The statement issued by the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority of Finland (STUK) on 25 February that the operation of OL3 EPR will be safe played an important part in the Government’s decision. STUK assessed in its statement that, in addition to the technical and structural safety of the plant, TVO’s organisation and employees have the capabilities required for the safe operation of the plant and the management of the whole life cycle of nuclear power, including nuclear waste management.
The operating licence is always granted to a nuclear power plant as a fixed-term licence. The licence that was now granted to TVO is valid till the end of the year 2038, as requested in the application.
- This is a historical decision, no doubt. The last time an operating licence was granted for a new nuclear power plant in Finland was 1979, says Jarmo Tanhua, the President and CEO of TVO.
- This decision is for us significant acknowledgement of the work we do and the expertise we possess in Olkiluoto. It has been a long project. The operating licence is an important step towards the start of electricity production and us fulfilling the expectations that were set to the construction decision back in the time, concerning the security of electricity supply in Finland as well as the reduction of emissions and dependence on importation, Mr. Tanhua continues.
Marjo Mustonen, Senior Vice President, Electricity Production, emphasises the significance of OL3 EPR as an action of huge dimensions for the climate and as part of it, TVO’s capabilities in the management of the whole life cycle of nuclear power.
- Proactive work and the competence of our experts have been one of the key factors in this. The impact of OL3 will make it the greatest single action for the benefit of the climate ever in Finnish history, Ms. Mustonen says.
TVO will still need a separate permission from STUK for the loading of the nuclear fuel. One open point to be resolved prior to the fuel loading is to eliminate the vibrations detected during the commissioning tests of the plant in the pressuriser surge line which is part of the reactor coolant system. STUK will inspect the plans for the solution presented by TVO, and will oversee the work and verify that the modifications have been completed and the effectiveness of the solution tested before fuel loading.
Together with renewable energy production modes, nuclear power plays a crucial role in the fight against climate change. At present, about 27 percent of electricity consumed in Finland is produced with climate friendly nuclear power. The commissioning of the third plant unit in Olkiluoto will increase the share to ca. 40 percent.
For more information, please contact:
Jarmo Tanhua, President and CEO
Marjo Mustonen, Senior Vice President, Electricity Production
Johanna Aho, Head of Communications, tel. +358 40 7290822