En 2009, the French nuclear industry suffered a snub in Abu Dhabi, when the emirate chose the South Korean KHNP for the construction of four reactors. And now she has just suffered yet another double failure. . “We confirm that our nuclear power project will use reliable and safe technology from @WECNuclear”, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced on Friday, October 28, on Twitter. Three days later, Warsaw and Seoul initialed a “letter of intent” on the subsequent construction of another power station, in the center of the country, by the KHNP consortium.
The Westinghouse plant (3,000 megawatts; MW), installed near the Baltic Sea, in the village of Choczewo, should enter service in 2033, if the construction schedule is kept. Three other reactors are planned on this site, and it is hard to see the American group losing this new call for tenders: the feedback from the first units makes it possible to improve the construction of the following ones, the series effect reduces the costs, and a standardized fleet facilitates maintenance.
All these reactors are part of a program of 6,000 MW to 9,000 MW, estimated at 40 billion euros. In the country of coal king, which still depends on it for 70% of its electricity, it is urgent to decarbonize the economy to reach, in 2050, the European objective of net zero CO2 emissions.2. But it is equally imperative to ensure the long-term security of its energy supplies, more vital than ever since the invasion of Ukraine by Russia on February 24.
It is not surprising that several American leaders first underlined the political dimension of this choice, like the Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, on October 29: “The United States is proud to be Poland’s strong energy and security partner. » They want to ensure “interdependent security for decades to come”thanks to their nuclear and their liquefied natural gas (LNG) – even if part of the uranium of the American power stations is always enriched by the Russian Rosatom.
Defense of energy and plain defense become one: buy American “sends a clear message to Russia that the Atlantic Alliance is united in (…) resist the Russian militarization of energy »US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm said on Friday. Choosing Westinghouse power plants, ExxonMobil LNG and Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter planes is the same thing. The “made in America” has become “America first”, for the greater benefit of its industry.
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