Poland to embrace nuclear power

In yet another major boost for the nuclear energy sector, Poland has issued an environmental permit for the country’s first nuclear power plant.

Warsaw plans to build its first nuclear power plant on the Baltic coast by 2033. Construction is set to begin in 2026.

It is hoped that this clean energy source will allow the country to transition from coal, which  currently provides 69% of the country’s energy needs.

The Polish Nuclear Power Programme lays out plans to build up to six reactors across two or three locations that would generate around 6 to 9 gigawatts of energy – enough to power almost 8 million homes.

According to Poland’s General Directorate for Environmental Protection (GDOS), the building and operation of the plant will not adversely affect the environment and its impact will be monitored, PAP reported.

The project won’t affect Natura 2000 areas in a negative way or contribute to the deterioration of natural habitats, according to GDOS.

Poland is also one of several countries set to receive financial help from the US for new nuclear technology, with plans to build small modular reactors across the country.

“This is a milestone in the implementation of an investment that is crucial from the point of view of energy security,” Moskwa was quoted as saying.

Bechtel, the US engineering company, and Westinghouse Electric Co, which Poland earlier chose as the supplier of technology, have signed a formal agreement  to partner on the design and construction of the plant.

The US consortium and Polish utility Polskie Elektrownie Jądrowe are expected to sign an engineering services contract this week, according to Bechtel.