General meeting of Energetické Třebíčsko to start the tender of Dukovany NPP
On March 21, 2022, the General Meeting of the Energetické Třebíčsko was held, with which we successfully cooperate, and to which we were invited. As guest were attended Mr. Miloš Vystrčil, Chairman of the Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic; Mr. Tomáš Ehler, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Ministry of Industry and Trade; Mr. Petr Závodský, CEO of Dukovany II; Mr. Roman Havlín, Director of NPP Dukovany; and other invited guests. The whole discussion was moderated by Mr. Jiří Jonáš, chairman of Energetické Třebíčsko.
All guests talked about the importance of preparing Unit 5 in Dukovany. Petr Závodský then specified the details, price assumptions and general time schedule for the Dukovany NPP tender. The presentation is available here.
The statement of the chairman of the Czech Nuclear Association, Tomáš Kovalovský, is available in the article below.
Czech Nuclear Association, z.s. appreciates our mutual cooperation with Energetické Třebíčsko. We are glad that you have invited us for further discussion on the development of nuclear energy in the Czech Republic. I also congratulate the huge success in which your association played a significant role, including the support of the Vysočina Region and the surrounding municipalities and cities.
I remember the period when I was preparing a tender for Temelin NPP and later for Dukovany NPP. Among other things, I dealt with the requirements and integration of NPPs into the locality, traveled around the locality with surveyors, geologists and other professions. And since then, I have stayed in the field of energy, because it is an area that is extremely interesting.
Something to think about
I don’t want to talk for long, because time here belongs to you, members of Energetické Třebíčsko. I have been thinking for a long time what to say about this occasion. And I would like to emphasize one thing that you might ask yourself, “Everyone knows that.” But. We all take electricity for granted. We press the switch and turn on the light, we all have dishwashers, washing machines, televisions, teapots or coffee. And what is significant 73% of the energy produced is consumed by industrial production and the business sector, which contributes significantly tens of percent to GDP. Without it, our economy would not work.
I think we should all keep in mind that without electricity, we are not even able to meet our basic human needs today, such as having warm home, making tea or even fill the glass of water (90% of the planet’s fluids are pumped).
Personally, I think that electricity and energy self-sufficiency are not a matter of course. We are in a turbulent time when we face various external influences, which are numerous opportunities for near-backouts, tornadoes, various storms, or other natural influences. And today we see that the war in Ukraine is also affecting the energy sector. Over the past 14 days, we have experienced concerns about the continued operation of both besieged power plants.
In recent years, we have experienced that we can be without electricity and heat in a minute.
Reflection on the close future
I think that in the close future we have to go through a fundamental political, technical and economic debate on how to proceed the energy security.
A month ago, we were talking about building 1 or 2 cheap steam-gas units as backup sources, if necessary. But today, this option is already out from the point of view of uncertainty in ensuring a stable natural gas supply.
On the contrary, the coal that occurs in Czech Republic has already planned the end of mining and consumption for energy. And I don’t think we can avoid the question whether the impact of a tough Green Deal limits will prevent us from potentially using coal as a backup source of electricity and heat. Nevertheless, we have the technical infrastructure. It is slowly getting old, but it is functional, and it is independent on anything and anyone but it depends on ourselves.
We will be faced with the decision of whether we will have electricity, heat and a functional economy, or whether we will meet the strict limits of the Green Deal. That is why we need to again consider some ambitions and goals. This is already happening in the world. France has announced that by 2050 it will build 25 GWe of new resources worth EUR 50 billion. Belgium has announced a lifetime extension of its nuclear facilities by 10 years. Poland has announced the launch of a nuclear energy program.
I see no other way to ensure a safe supply of electricity than through nuclear and renewables. We all know the plans of the neighboring EU states on how the existing nuclear and coal resources will be phased out. And if we don’t do “something”, we will inevitably get closer to energy poverty.
Therefore, I am convinced that it is high time to discuss the the preparation of Unit 6 in Dukovany, as well as Units 3 and 4 in Temelín.
Other areas of energy
We must not forget the development of the distribution network and other support facilities. Personally, I think that we should also prepare the rear part of the fuel cycle and the deep geology repository for spent fuel and radioactive waste from decommissioning. Or negotiating more favorable conditions for the Czech Republic in the field of EU taxonomy on sustainable resources. I do not know the conclusions of the last political debate. So if we made the significant progress in this area as well, we would be able to meet the requirements of EU taxonomy. Therefore, the whole process could be more economically beneficial for us. That is why, I look forward to this year’s discussion on the core and the revision of the State Energy Concept.
But go back to the Dukovany NPP power plant. I wish all of us a lot of success and mastery of all steps. The process will certainly not be without problems.
Thank you for your attention and I wish you all a wonderful day.
Ing. Tomáš Kovalovský
Chairman of the Board
Czech Nuclear Association, z.s.