Unit 1 of Cernavoda nuclear power plant will be subject to environmental impact assessment for the extension of life, according to the decision taken by the Implementation Committee of the Espoo Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context.
The measure covers all nuclear power plants in Europe that exceed their lifetime and will be applied before renewing licenses. The decision comes amid extending the life of nuclear reactors 1 and 2 of the plant in Rivne, Ukraine.
Renewal of licenses allow nuclear plants to extend the life of 30 years for another 10 years.
Environmental impact is one of the aspects that make nuclear power does not represent a sustainable energy solution. On the other hand, the hidden costs of decommissioning reactors and waste disposal are huge. Before we think of extending the life of existing reactors and build new ones, should be considered truly sustainable solutions, such as energy efficiency and renewable energy, "said Lavinia Andrei, president of the Foundation TERRA millennium.
Unit 1 of the Cernavoda nuclear power plant went into operation in 1996 and will operate with maximum current license until 2026. Given that more and more European countries plans to abandon nuclear power, Romania seeks investors for units 3 and 4 of the Cernavoda and a new deposit of radioactive waste to be built at Saligny, with a total investment of over 400 million.
Following the decision of the Implementation Committee of the Espoo Convention, 60 nuclear reactors that have exceeded their life in Europe will be subject to environmental assessment in the next three years.
According to Greenpeace, the Cernavoda CANDU reactors are designed for a lifetime of 25 years, and this means that in eight years, one of the Cernavoda reactor should already closed.
In view of that most of the reactors are built before reaching the end of its life for which they were designed, and some of them are even exceeded the time, and also extends the life of the reactor required to bring significant improvements Romanian state should consider the fact that one reactor at Cernavoda will complete its life cycle in no more than 8 years now. Due to the extremely high costs involved in decommissioning a nuclear reactor should be thinking ahead and included this project in the energy strategy. This should be taken into account, more so as to extend the operation of CANDU reactors involves some cost and higher, making the operation of economically unprofitable, "says Alexandru Riza, coordinator of Greenpeace campaigns Romania.