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France Broadcasts a Huge Buildup of Its Nuclear Energy Program

President Emmanuel Macron introduced the development of France’s large nuclear energy program on Thursday, pledging to construct as much as 14 next-generation reactors and a bunch of smaller nuclear crops because the nation seeks to chop scale back planet-warming emissions and reduce dependence on international power. .

The announcement represents Mr. Macron, who has beforehand pledged to cut back France’s reliance on nuclear power however has pivoted to burnish the picture of a nuclear president battling local weather change when he has to. faces a troublesome re-election in April.

“What our nation wants is the rebirth of the French nuclear trade,” Macron mentioned, talking in opposition to the backdrop of a nuclear turbine plant within the industrial metropolis of Belfort in japanese France because the Many employees and political officers gathered round. It is time for a nuclear renaissance, he added.

The nuclear power debate in Europe has taken a brand new flip as leaders pledge to avert local weather disaster and as they face a extreme power disaster that has despatched pure fuel costs down. Pure assets and electrical energy surged to report highs – partly as a result of nuclear energy manufacturing had fallen.

Mr. Macron has led a coalition of like-minded nations advocating nuclear power as an answer to speed up the push for internet zero emissions and power independence. That has opened a rift with a bunch of nations led by Germany, which is cautious of nuclear proliferation and can shut its final nuclear energy crops this 12 months, underneath a 2011 coverage. proposed by former Chancellor Angela Merkel after the nuclear catastrophe at Fukushima. , Japan.

France’s plan is to strengthen its place as Europe’s largest provider of atomic power and place the Électricité de France, or EDF, the troubled state-backed operator , aiming to compete extra aggressively with Chinese language and American firms within the rising international nuclear market. power.

With an estimated beginning worth of fifty billion euros ($57 billion), Mr Macron’s blueprint consists of constructing six mammoth next-generation pressurized water reactors at current nuclear websites. throughout France, beginning in 2028, and eight extra might be thought-about. within the 12 months 2050.

Mr. Macron mentioned France would additionally construct a prototype small modular reactor – a brand new kind of miniaturized modular nuclear energy plant – by 2030, placing the nation in competitors with a lot of nuclear energy crops. Different international locations are stepping up the know-how.

France at the moment depends on a fleet of 56 ageing nuclear reactors – essentially the most after the US, with 93 – to generate 70% of its electrical energy and export power to different international locations. However France fell out of favor because the EDF, already grappling with a protracted set of setbacks, now faces a full-blown disaster simply as Europe is in an power disaster.

This week, the corporate warned that its nuclear power output would fall to its lowest stage for the reason that Nineteen Nineties resulting from issues at a number of websites, sending European power costs to new highs. The corporate has quickly closed 10 reactors, down from 17 in December, for upkeep – together with fixing cracks present in pipelines at some crops.

The power scarcity has left France in a dilemma this winter because it has turn out to be extra depending on coal-fired energy crops, extracting electrical energy from coal from Germany and reliant on imports. pure fuel as costs skyrocketed amid the battle between Russia and Ukraine.

Whereas Mr. Macron has sought to cement his place as a European chief within the transition to a carbon-free future, France’s wind and photo voltaic capability has not been sufficient to make up for the loss. shortfall in nuclear power manufacturing cuts.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/10/world/europe/france-macron-nuclear-power.html France Broadcasts a Huge Buildup of Its Nuclear Energy Program

Fry Electronics Team

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