from spent fuel pools to dry casks.

“It's hard to imagine a scenario where Three Mile Island does not become a permanent nuclear garbage site in the middle of the Susquehanna River."

The increasing building of power plants fired by cheaper natural gas is clearly resulting in cheaper electricity being sold on the wholesale market.

Talen Energy announced recently that it would retrofit its coal-fired Brunner Island power plant along the Susquehanna River in York County so it can also burn natural gas.

On the other hand, owners of nuclear plants are hoping that the President Obama administration's Clean Power Plan to cut back on sources of carbon dioxide, such as coal plants, will raise the value of nuclear plants.

Says DeSantis, “Exelon is continuing its ongoing work to educate policymakers and others about the fact that markets are failing to properly value nuclear power’s environmental and reliability benefits and the need to find solutions that will correct that.”

In 2009, Exelon received a license extension from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to continue operating TMI until 2034.  

Exelon is the nation’s largest owner and operator of nuclear plants, with 22 reactors in 13 locations, including TMI and the Peach Bottom nuclear plant in York County.

TMI produces enough electricity to power 800,000 homes. The plant has 520 employees, the majority of whom live in Lancaster and Dauphin counties.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Nuclear engineer Pissed No Clear Definition of "Important To Safety"?

He is complaining to the NRC. Why did it take so long?
From: Kurt Schaefer

To: Rule making Comments Resource

Date: Monday, July 20, 2015 4:07:25 AM

Attachments: Request for Rule Making.pdf

Office of the Secretary;

I have been performing nuclear power plant (NPP) licensing since in 1980, and have never met two people that agree about what nonsafety-related structures, systems and components (SSCs) should be categorized as "important to safety." That is because there is only a general description of what is "important to safety" in 10 CFR 50 Appendix A, and the regulations do not provide a specific set of criteria for determining which SSCs are "important to safety."

The term “important to safety” is used in numerous regulations and NRC guidance documents. In addition, one of the regulations most used at NPPs, 10 CFR 50.59, has used and after a number of revisions still uses that term for evaluating changes to determine if a license amendment is required before making a change. Therefore, there are regulations, regulatory guidance and routinely generated regulatory evaluations, based on SSCs with no specific criteria that determines what are the applicable SSCs.

Since 1984, there have been differences of opinion on what SSCs are “important to safety.” The nuclear industry is on its third generation of engineers and regulators with no clear definition of what is “important to safety.” At this point, there is no excuse for not having a concise set of functional criteria defining such a used term. The attachment provides a request for rule making to define (i.e., provide criteria for determining) "important to safety."
Kurt Schaefer

Principal Licensing Engineer

P.S. I am currently working in Korea, and my cell phone does not function here.

Therefore, please contact me by email.

Amazingly Low NE Wholesale Electric Price in July 2015

Wholesale electricity prices and demand in New England, July 2015                   
Amazingly Low Wholesale Electric Price in 2015 July   

Another month of low natural gas prices brought July’s average power price to the third-lowest monthly level in 12 years

Following on June’s record-setting average natural gas and wholesale electricity prices, which were the lowest monthly prices in 12 years in New England, July’s prices were also very low, but slightly higher than June’s record. The average monthly natural gas price was 37% lower than the average price during July 2014, and was the third-lowest monthly average in 12 years. As a result of the low natural gas prices, July’s average wholesale power price was the third-lowest since March 2003, when New England launched competitive power markets in their current form. The July average power price was $25.40 per megawatt-hour (MWh)*, 27% below the year-ago price.
July brought warmer weather that drove up air conditioning use, which drove up demand for power. As a result, total power usage during July was almost 20% higher than during June. The average price of natural gas during July was almost 17% higher than the June price. July’s average real-time electric energy price of $25.40/MWh was about 30% higher than June’s average price of $19.61/MWh, the lowest monthly price in 12 years.
In fact, wholesale power and natural gas prices during April, May, June and July this year are among the lowest monthly averages since March 2003 in New England. But these low prices come on the heels of near-record-high prices just a few months earlier, highlighting the price volatility stemming from natural gas pipeline constraints during periods of high demand in New England. February, the coldest month since 1960, brought the third-highest average wholesale price of power of $126.70/MWh. Due to heavy demand for natural gas for both heating and power generation, combined with pipeline constraints, the average price of natural gas during February was $17.27 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) **, the fourth-highest monthly level since 2003.  

Last night Thought Something was On Fire At Vermont Yankee?

Yep, at about the same time, Cersosimo Lumber yard was burning scraps again tonight. Different atmosphere conditions, the plume wasn't going up in the air. The smoke was staying on the ground. I never notice this before. I bet you they been doing this for decades.     
***I am on my bike trail near my house by the Vernon dam. They got a virgin piece of forest abutting the is just a glorious ride on my mountain bike. I am on the peninsula. I am taking a wonderful picture with my new cell phone camera (Galaxy S6). It voice records things even better.

I spin around to see this below at Vermont Yankee. All I can assume is its coming from the plant. It is about 7:45 pm on a Tuesday night. I am thinking VY is burning construction debris. It is so late in the evening.  

The recordings of my call phone conversations reporting the fire: 
Basically I continued on with my trail ride heading about two miles south. I was right across the river from Vermont Yankee near the Hinsdale Connecticut River setback. The fire was coming from the Cersosimo Lumber yard in Vernon. Why were they burning scrap lumber at 7:45 pm on a Tuesday night? Why didn't they notify the Vernon fire department they were going to do it. Did they have a fire permit?
I thought of the whole deal, better to be safe than sorry??? 
I was disappointed with VY. I wished they would have taken my name and number, gave me a courtesy call back explaining there was no fire at the site and we think it was in the Cersosimo lumber yard burning scrap lumber.    

LaSalle Nuclear Plant Purchasing Junk Foreign Secuity Weapons?

I proposed this a few years back and got a FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force visit a few years back. It was very unpleasant meeting at my local police department headquarters with two special agents. Basically my theme on the internet was, the bad guys stealing the guard force's weapons and then they attacking the control room and gaining control of the facility. Didn't mention anything about stealing any ammo? There is not that much difference between stealing the security forces guns and bad guys entering the control room to do harm. Right, stealing the guns bypasses all the security controls at a nuclear power plant. The idea of bad guys entering the control room using regular methods with unapproved weapons.

Why wasn't the gun locker room thoroughly security camera'd up?

I got a new Galaxy s6. I have to use my thumb print in order to open up my screen. Do they use similar or face recognition software for entering the control room? The scenario is the bad guys with the stolen guns could steal a card key and thus could gain access to the control room with the guns. Maybe the janitors or the guys filling up the vending machine could be in cahoots with the security guys who stole the guns?

Maybe even the worst out of this whole deal; why is Exelon purchasing foreign Swiss guns. Why is Exelon so unpatriotic with not purchasing US guns? Doesn't Exelon care about jobs for American workers?  Isn't their similar quality guns made in the USA? You go Donald Trump!!!
Two Sig Sauer 9 millimeter weapons were stolen from the armory at the LaSalle nuclear power plant located 65 miles southwest of the City of Chicago. 
Exelon, the licensee who operates the nuclear facility, claims that the security of the site was not breached during the theft, which may imply that the person who stole the weapons is a worker at the nuclear power plant. 
Exelon has notified the LaSalle County Sheriff’s Department and officials at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission who will launch an investigation into the matter.  The NRC has dispatched a senior inspector to the plant to oversee the case. 
Officials from the power plant told reporters that the weapons were primarily used for training purposes and could have been stolen nearly a month ago, on July 27th, and may reveal why the theft was not made public earlier.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Here Comes Our Aug 24 2015 Black Monday Predicted By me Yesterday

Update Aug 25

Just saying, today's weak stock Dow (350) recovery or spring back should scare the pants off you.

Our the hedge funds going to pop and then take out our banks.


***We dodged a big one today. Maybe it will go like weeks of declines and pops of 200 to 300 point down...then the black Monday.

All bets are off if the dollar continues to decline and our economy starts indicating a decline.

***Amazing collapse in the value of the dollar today...usually it is a flight into the dollar with such worldwide market problems. This is a amazing outlier. We are at 2009 dollar levels...

Is it really a Sovereign crisis  

***Did the "Federal Reserve Board" secretly open the "Discount Window" or reduce requirements to bolster the stock market. Or some other trick?  

***Dow down 1000 points...within minutes. 1000 is about 6% while black Monday close is 22.5%  

***I am predicting a Dow and others will have a computer malfunction and shutdown the markets for hours...

***CNBC Jim Kramer says the Chinese economy has stopped or froze up...maybe in a "black hole" recession. All our stock circuit breakers have been tripped before the market even opened.  

I predicted the 2015 Black Monday yesterday at about 5 PM. This is how I framed it in light of our Korean problem. It is only gotten hardened and worst on the Korean peninsular today.

This rich people worldwide are panicking. This is how the rich people do debt repudiation world wide.
Remember, they say the Black Monday 1987 stock market collapse was initiated or made worst by the images of a burning Iranian oil rig in the Gulf seen on all our TVs on Oct 19, 1987. Is this what is in store for us tomorrow and Korean situation can only make it worst?  God only knows what other fires and explosion we will see in the coming days on our TVs and monitors. We live is such a different world today with our amazing worldwide connectivity and modern cell phones with picture and videos. 
The Futures indicate a 700 point declined...if we have a similar Chinese decline it would go down in excess of 1400 points.

The Feds are out of ammo, we have very little ammo with rate cuts. They are going to have to drop tons of hundred dollar bills by a fleet of helicopter. This is extraordinary dangerous.  This is going to scare the pants of the public and create a automatic cutback in spending. We don't know it yet, we are already in a severe recession, heading for a depression.

You watch this disaster if they have to kick up the borrowing rates in order to save the dollar.

We've had a extraordinarily and historically poor recovery post 2008 collapse...

Ron Paul in 2014(I hate him because he hates government):   
Despite rising stock prices and a falling unemployment rate, the United States is on the brink of a catastrophic "financial crisis," according to former U.S. presidential candidate Ron Paul. And the culprit could be the dollar.
"There's a huge bubble with the dollar," Paul said on Tuesday's "Futures Now." The Dollar index, which measures the dollar against a basket of other major currencies, is near 12-year highs as the Fed has retreated from its stimulative programs at just the same time that other central banks have introduced their easing measures. But rather than take the rally as a sign that investors see strength in the U.S. economy, the outspoken former congressman sees the dollar's massive move higher as simply a byproduct of a world awash in easy money.  
"It's not so much that the dollar is a great currency. It's the fact that nothing else is any better, said Paul. "The fundamentals are a disaster. The economy is in bad shape when you have more than half the people hardly making ends meet."
Paul declined to offer a catalyst or even a timeframe for when the dollar "bubble" could pop, but did warn that it does happen, it will be quick and unexpected. "Most of the time, these things are unforeseen," he said. "Did anybody warn us about 2007, 2008 in Lehman Brothers? Nobody warned us about that."
Basically our government has allowed the 1%ers to borrow money on a massive scale as a solution to our weak economy post 2008...basically today this is unparalleled debt repudiation on a massive scale by the 1%ers.  This is how the 1%ers do governmental debt repudiation...

Chinese Tanks And Troops Massing At The North Korean Boarder

Update Aug 25

***I bet you this is the guy that changed the tune of the North Koreans...

***The world is facing their "Airman First Class Spencer Stone, 23; Alek Skarlatos, 22, a specialist in the Oregon National Guard; and their friend Anthony Sadler, 23" moment on a French high speed commuter train?***

Is this ex-president Obama in tens years with North Korea: 

Jeb Bush Says Taking Down Saddam Hussein Was 'Pretty Good Deal'

So basically the Chinese economy is winding down quickly and the government is dealing with widespread corruption... 

Traditionally you'd be thinking China was massing troops and tanks on the boarder to send the west a message. More likely as a beheaded North Korea falls into chaos, China is terrified millions of North Korean refugees would flee into China. The doomsday scenario is all the North Korean evacuating into China and they having to house and feed them. It would destabilize a huge segment of China. So maybe this is a Chinese policing force as a way to mitigate the multitudes of refugees post Korean war. We would have to destroy all their roads, rails and bridges in the minor war...who is going to repair this? Can we begin to see a emerging new North Korea? 

What would N Korea look like with the majority of their government militarily beheaded and the citizens disconnected from their highly centralized government? It would look like Iraq after we took down their government and we couldn't trust the residual police or military force? How would you maintain stability post Saddam Hussein today? You would have a multi-national military police force in North Korean for some years afterward. They would be cool beyond imagination. A huge relation building project between China and the USA? An eventual reunification. Are we thinking about the reunification of Germany? Now that would be a everlasting legacy of President Obama???
It would be beyond cool if China was conspiring with the west to take down the north Korean monster and his dynasty. 

Massive military movements spotted near China-N. Korea border

Military experts see China telling North Korea to halt further inflamations of current tension

The movements of a mechanical unit at least the size of a brigade were spotted in the city of Yanji, China, in the autonomous region of Yanbian bordering North Korea. 
According to pictures released on Chinese blogs, the mechanical units of the People’s Liberation Army were composed of PTZ-89 tank destroyers (Type 89), a PGZ-95 self-propelled anti-aircraft guns (Type 95 SPAAA) and 155 mm self-propelled guns. 
Pictures were first uploaded on the China-based microblogging service Weibo around Saturday. Despite the sudden and irregular movement of troops, the Chinese government has not confirmed or officially reported on the incident yet. 
“The Chinese authorities appear to be censoring posts on the topic of the Yanji deployment by Weibo users and independent bloggers, as well as preventing media coverage of the troop movements,” said NK News China specialist Jennifer Dodgson. “Nevertheless, posts on Chinese internet forums citing overseas Chinese media reports on the matter continue to surface, including on state-owned platforms.”
“From what I know, it is not the first time they have sent units as big as this near the China–North Korea border,” said Kim Min-seok, researcher at the Korea Defense and Security Forum. “During the bombardment of Yeonpyeong in 2010 and after the purge of Jang Song Thaek in 2013, Chinese units were quickly sent to the area to prevent any unexpected surprises from the China-North Korea border.” 
Kim also said that these mechanized units have one purpose, which is “to quickly resolve the inflamed situation by marching in North Korea, if necessary.” 
PTZ-89 tank destroyers (Type 89) seen on the streets of Yanji, China. Picture originally from
PGZ-95 self-propelled anti-aircraft guns (Type 95 SPAAA) were also seen being transported by trains. Picture originally from

155 mm self-propelled guns were seen as well. Picture originally from 
“The composition of these units is aimed to achieve high mobility, high fire power and light weight compared to common mechanized units around the world. The PTZ-89 tank destroyer, despite its name, is not considered a conventional heavy tank in the terms of military equipment. They are considered light tanks and are meant to have equally high fire power as heavy tanks, with lighter armor to maximize the mobility of units. 
“China’s message is simple: Their units are focused on quickly invading North Korea as fast as they can, suppressing all opponents with the maximum fire power that Chinese mechanized units can provide,” Kim said. “Also, these light-weight mechanized units will survive North Korea’s poor road conditions, which conventional heavy tanks can’t.” 
He also noted that China’s PLA has repeatedly trained for crossing the Yalu River many times before, meaning that the Chinese Army would not find it hard to cross the river into North Korea should such an action become necessary. 
“That mechanical brigade alone is powerful enough to obliterate the border defenses of North Korea, even before they realize it is coming. But they are certainly not strong enough to stand against the ROK-U.S. joint forces.”
That mechanical brigade alone is powerful enough to obliterate the border defenses of North Korea, even before they realize it is coming. But they are certainly not strong enough to stand against the ROK-U.S. joint forces.”
‘China is sending a very simple message to North Korea’
The message, one expert said, is a reply to one the North previously sent China’s way. 
“This is no joke, China is sending a very simple message to North Korea,” said Cha Du-hyeogn, the former secretary to President Lee Myung-bak for crisis information. “Back on (Friday), North Korea publicly stated that ‘no country in the world can stop’ North Korea from further escalating the current situation, and that message was directly aimed to tackle China, for them possibly trying to interfere and disrupt the goal that North Korea was trying to achieve from these recent provocations.” 
Cha said that this movement is for demonstration purposes only, not for an actual invasion of North Korea. 
“These movements are certainly not just for enhancing the border defenses between China and North Korea. Armed police forces are responsible for the China-North Korea border, but these units have nothing to do with border defenses, nor do they belong to the armed police.” 
“But China won’t invade North Korea as it would only increase international tension. If there is one thing that China and the U.S. have in common, is that they neither one want to see North Korea become the center of an international incident,” he said. “China’s message is strong and simple: ‘Yes, we can stop you, if necessary.’”
He said, however, that this demonstration was not aimed against the U.S. or South Korea. 
“If China really wanted to send a message against South Korea and the U.S., they would have used the navy or air force as weapon of choice, as none of the countries mentioned above share a land border with China. But why would they want to agitate South Korea and the U.S. when North Korea is clearly causing mayhem for the world?” 
John Grisafi contributed to his article.

Pilgrim: Transitioning To A Low Capacity Factor Nuclear Plant

Sept 1 update
They wouldn’t let me talk to the Pilgrim inspector. Only the region public affairs guy. Nice conversation with Neil. The unistrut holding up the copper tube pulled out of the concrete with the copper tubing then falling on the main steam line. Its vibration caused the tube to crack or break.

What is a unistrut?   
Aug 27
Good job Pilgrim now at 100% power.

Aug 26
Oh brother, 24 hours and only 82% power level today? Got problems?

Aug 25

 ***Seems to be those knowledgeable with the design say there is little chance it being vibrations. Basically the steam pipes are hard attached to the concrete part of the containment. The vibrations in the main steam lines high up containment with the SRV makes sense. Although plants have had pipe attachments and restraints from the containment to the turbine repeated fail do to the vibration flow.   

What chances do you think they got of a smooth startup and return to 100% do they got. Less than 50/50?

I see Pilgrim started up last night.
Wow, we haven’t seen this all summer. The NE ISO grid price is now about $450 per megawatt hour. I can’t believe Pilgrim did this???
At 4pm it is only 83 degrees in my Hinsdale, NH area? It is 73 degrees in Boston today?   
***This just goes to show how pathetically weak the NRC is with letting Pilgrim get off the hook with prior scrams and enhanced inspections. Oh yea, the NRC fixed them with their heavy hand.   
Officials Investigating Automatic Shutdown at Pilgrim  
PLYMOUTH – An automatic reactor shutdown was triggered at the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station late Saturday. 
Plant officials, plant-owner Entergy, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission are investigating the cause of that shutdown. Officials are on-site today.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says the shutdown never created a threat to the public. It’s not clear when the plant will be back online. 
This is the third shutdown at the Plymouth plant this year. Pilgrim was under additional oversight by the NRC until the end of June as a result of the two earlier shutdowns. NRC inspectors found that the plant had addressed the areas of weakness responsible for the unplanned shutdowns during winter storms in January.

According to NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan, the NRC is continuing to review an apparent violation that was issued to Pilgrim on May 27. 
That finding involves the maintenance of the plant’s safety relief valves and stems from a special inspection conducted at the site after January’s shutdown.
I wished they disclosed what steam line the MSIV broke from. NRC event report:
REACTOR SCRAM DUE TO A SINGLE MSIV CLOSURE "On Saturday, August 22, 2015, at 1628 [EDT], with the reactor at 100% core thermal power (CTP) the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station (PNPS) experienced an automatic reactor scram signal due to the rapid closure of one main steam isolation valve (MSIV). Other than the MSIV all other plant systems responded as designed. Plant cooldown is in progress using steam bypass to the main condenser.
"The plant is in hot shutdown. The cause of the MSIV closure is still under investigation. This event has no impact on the health and safety of the public. The licensee has notified the NRC Senior Resident Inspector.
"This notification is being made in accordance with 10 CFR 50.72(b)(2)(iv)(B), 'Any event that results in actuation of the reactor protection system (RPS) when the reactor is critical'.
"Subsequent to the reactor scram the plant experienced the following isolation signals:
- Group 2 Isolation: Miscellaneous containment isolation valves
- Group 6 Isolation: Reactor Water Clean-up
- Reactor Building Isolation Actuation
"This notification is also being made in accordance with 10 CFR 50.72(b)(3)(iv)(A), 'Any event or condition that results in valid actuation of any of the systems listed in paragraph (b)(3)(iv)(B) of this section' (B)(2) 'General containment isolation signals affecting containment isolation valves in more than one system or multiple main steam isolation valves (MSIVs).'"
Plant response was considered normal and the plant is in a stable shutdown / cooldown condition. The license will be notifying the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The copper tube makes sense. The problem is, the Safety Relief Valve broke because of abnormal vibrations on the main steam line valves line. The only sense with why these safety grade small copper tubing broke is through excessive vibration.

I request an evaluation on vibrations on all main steam lines and request they install temporary vibration monitors on main steam lines before start-up to detect any abnormal main steam line vibration.

I believe I asked the NRC if Pilgrim had installed Main Steam Line Isolation Valves vibration detectors...the NRC said they didn't require it. I was shocked they didn't.

Are there any associations with broken SRVs and the failed MSIV copper tube... 
Inquiry to begin over Pilgrim nuclear plant’s ‘safe’ shutdown

David L. Ryan/Globe Staff/File

The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth went into automatic shutdown Saturday.

By Nicole Fleming Globe Correspondent August 23, 2015

The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station on Cape Cod Bay in Plymouth remains closed Sunday after going into an automatic shutdown Saturday afternoon, according to station and government officials.

“The plant is currently in a safe, stable shutdown condition and there is no impact on the health and safety of the public or plant employees,” said Lauren Burm, a spokeswoman for Entergy Corp., the company that operates Pilgrim, in a statement.

Officials for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, an independent government agency overseeing the safety of nuclear plants, reiterated Sunday afternoon that there were no safety concerns regarding the state’s only operating nuclear power station.

“There were no complications during the shutdown and no increased risks to plant workers or the public,” said Neil Sheehan, an NRC spokesman.

The reactor and associated systems were cooled down to allow for an investigation into what caused the emergency shutdown, which is also called a scram.

Nuclear reactors use steam to make electricity, operating “like a giant tea kettle, turning water into steam which spins giant turbines that power generators to make electricity,” according to an explanation on Pilgrim’s website.

The shutdown occurred at about 4:30 p.m. Saturday while the reactor was at 100 percent power, triggered by the closure of a single main steam isolation valve, Burm stated, with all other plant systems responding as designed.

‘There were no complications during the shutdown and no increased risks to plant workers.’

Neil Sheehan, Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman

The valves “would be used in the event of an accident to halt the flow of steam from the reactor to the turbine building and thereby help ‘isolate’ radioactivity to the containment building surrounding the reactor,” said Sheehan.

A copper tube about a half-inch in diameter, called an air/nitrogen line, broke, triggering the valve closure, said Chip Perkins, a nuclear engineer and the regulatory assurance manager for Entergy. While the repair of the line shouldn’t be that complicated, the plant will do an investigation into what they call “extended circumstances,” followed by other independent investigations.

“Once we find a problem, we go in and look around to see if there are any other problems like it and any other areas where we have similar conditions,” said Perkins.