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[cdn-nucl-l] New Finnish NPP?
I worked as a summer student at the Russian-built Loviisa VVERs, in 1987. I
was impressed then by the evident competence and pride the Finns have in
running their NPPs. Since then I have followed the Finnish nuclear
performance with interest. They have two VVERs, recently uprated from 465
to 510 MWe, and two Swedish-built 870 MWe BWRs. Finland continues to be the
top performing country (of countries with four or more power reactors).
TVO-1, TVO-2, Loviisa-2 and Loviisa-1 rank as 4th, 6th, 7th and 24th of 376
power reactors in the Nuclear Eng Int'l stats to the end of June 2000. The
cumulative load factors (since commercial operation) are 88.2, 87.6, 87.6
and 84.6%, respectively. The reactors are from 19 to 23 years old.
It is interesting to see the latest proposal to build another reactor in
Wednesday November 15
Finnish TVO applies for new nuclear plant permission
(UPDATE: adds comments from TVO, background)
By Anna Peltola
HELSINKI, Nov 15 (Reuters) - Finnish power group Teollisuuden Voima (TVO)
said on Wednesday it had submitted an application to the Finnish government
for a fifth nuclear power plant to be built in the country.
Construction costs for the new station were estimated at between 10-15
billion markka ($1.4-2.2 billion), a TVO spokesman told Reuters.
Timo Rajala, chairman of TVO and chief executive of its biggest owner
Pohjolan Voima, said TVO decided to come forward with an application because
parliamentarians are due to discuss general climate policy next spring.
``Now is the political moment when these issues are discussed,'' Rajala
said, adding the group wanted to point out its own view on how the problem
of accelerated energy use could be solved.
Mauno Katka, senior adviser at TVO, said that the proposed plant's
electricity generation capacity would be 1,000-1,600 megawatts, with annual
output seen at some 8-12 terawatt hours.
The new plant, if accepted, would be ready in 2008-2010, and by then,
Finland's annual electricity use would have risen to 91 terawatts from 80
terawatts in 1999, he said.
Nuclear power is currently the biggest source of electricity in Finland,
accounting for some 28 percent of total consumption, but a fifth reactor
would up the share of nuclear power in total consumption to 35 percent,
around the EU average, Katka said.
The central power agency Finergy said Finland could not rely on electricity
imports in the future and that a fifth plant was needed if Finland was to
reduce its greenhouse gas emissions as required by the Kyoto protocol.
Rajala said the planned project would be funded by TVO's and Pohjolan
Voima's own financing, with the other shareholders only paying for the
electricity the plant would generate.
``The financing is not a big deal,'' he said.
TVO's main owners are energy group Fortum and Pohjolan Voima, whose biggest
shareholders are forestry groups UPM-Kymmene and Stora Enso as well as
Stora Enso has said it will sell its TVO stake.
LONG, HARD NUCLEAR DEBATE EXPECTED
The fate of the proposal is now uncertain, but a lengthy discussion expected
to cause strains both between and inside parties is likely to last for at
least a year.
The five-party government coalition, which includes the anti-nuclear Green
Party, will now examine the proposal and either pass it on to parliament or
If passed to parliament, the proposal would most likely be voted on, with a
split seen inside parties as parliamentarians would not be obliged to follow
a general party line.
The Greens have earlier said they would withdraw from government if
parliament grants permission for another nuclear plant to be built.
Many politicians have said if the proposal is not now accepted, it could be
the death knell for future reactor applications.
The industry's last attempt for more nuclear power was in March 1986, when
an application was issued by group formed by Imatran Voima -- now part of
Fortum -- and TVO, but it was put on ice following the Chernobyl catastrophe
the following month.
After a lengthy debate, the parliament finally voted on a fifth nuclear
plant in September 1993, with opponents of the plan winning the vote 107-90