Second unit of Belarus nuclear power plant enters commercial operation
The second unit of the Belarusian Ostrovets nuclear power plant, a VVER-1200 just like the planned Paks II, entered commercial operation at the beginning of November. The same type is being built or planned in Bangladesh, China, Egypt and Turkey and planned in Hungary but not anywhere else in Europe. Why?
Probably no EU country will ever order a Rosatom nuclear reactor. We should recall Hanhikivi, which was to be delivered by Rosatom to Finland but ran into endless delays already in the planning phase because the VVER 1200 did not fulfil Finnish and EU safety standards. Over 600 modifications were necessary and the Russian side was unable to process the necessary documentation. Only a few days after the Russian invasion in Ukraine, Finland cancelled the Rosatom reactor. The reasons are many: the total dependency on Russia, decades of construction time, followed by necessary maintenance services over the entire lifetime of the plant.
Neighbouring Lithuania is not happy about the new Belarusian reactor either. They already protested the first unit because it is built in an earthquake-prone area, 50 kilometres from the capital of Lithuania. The building of the first unit was rather scandalous: the reactor vessel was dropped and some subcontractors worked without experience and licences.