Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the NIA, said: I would encourage those with an interest in work across the NDA estate to register for Decom2018. I’m thrilled about the opportunity to speak at Decom 2018 as this is an exciting time for the nuclear industry, particularly the decommissioning sector. I’m looking forward to sharing my thoughts about the future of the NDA and the opportunities we have ahead of us. We are delighted that Kate Ellis is joining our impressive line-up of speakers at Decom2018 – the priorities of the NDA, and activity across the NDA estate, are vitally important for the UK’s civil nuclear supply chain so this will be an important and popular session at the Conference. Kate joined the NDA in November 2017, taking responsibility for all of the organisation’s procurement, contract management and commercial activities associated with cleaning up the UK’s civil nuclear legacy.Decom 2018 – the NIA’s first dedicated nuclear decommissioning conference – will cover themes ranging from decommissioning and hazard reduction through to waste management, attracting industry delegates from around the globe.Kate said: Decom 2018 will take place on the 18-19 June 2018 at London’s iconic County Hall. Visit https://decom2018.co.uk/ for more information.
In case you’ve been locked in your room with a broken television and no computer for the past 12 days, Michigan and Notre Dame — the two winningest programs in NCAA football history — are both 0-2. Not only that, but they will square off Saturday at Michigan Stadium, “The Big House,” meaning one team has to fall to 0-3. Imagine that. What has been even more shocking is the complete failures that former perennial powerhouses from the not-so-distant past have turned into.Teams that dominated the late ’90s and early 2000s are starting to dig themselves into deeper and deeper holes. Teams like USC, Florida and Oklahoma lose their stud players, yet remain at the top of the BCS food chain on a consistent basis. But what’s happening to the other teams that are supposed to recycle talent as well, teams that should be annual contenders but have fallen out of the Top 25? Let’s take a closer look:Notre Dame Fighting IrishCharlie Weis’ Irish have looked like a JV team scrimmaging the varsity in their first two contests — first, a 33-3 slaughtering at home to a pretty good Georgia Tech team, then another embarrassing loss to a solid Penn State team on the road. Granted, both teams are now ranked, but there’s no excuse for back-to-back performances like that. This is Notre Dame, for crying out loud!The Irish, post-Brady Quinn quarterback situation, have been a complete disaster thus far; sophomore Demetrius Jones and freshman Jimmy Clausen have looked Ryan Leaf-esque (Leaf in the NFL, not college) thus far. What happened to the ’04 and ’05 recruiting classes? The Irish have a quarterback from each class on their roster; are they really that bad? How hard could it be to recruit at least one quarterback every year to play at Notre Dame?However, Notre Dame’s quarterback play hasn’t been the most disappointing part of its short-lived season — that distinction goes to the coaching. Weis’ crew has been beaten in all facets of both games this season. That shouldn’t happen. The Irish have been outscored 64-13 in the losses. The defense has been just as abysmal as the offense, and that’s saying something considering the Irish have a total of minus-8 yards rushing on the season and have yet to score an offensive touchdown. Even if Clausen develops into the player they say he will, the Irish are still in trouble. The glory days of Joe Montana, Rocket Ismail and even Brady Quinn are starting to seem like ancient memories in South Bend. And despite a $30 million-plus contract, Chuck’s seat is starting to get uncomfortably hot.Miami Hurricanes and Florida State Seminoles”The U” just doesn’t have that same ring to it anymore, and Bobby Bowden’s Seminoles hardly strike fear into opponents. The ACC just hasn’t been the same since Willis McGahee’s knee got shattered in the 2003 Fiesta Bowl against Ohio State. With all due respect to the Wake Forest, there’s no way the Demon Deacons, with a student body of about 4,000, should ever be crowned champions of the ACC, but they were just a season ago.The ACC has lost all its credibility as a top football conference in the past few seasons, and it will remain so until the Seminoles and Canes regain their former prowess (Virginia Tech has held up its end of the bargain). The ACC and the Big East (which is merely a basketball conference at this point) are the only two major conferences that have not received an at-large BCS birth (the conference winner receives an automatic bid); the SEC, Big Ten, Big 12, and Pac-10 have combined for the other 15 bids.Again, it all comes down to recruiting — or lack thereof. You mean to tell me “The U” and FSU can’t find enough football players in the state of Florida to assemble a Top 25 football team? Even if the University of Florida fills its entire roster with the 50 top players from Florida (which isn’t the case), those other two Florida schools should be able to field a team that could compete with, say, California, who has to compete for recruits with USC, not to mention UCLA. Obviously Notre Dame isn’t stealing any high-impact players from the Sunshine State. I’m sorry, but there’s no excuse for the drop-off in these former-supreme programs. Wintry weather can’t even be an excuse, like it could be for Notre Dame or Michigan, which is still pushing it.Michigan WolverinesBig Blue’s case is a little different than the previous three. Michigan has no recruiting problems and no lack of talent. Sure, they lost defensive starters Leon Hall, Prescott Burress, LaMarr Woodley and Alan Branch to the NFL, but the trio of Chad Henne, Mario Manningham and Mike Hart should be enough to at least contend for a Big Ten Championship, if not a National Championship, let alone beat Appalachian State or Oregon at home.Much like Weis’ Irish, Michigan has one problem this season: lack of coaching. The Wolverines were completely unprepared in week one against that team from the Southern Conference and were badly out-coached once again by an average (at best) Ducks squad. There’s just no excuse in Ann Arbor. If head coach Lloyd Carr keeps his job through January it will be a miracle.And for those analysts (Bill Plaschke) who claim the Big Ten is a subpar conference, send the Ducks to Madison or Happy Valley or Columbus and see what happens, because the Wolverines no longer deserve to be mentioned in that equation.