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At the 28th Conference of the Parties to the original 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28), 22 countries signed a declaration supporting tripling nuclear energy capacity by 2050. The document was signed by the heads of state, or senior officials, from Bulgaria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Ghana, Hungary, Japan, South Korea, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, the UK and the USA. China and Russia did not sign, although they have the world’s fastest growing and most ambitious nuclear power programmes.

Date: Wednesday, 06 December 2023
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newscop28-22-countries-target-tripling-global-nuclear-energy-capacity-by-2050-11347824

The US government has rejected Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power’s (KHNP’s) report on the tender for a nuclear power plant project in the Czech Republic. This has increased concerns that Korea’s plans to boost its nuclear reactor exports may continue to be stalled by ongoing litigation with Westinghouse Electric Company.

Date: Wednesday, 12 April 2023
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsus-stalls-south-koreas-npp-export-plans-10747925

Even oil-rich companies of Middle East are eying reactors, as more nations announce plans for SMRs Russian troops occupied the Zaporizhzhia nuclear station, which was damaged by shelling. File photo courtesy IAEA. 2022 was a year of mega milestones for nuclear energy.

Countries around the world turned to nuclear as a reliable low-carbon energy source as they looked for ways to wean themselves off Russian imports and lower carbon emissions.

New plants began operating, deals for small modular reactors were signed and countries announced ambitious plans for new-build.

On the political front, US president Joe Biden signed into law new legislation that will help to finance struggling nuclear reactors and could save dozens from being shut down early. In Europe, the nuclear industry celebrated when members of the European parliament decided to “follow the science” and support legislation which includes nuclear in the bloc’s sustainable finance taxonomy for green investment.

Date: Tuesday, 10 January 2023
Original article: nucnet.org/news/five-major-developments-that-are-setting-the-stage-for-2023-and-beyond-1-1-2023

Final bids due next year and contract with winning technology provider could be finalised in 2024 The Czech Republic is planning at least one new nuclear plant at the Dukovany site. Courtesy ČEZ. France’s EDF, South Korea’s Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) and US-based group Westinghouse Electric have made initial bids to build a new reactor unit at the Czech Republic’s Dukovany nuclear power station, Czech utility ČEZ said today.

ČEZ said Elektrárna Dukovany II, the wholly owned subsidiary set up to implement the new-build project, will now analyse the bids and negotiate with the three bidders. The bidders will then submit final bids by the end of September 2023.

Majority state-owned ČEZ, which launched the Dukovany expansion tender in March, said it expects the contracts to be finalised in 2024.

The initial bids are the basis for clarifying technical and commercial parameters, but not for the actual selection or exclusion of contractors, ČEZ said. 

EDF’s reactor technology is the EPR, KHNP’s the APR-1400 and Westinghouse’s the AP1000. All three reactor types have seen commercial operation or are under construction in different countries.

Two EPRs and four AP1000s are commercially operational in China, while the APR-1400 is operated commercially in South Korea and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). 

Additionally, EPR new build projects are near completion at Olkiluoto in Finland and Flamanville in France, while construction is under way of two EPR units at Hinkley Point C in England. Two APR-1400s are in the commissioning stage and two are operating commercially at Barakah in the UAE.

ČEZ said there has been progress on preparation for the project. In 2019, the environment ministry approved an environmental impact assessment. Last year, Elektrárna Dukovany II received a siting permit from the State Office for Nuclear Safety and a generating facility authorisation from the ministry of industry and trade. The zoning procedure has begun, with the company applying to the building authority in June 2021.

Date: Thursday, 01 December 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/three-companies-submit-bids-to-build-new-nuclear-at-dukovany-11-3-2022

Global optimism ‘rising’ about potential of reactors to help achieve net zero emissions Fatih Birol (left) and Rafael Grossi at the International Atomic Energy Agency discussion on nuclear power at Cop27 in Egypt. Courtesy IAEA. Nuclear power is making “a strong comeback”, but the international financial community has so far “failed” to provide the level playing field needed for nuclear to help the world tackle its most pressing challenges, from climate change to sustainable development, International Energy Agency (IEA) executive director Fatih Birol told the Cop27 United Nations climate conference in in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

Birol told an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) discussion on nuclear power: “I don’t give them a passing grade.”

“Countries that were saying goodbye to nuclear power, they are rethinking their plans,” Birol said, adding that the IEA had been engaged in talks with both Belgium and Germany.

“We are very happy that both governments are now in the process of postponing their nuclear phaseout plans, understanding the role that nuclear plays in addressing this energy security challenge,” he said.

In addition, another group of countries is now considering extending the lifetime of their existing nuclear power reactors to respond to this challenge, which is one of the cheapest forms of low carbon power, Birol said. Still another group of countries are rolling out plans to build new reactors, including seemingly “surprising” ones such as the Netherlands and Poland as well as Japan and South Korea.

Date: Friday, 11 November 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/nuclear-making-strong-comeback-but-financial-community-has-failed-to-provide-level-playing-field-11-4-2022

Election winner wants reactors to be ‘core engine to drive country’ A 2014 file photo of construction at the Shin-Hanul nuclear power station. Courtesy KHNP. The South Korean government is reviewing whether to set up a new long-term energy plan earlier than expected after president-elect Yoon Suk-yeol said he planned to bring back nuclear power generation to the list of the country’s major energy sources.

Reports in Seoul said the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (Meti) is in talks with Mr Yoon’s transition team to establish the 4th Energy Basic Plan in the third quarter to include the energy policy of the incoming government.

South Korea has set the country’s Energy Basic Plan every five years, and the third plan was announced in June 2019. If the 4th plan is unveiled later this year, it would be set up two years earlier than the initial plan.

Outgoing president Moon Jae-in’s policy had been to retire the country’s 24 reactors, which supply about 30% of its electricity generation, and refrain from building new ones.

Date: Tuesday, 12 April 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/government-considers-new-energy-plan-after-president-elect-s-promise-to-bring-back-nuclear-4-1-2022