A nationwide survey has selected Poland's best sites for nuclear power plants, two of which are planned for 2020.
A points system was used by a panel of experts based on information from a range of national institutes concerning factors such as geology, public acceptance, availability of cooling water and ease of grid connection.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the site that came top has previously been announced as a candidate and was planned for reactors in the 1980s. Zarnowiec, on the northern coast 40 kilometres from Gdansk, garnered 65.6 points and sat clearly at the head of the list of 27 candidates.
|Economy minister and deputy prime minister Waldemar Pawlak
(centre-left) with Hanna Trojanowska (centre-right) this morning
The conclusions were announced this morning by Hanna Trojanowska, the government's Plenipotentiary for Nuclear Energy as part of her work to implement a framework to introduce nuclear energy in Poland. A four-stage plan envisages legislation by 2010; site, technology and construction arrangements in 2011-13; technical plans and site works in 2014-15; and construction in 2016-20.
Presently Poland uses coal for over 90% of its electricity, demand for which is set to double by 2025. It is government policy to bring forward nuclear power to make up 10% of generation by 2030, with EU restrictions on carbon emissions a major concern.
The top ten
It remains the decision of Polska Grupa Energetyczna (PGE) to decide on siting of any nuclear power plants, in which it would hold a 51% stake. This firm, the largest power company in Poland, has previously said it would like to build two nuclear plants of 3000 MWe each, one in the north and one in the east of the country.
Zarnowiec could fulfil the requirement for a northern site, while third-placed Kopan is another 100 kilometres west along the Baltic coast. Both of these are coastal areas which also feature inland lakes.
The top-ranked site towards the east of the country was fourth-placed Nowe Miasto on the Sona river, 50 kilometres northwest of the capital, Warsaw.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News