When will the Czech Republic wake up from dreams of nuclear reactors?

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=> CZECH version of this article

When will the Czech Republic wake up from dreams of nuclear reactors?

The Czech Republic's energy security requires a new energy policy with an emphasis on the still untapped potential of energy efficiency and the necessary continuation of the development of renewable energy sources. The fulfillment of a number of obligations of today's rapidly obsolete State Energy Policy has been delayed for years. The fundamental deficiency of plans for building new reactors is the high investment costs – direct/indirect and current/future.

Government materials (such as the National Action Plan for the Development of Nuclear Energy in the Czech Republic) purposefully underestimate the investment costs of the planned Czech reactors, when they indicate a value of 5,230 € / kW (excluding the cost of credit). The reality points to a comparison with other current projects in Western Europe; Hinkley Point C in UK (reactor EPR from the Framatom company, formerly Areva): 6,395 € / kW; Flamanville in France (also reactor EPR from Framatom, formerly Areva): 6,560 € / kW or Vogtle 3.4 in the U.S. (reactor AP1000 from the Westinghouse company): 6,950 € / kW. In addition to direct investments, it is necessary to draw attention to billions of Czech crowns hidden in the budget of the Czech Power Transmission Network (ČEPS) for the strengthening of transmission networks, in the budget of the Ministry of Transport for transport communications to allow the import of reactor vessels or steam generators from abroad to the power plant in the Czech Republic, and in an indirect subsidy for operators of nuclear power plants in the Czech Republic in a form of a very limited liability for a possible nuclear accident. A separate chapter consists of money for liquidation of the radioactive power plant after the end of operation and for the construction and operation of a deep geological repository of spent nuclear fuel and other high-level waste. Financial levy that CEZ sends to the nuclear account today is not enough to cover future planned costs in excess of CZK 110 billion. And it is very uncertain whether the money deposited by the operator on the reserve account for liquidation of the power plant will cover the real future requirements.

Edvard Sequens, Energy Consultant of Calla – Association for Preservation of the Environment, said: "Just betting on the Nuclear Energy Development Card is literally pretty expensive for us. Our politicians still seem to be looking in the rearview mirror and wanting to address the challenges of the twenty-first century by the tools used in the past. We need a courageous, modern energy policy that will not make us an isolated open-air energy museum in the centre of Europe."


Read the press release of January 31, 2018



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