حفلة 2024

EDF Energy to prolong U.K. nuclear plants’ lifespan

Britain’s biggest generator of zero-carbon electricity, EDF Energy, announced on Tuesday that it plans to prolong the lifespan of its nuclear plants in the U.K.

The company will invest an additional £1.3 billion ($1.7 billion) in its operational U.K. nuclear fleet to maintain the current output levels and ensure energy security.

France, Belgium, and Sweden, among other European countries, have declared their intentions to prolong the service of their old nuclear reactors, in response to concerns about potential power shortages in the coming years.

EDF has expressed its intention to extend the operation of four advanced gas-cooled reactor (AGR) plants: Torness, Heysham 1 and 2, and Hartlepool. This plan is contingent on regulatory approval, and EDF will decide on it by the end of this year.

Currently, it is evaluating the possibility of operating its Sizewell B plant, a pressurised water reactor with a capacity of 1.2 gigawatts (GW), for an additional 20 years beyond its planned schedule.

The company plans to make a final investment decision on this matter next year, emphasising the need for a viable commercial model. With the additional funding announced on Tuesday, EDF’s investment in its U.K. nuclear fleet will have reached 9 billion pounds since 2009.

“Looking ahead, our aim is to maintain the output of the four AGR stations for as long as possible and extend Sizewell B by a further 20 years out to 2055,” stated the managing director of EDF’s nuclear operations business, Mark Hartley.

Constructing a new nuclear plant can require billions of euros and span decades, however, extending the lifespan of an existing plant is a more cost-effective option that can be implemented gradually.

 

 

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