NEI to help regenerate Romania’s nuclear sector

October 21, 2020, 12:00PMNuclear News


The Nuclear Energy Institute and the Romanian Atomic Forum (Romatom) have signed a memorandum of understanding for cooperation in civil applications of nuclear energy, according to Romatom on October 14.

The MOU was signed less than a week after the United States and Romania initialed a draft intergovernmental agreement for cooperation on the construction of two additional reactors at Romania’s Cernavoda nuclear power plant and the refurbishment of Unit 1. Cernavoda currently houses two operating reactors—Units 1 and 2, twin 650-MWe CANDU-6 pressurized heavy-water reactors.

Maria Korsnick, NEI’s president and chief executive officer, and Teodor Chirica, Romatom’s honorary president, signed the MOU during a webinar on investment opportunities and the capabilities of the U.S. and Romanian nuclear industries. Also in attendance were Tommy Joyce, the U.S. Department of Energy’s deputy assistant secretary for global energy security and multilateral engagement, and Dan Dragan, secretary of state in the Romanian Ministry of Energy, Economy, and Business Environment.

Romanian numerals: According to Romatom, nuclear energy accounts for 18 percent of Romania’s domestic electricity production and 33 percent of the country’s clean energy output. The sector provides 11,000 jobs, a number that could increase to 19,000 with the development of new nuclear projects.

Quotes: “This memorandum of understanding, together with the recent intergovernmental agreement between the United States and Romania, demonstrates the importance of international cooperation to reduce carbon emissions and promote energy security,” Korsnick said. “The U.S. nuclear field has an unparalleled history of industrial partnerships and wants to be Romania’s partner, given that Romania is revitalizing its nuclear energy infrastructure. Together with Romatom, NEI wants to support this collaboration to promote nuclear energy as a clean energy solution and help Romania achieve its climate and energy security goals.”

Chirica said, “In accordance with Romania’s energy strategy and the National Integrated Plan for Energy and Climate Change, nuclear energy plays an essential role in all scenarios, capitalizing on the operational experience of Units 1 and 2 of the Cernavoda plant. The memorandum signed today with our American partners strengthens the nuclear capabilities of both parties and creates opportunities for the successful implementation of Romania's projects, such as the Cernavoda Units 3 and 4, the refurbishment of Unit 1, and other future projects, such as small modular reactors.”

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