Uranium Issue - Aussie Stock Forums

Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Uranium Issue

  1. #1

    Default Uranium Issue

    hi people

    just wondering what you think about the selling of uranium to china and other countries. also what you think about the production of uranium and what problems it could cause.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    I hate to use this argument but if you Aussies don't sell it to China, someone else will.
    If I detect a scent of tree-hugger here, get a life. There is pollution and danger in anything. People will accept abatement but only up to a point.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Suffice to say that I wouldn't want to be in the position of being the dominant holder of it in an energy starved world. Ask someone in Iraq (significant undeveloped oil reserves) or Iran (more gas than anyone except Russia and it's mostly undeveloped) about this if you're in any doubt about the risks of leaving large supplies of a scarce commodity in the ground.

    Australia has a far greater share of world uranium reserves (up to 40% depending on which estimates you use) than Iraq has oil (estimates vary but somewhere around 10% seems likely) or Iran has gas (about 15%). In an increasingly energy starved world there's a military risk in NOT mining uranium IMO.

    I think we're going to be mining uranium either way. The only question is whether we do it now voluntarily and sell it at a profit or end up like those trying to leave their oil and/or gas in the ground.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Well said chaps,

    I agree, we should seriously capitalise on this boom and turn the Uranium into fuel rods, not just give them (ie China India) the Raw U3O8,

    Why do we always give raw materials away, we never want to value add,

    Austrlia has to change its mentality and really step up, every year we lose more ground on a global basis, while previously percieved 'backward' nations such as China and India show us how its done, on a global scale we are a joke and now we have a chance to do something about,

    I think Australia should become to the world for uranium, what the middle east is for oil voluntarily cause like it or not Uranium is the only medium term solution (its not long term) but just until we get renewable fuels to a level where they can in a cost effective way take over
    Note: I am not a Financial Adviser, nor are any of my posts intended to be financial advice, they merely express my own opinions

  5. #5

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Agreed there. We should be value adding to our commodities wherever possible. It's a fact that we sell them, someone else buys and THEY value add and make a profit doing so. It's unrealistic to export everything as finished manufactured goods but selling aluminium rather than bauxite, paper rather than wood etc makes a lot of sense IMO.

    Japan, a high wage country, buys our woodchips and makes paper. I just can't believe we couldn't be doing that profitably here.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Hey Dudes... I'm actually an architecture student at RMIT and one of the subjects we study is called ESD. This is Environmentally Sustainable Design... What does it mean?! Well we study the effects of polution in the world and after watching 4 corners heaps, Uranium is the only solution to Solve the effects of Global warming and Global Dimming. Global warming causes all the abrupt weather patterns in the globe (The damage caused by fossil fuels is greater than the disposal of urnaium. In theorey we should be paying 5 dollars a litre of petrol) and global dimming is responsible for the droughts causing starvation in african nations (Due to European Pollution).

    The common thing about all tree huggers with the issue of Uranium is that they complain and winge with out offering a solution... I have and its Uranium... I see Uranium as a long term Investment... Its easy to manage and its effeicient... personally I can't wait to see the extreme heat of summer hit the northern hemesphere... It'll bring up some good debate.

    I hope that the Australian government can see how we can be the world leaders in this industry. Something tells me that the government will lift the bans off New mines soon so we can cash in...

  7. #7

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    If the coal industry can find an economic way to capture CO2 emissions from conventional power stations then that would represent a pretty big shift in the whole electricity generation industry. Nuclear would then have a serious universal (as opposed to hydro which is location dependent and gas which is increasingly too highly valued in $ terms for baseload power generation) competitor which produces minimal emissions.

    There's some serious work underway investigating the possibility of CO2 capture and liquefaction at Callide A power station in Queensland. Whilst the proposed unit retrofit is relatively small (the retrofitted 30 MW unit (one of 4 such units at Callide A) could realistically produce no more than 0.5% of Queensland's electricity) the technology could be applied to the other 3 units at Callide A and of course every other coal-fired power station in Queensland and elsewhere. If it captures 90% of the CO2 as intended then that pretty much fixes the greenhouse problem as far as electricity generation is concerned.

    The great benefit of this approach is that it could be applied to existing power plants rather than needing to build completely new power stations (power plants don't come cheap). The vast majority of coal-fired generating capacity in Australia will be in operation for at least another 20 years, much of it considerably longer than that, so such an approach ought to be a winner in economic terms. The USA, NZ, UK, Japan, China and many others also have large coal-fired plants with several decades of remaining life. And all of these countries are needing to either build new generating capacity or shift fuels (away from depleting gas sources or expensive oil) in the next few years.

    There's also the question about using alternative nuclear sources for power generation. Thorium is far more abundant than uranium, doesn't react without being constantly "pushed" (so it can't blow up no matter what goes wrong), doesn't involve the production of materials suitable for use in nuclear weapons and the waste is hazardous for about 500 years (versus many thousands of years for conventional reactor waste). Indeed the reason the industry went with uranium in the first place was the ability to produce weapons grade fissile material in the reactors (political decision in the 1950's).

    So whilst it's clearly booming now I'll be watching the fundamentals closely. Uranium could end up being about as useful as sand in a desert if coal-fired CO2 capture and/or thorium turns out to be a goer (a lot of vested interests against the latter though).

    In the Australian domestic context there's also the question of large scale geothermal energy in SA. If it's a goer then, combined with existing and some new hydro (critical due to production flexibility) plus the necessary transmission lines, the combined geothermal / hydro system could supply the entire power requirements of SA, Vic, NSW and Tas quite easily and probably much cheaper than nuclear. It's certainly somewhat safer and leaves the uranium available for export so makes economic sense too. Existing fossil fuel plants would be retained until the end of their useful lives for both economic and practical reasons (time and $ to build up the geothermal industry and expand hydro - a couple of decades at least).

    Given that the political possibility of building a domestic nuclear power plant in Queensland is virtually zero (how, exactly, does one explain that to the world whilst also trying to sell coal as preferable to nuclear...) that leaves no viable market for nuclear power in Australia. The NT is far too small in terms of power use and WA is also too small. And WA has literally just started building a new coal-fired plant.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    I remember reading in a scientific mag, maybe New Scientist or something similar, that the boss of Greenpeace admits the ONLY thing to stop greenhouse gasses at the moment is nuclear energy. In the same article it states its technologically impossible the accidents of yesteryear to happen again.

    I think uranium is the way to go, unless we can ultimately use hydrogen to power everything

  9. #9

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Nuclear is the way of the future plus its funding my investing big time as i work in Mining and Minerals industry here in Perth

    If your ever interested read into Cheynobel. A disaster such as this would never happen in Australia and Other power sources such as Wind or Hydro will never be regular energy sources.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Cheynobel might never happen in Australia but I am not too sure I will never happen in country like India or China.
    What are the hot mining stocks discussed in Perth ?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Remember i'm not an expert but i wouldn't expect BHP or RIO to go down. Worely Parsons seem to be a company here atm thats a real mover and desperate for any skilled employee who can help with its huge workload. Oil also has a big future in WA in the next decade.

    cheers lads.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    its funny how people say uranium is so dangerous. dont get me wrong it is however more people die every year of car accidents then of uranium disasters. uranium is the way of the future!!!

  13. #13

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Treasurer
    If your ever interested read into Cheynobel. A disaster such as this would never happen in Australia and Other power sources such as Wind or Hydro will never be regular energy sources.
    Hydro generates more electricity worldwide than nuclear and does so with in most cases higher plant availability (ie reliability) than nuclear or fossil fuel power. Indeed hydro is the second largest source of electricity worldwide after coal and absolutely the most flexible in terms of dispatch to the point of being the only source able to efficiently "smooth out" the fluctuating production from other sources and the demands of consumers, a role for which it is widely used.

    Approximately one third of world hydro-electric potential has been developed so far. In Australia, there is sufficient undeveloped hydro within reach of the "national" grid to generate about 1000 MW continuous output - a single nuclear reactor would average around 600 MW given the significant level of non-availability to run (assumed 800MW reactor). Hydro is thus an alternative to one or possibly two nuclear reactors in the Australian context. This undeveloped hydro power is located in, in order of importance, Tasmania, Queensland, NSW, Vic. There is also a modest amount in the NT and WA although they are not part of the national grid.

    Moorina hydro-electric power station in Tasmania will reach 100 years of operation this year and the state has 7 (of 30 now in operation) hydro power stations over 50 years old which, with the exception of the small Lake Margaret plant (built in 1914 with wood because steel was unaffordable at the time - the wood is now rotting and the plant will soon close) are still in good working order producing as much, and in some cases more, power than when new. In 100 years time the uranium industry is likely to be nothing more than a liability of abandoned plants and waste storage sites.

    I'm not against nuclear but it must be kept in perspective. It's inferior in practically every way to hydro as are fossil fuel power sources. Hydro and geothermal are both so simple that, with proper design and operation, failure is unlikely.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    hydro power has high set up costs and maintnence costs though. nuclear is more efficient then hydro

  15. #15

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    Acknowledged that the set up costs of hydro are relatively high. Depending on the actual site, they are in the order of double those of nuclear. However it is the total cost of electricity generated, rather than the capital cost of the plant, which is ultimately the critical factor. This depends heavily on interest rates and operation and maintenance costs of the power plant.

    In broad terms operation and maintenance costs are the inverse of capital costs. Hydro operation and maintenance costs are about 5% of the total cost (ie original construction is 95% of the lifetime cost thus hydro is a near-perfect inflation hedge). Nuclear operation costs are dramatically higher than hydro. About $1.80 per MWh for hydro (typical figure in Tasmania) versus about $17 per MWh for nuclear (typical US O&M costs). Typical coal-fired O&M costs are about $15-$18 per MWh in Australia with gas-fired plant ranging from around $20 to $30 for high load factor plant.

    Different power sources have different economic advantages. Hydro and to a lesser extent nuclear capital-intensive but substantially insulated (almost completely in the case of hydro) from post-construction inflation. Likewise coal where fuel is only about 40% of total costs. Such plants are best built when bond yields are low and become very profitable once inflation picks up.

    The point here is, of course, that we are moving away from the time when it makes sense to develop in particular hydro or nuclear power in favour of it making more economic sense to pursue gas or coal despite rising fuel costs. This is a virtual repeat of the 1970's where well established nuclear, coal and hydro construction programs became almost universally uneconomic in the face of rapidly rising oil prices and were generally abandoned in the 1980's. This was the experience in the USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand and other countries.

    Just a word of caution really. Nuclear isn't the great solution that many perceive it to be. Indeed a commodities boom doesn't even necessarily make it economic at all if interest rates also rise. That, by the way, is one of the things which underpins the entire energy boom - alternative energy costs rise along with the costs of oil. Sure, there is a uranium boom but that doesn't necessarily translate into a nuclear power boom that actually displaces other energy sources.

  16. #16

    Wink Re: Uranium Issue

    It's very interesting to see those prices per Mwh, provided by smurf, on the different resources and how coal is significantly cheaper than nuclear... However, I don't mean to chase the tail but, the one cost that is not included is the environmental cost coal and particularly brown coal produces... that single cost effectively cancels the difference between the two resource. C'mon pumping the emmissions into the ground, how's that for inefficiency...

  17. #17

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    here are some pros and cons that i found on a website.


    - Greenhouse gases from nuclear power are about 12 times less than gas power stations and about 30 times less than coal stations

    - Australia has a large percentage of the world's high grade uranium ore that could service a domestic market

    - Australia could reap billions of export dollars if uranium mining was expanded


    - Nuclear power is not a renewable source of energy. High-grade, low-cost ores will run out in 50 years

    - It is not "greenhouse gas" free, producing more emissions than some renewable power sources such as wind

    - It would take at least 10 years and several billion dollars to build Australia's first nuclear power station

    - Plants are potential targets for terrorists attacks; smuggling of radioactive material is on the rise; no complete solution to the disposal of radioactive waste has been found

  18. #18

    Default Re: Uranium Issue

    The only thing that's going to impress Mr & Mrs Sixpack is this:

    Here is an interesting bit of info taken from a Deep Yellow presentation:

    Electricity Production
    Energy Source Electricity Produced
    • 1 kg Firewood 1 kWh
    • 1 kg Coal 3 kWh
    • 1 kg Oil 4 kWh
    • 1 kg Uranium 50,000 kWh

    that dear people say's it all

    cheers laurie

Similar Threads

  1. NTU - Northern Minerals
    By YOUNG_TRADER in forum Stocks I-P
    Replies: 195
    Last Post: 15th-August-2012, 11:35 AM
  2. Uranium
    By crackaton in forum Commodities
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 20th-October-2007, 08:35 PM
  3. Cameco - No cigar for uranium buyers?
    By 56gsa in forum Commodities
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 24th-July-2007, 11:24 AM
  4. Labor lifts uranium ban!
    By 56gsa in forum ASX Stock Chat
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 29th-April-2007, 08:16 PM
  5. Help: Looking for 3 Uranium Stocks
    By Marky1117 in forum ASX Stock Chat
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 24th-April-2006, 07:44 PM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Aussie Stock Forums