France bets on nuclear energy with the construction of new parks

The French Government plans to reinforce its commitment to nuclear energy with the construction of new reactors to renovate its current park, which generates around 70% of the country’s electricity, a project that could enter into service in the 2035-2037 horizon. The calendar was given this Thursday by the Secretary of State for the Ecological Transition, Bérangère Abba, who in a debate with senators on nuclear safety advanced that the Executive contemplates the presentation of the first construction projects in 2023.

Abba noted that the state electric company EDF has already submitted to the Authority for Nuclear Safety (ASN) reports on safety criteria of a reactor that would be an evolution of the one that is being finalized at the nuclear power plant. Flamanville, on the Normandy coast, of the EPR (European Pressurized Reactor) type, and which has received an approval in principle. The construction period of the Flamanville EPR has suffered continuous delays (It has been 14 years old and its entry into service is not expected until 2023). In addition, their costs have multiplied from 3,400 million euros initially budgeted to the close to 20,000 million that are currently calculated.

The French President, Emmanuel Macron, announced in early November its intention to build new atomic reactors, in support of the development of renewables, to respond to needs of the energy transition. Since then, it was expected that he would specify his intentions, but the management of the coronavirus crisis, with the irruption of omicron, has displaced the prioritiess of the head of state. EDF, for its part, has made a proposal to the State (its main shareholder, with an 84% stake) to build six new generation EPRs with an estimated cost of about 50,000 euros.

Its CEO, Jean-Bernard Lévy, claimed last Tuesday to the Government that make decisions about your commitment for the renovation of the nuclear park. A renovation that could benefit from the controversial proposal of the European Commission to include nuclear energy (and also gas) within the “green” energy taxonomy next to renewables. A taxonomy that seeks, among other objectives, to orient investments to the energy transition.

Source: LA INFORMACIÓN – Lo último by

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