SN Nuclearelectrica SA announces that within the General Meeting of Shareholders convened for February 23, 2022, SNN shareholders approved the investment decision for Cernavoda NPP Unit 1 Refurbishment Project.
CANDU reactors have an initial lifespan of 30 years. Following a refurbishmernt process, this lifespan can be extended with additional 30 years, which is what Nuclearelectrica currently undergoes with Unit 1, which was commissioned in 1996.
„The Refurbishment of Unit 1 is a project for which Nuclearelectrica team has been constantly working since 2017, in compliance with the completion timetable. It is a strategic project for Romania and for reaching the decarbonization targets. The Refurbishment of Unit 1 means additional 30 years of operation under maximum nuclear safety conditions, after 2029, at less than half of the cost of nuclear new build. Lifetime extension of nuclear units has the lowest levalized cost of energy of all energy sources, renewables included. In the context of energy transion and decarbonization, it also means additional 30 years of operation without CO2 emmissions, a total a approximately 150 million tons of CO2 avoided.
Once with the approval of the investment decision, we move on to the second phase of the project namely the assurance of financial resources for the unfolding of Unit 1 Refurbishment, preparedness of execution of the identified and defined activities during phase 1 and obtaing all the necessary approvals and permits to unfold the project. I thank and congratulate all my colleagues involved in the Refurbishment of Unit 1 Project”- Cosmin Ghita, Chief Executive Office, SN Nuclearelectrica SA
The investment decision was approved based on the Feasibility Study and Scenario no. 2, „enhanced safety”, considered optimum by SN Nuclearelectrica. The version approved by SNN shareholders includes design changes which additionaly provide, in comparison to Scenario no. 1, the enhancement of nuclear safety margins of the power plant and take into consideration the new tendencies to increase the robustness from a nuclear safety standpoint.
The currrent cost for the implementation of Scenario no. 2 is approximately 1,85 billion Euro without the financing cost and inflation rate update at the date Unit 1 Refurbishment contract will be signed.
„CNE Cernavoda has 25 years of nuclear operation expertise, highly qualified personnel, and the Refurbishment Project of Unit 1 capitalizes on this expertise. The Refurbishment team is ready to initiate and unfold the second phasse of the project. The Refurbishment of a nuclear unit is a very complex process, similar to new build, but one which offers net environmental and financial advantages, also adding security of supply, availability and stability”- Sorin Ghelbereu, Strategic Projects Manager, Cernavoda NPP.
„We are in process to form a new generation of nuclear specialists, we have hired for this project 100 people in 2021, who will be part of the organizational structure of the project during the second phase and who will benefit from training as per the nuclear standards. Part of the newly hired will be sent for on the job training to Canadian nuclear power plants which have already experienced refurbishments processes.
Also, considering all our strategic projects, we unfold an ample program to recrut and train a new generation of nuclear specialists. Last year we recruited 500 colleagues, and for this year we plan a similar number”- Cosmin Ghita, Chief Executive Officer, SN Nuclearelectrica SA.
The second phase, 2022-2026, which starts once with the approval of the investment decision includes the assurance of the financial resources, preparedness of the execution of the identified and defined activities during phasse 1 for the refurbishment of Unit 1 and obtaining all the necessary approvals and permits to unfold the project, phase which will last until the end of 2026.
Phase 3, 2027-2029, will start once with the shutdown of Unit 1 and consists in the effective unfolding of Unit 1 Refurbishment workings, inside the Unit’s intallation, as well as in its commissioning for a new operation cycle of 30 years, after 2029.