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November 27, 2021

Extra security measures hike nuclear energy price

In this sense, Ionel Bucur, general manager of the Cernavoda nuclear power plant (CNE), stated yesterday for Mediafax that the price of nuclear energy will rise if operators are forced to invest in extra security measures. He was unable to estimate how large these measures’ impact will be. On the other hand, Marian Serban, director within CNE, stated that a possible energy price hike “is uncertain,” considering that the price of nuclear fuel dropped following the events in Fukushima. Cernavoda nuclear power plant’s two operational reactors use nuclear fuel produced in Romania and cover approximately 20 per cent of Romania’s electricity needs.

After Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant was damaged, the European Commission and the EU member states’ governments decided to verify the safety of the EU’s 143 nuclear reactors by conducting stress tests, an operation meant to result in operational standards for each nuclear reactor. At the same time, CNE representatives pointed out that the nuclear power plant operates safely in what concerns the environment and the population and the procurement of spare parts respected the legislation, thus dismissing the information according to which CNE bought spare parts from a Romanian company that lacked the expertise and that was chosen at the expense of a German company qualified in this domain. “The Cernavoda nuclear power plant is capable to respond to events such as the ones in Fukushima, but a tsunami is out of the question here. We may have floods, blizzards, storms. (…) The plant’s stability has been verified, our capacity to safely operate it has been checked by international missions, the last of which came in November 2010,” Ionel Bucur, general manager of CNE Cernavoda, added.

Sorin Ghelbereu, CNE technical director, stated that the German company was disqualified from the tender because it claimed it could not fully observe the technical requirements and asked for derogations.
In his turn, President Traian Basescu stated on Tuesday that he talked with Gheorghe Marmureanu, director of the Geophysics Institute, adding that there is no risk of an earthquake affecting Cernavoda nuclear power plant’s reactors.

On the other hand, Economy Minister Ion Ariton decided to establish a commission to analyze CNE Cernavoda’s capacity to react in case of major unpredictable events. 30 days after its establishment the commission will present a report detailing its conclusions.

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