Nuclear power plant investment reaches key milestone

6/30/20 10:44 AM
János Süli and the management of Paks II. Ltd. announced the submission of the implementation license application first to the mayors of the region.

The mayors of forty-seven settlements and Members of Parliament of the Paks Social Council were invited to the meeting, where János Süli, the minister without portfolio responsible for the planning, construction and commissioning of the two new units of the Paks Nuclear Power Plant, provided information on the scheduled submission of the implementation license application. 

„The documentation submitted today details how the units planned for Paks meet every Hungarian and European Union regulation and safety requirements”, said minister János Süli at the meeting held in Paks on 30 June. Regarding the details, he said the VVER-1200 unit developed by Rosatom is an advanced 3rd generation unit type, and safety enhancement was a key objective of its design. Safety is guaranteed by active safety systems, which require energy supply, as well as passive safety systems that can perform their function without energy supply or human intervention. Engineers used several technical solutions that are novel for PWR units. Examples include the double-walled containment that can withstand a direct hit by an airplane and a core catcher. 

The minister added that Paks II. Ltd. submitted a complex, 283,000-page documentation to the Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority. The documents were received electronically by the authority. To demonstrate the scope, he said that if they had been traditionally arranged in ring binders, stacked on top of each other, the documents would have been taller than a ten-story house, and if laid side by side, would cover 42 basketball courts. 

The mayors of the region were also informed that the competent authority has 12 months to carry out the inspection, with a possible extension of 3 months. The Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority will also involve international experts via the International Atomic Energy Agency in its investigation. “During this time, the contact with the Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority will remain intensive, as the authority may request additional data and information from the project company during the evaluation,” the minister added. 

János Süli also pointed out that work at the construction and erection base is continuous: the transformer station has been completed, two office buildings for the Owner and the Contractor, as well as a kitchen and dining room for 100 people are structurally complete. Construction of the Power Plant Investment Centre in the immediate vicinity of the site of the new units will also start soon. In addition, the site preparation work is progressing well, and MVM Paks Nuclear Power Plant Ltd. will hand over the area of the new units to the project company. János Süli reminded that according to the decision of the European Commission, the company can apply for commencement of the groundworks three months after the submission of the implementation license application. Groundworks can thus start in early 2021, after obtaining a license for pre-construction site preparation. The company is expected to receive the license for the construction of the main building in September 2021, after which construction work may begin. 

„The construction of the two new units is a serious opportunity for the region, a lot of related investments will be made: roads, apartments, factory halls will have to be built, improvements will be implemented in the areas of healthcare, education and many other services. In connection with the investment, we will also implement a complex, coordinated regional development program in order to develop the region”, emphasised János Süli.

At the meeting, Communications Director István Mittler announced that the company will soon start a series of forums at the settlements in the area so that residents can get first-hand information about the project. To the same end, an information leaflet on the project and the implementation license application will be sent to all households of the nearly fifty settlements. The electronic version of the comprehensible summary of the implementation license application and the public information brochure are available on the website of Paks II. Ltd.