Finland mulls over new nuclear sites

26 June 2007

A total of six municipalities in Finland have so far agreed to hold talks on possible sites for nuclear power plants with newly formed consortium Fennovoima. Separately, Fortum has submitted the programme for the environmental impact assessment for a new unit at Loviisa.


The municipal government of Loviisa in the south-west of the country agreed almost unanimously to launch talks with Fennovoima over the possible construction of another nuclear power plant in its area, already home to two nuclear power units operated by Fortum. In May 2007, a proposal to sell land for the construction of a new nuclear plant to German utility EOn was rejected by local councillors.


Further north, the municipality of Simo, in the south-western corner of Finnish Lapland, has been authorised by councillors to carry out a survey with Fennovoima for a possible plant site in the region. All of Finland's existing nuclear power plants - four operating units and one under construction - are in the south of the country. Fennovoima, which comprises Finnish and Swedish industrial and energy companies including EOn's Finnish subsidiary, is expected to announce the six to eight municipalities it will be looking into as potential station sites in July.


Meanwhile, the municipal government of Kemijarvi has also said it will provide technical assistance to Fennovoima should the consortium decide to survey the inland town in Finnish Lapland as the possible plant site. The town sits on the banks of the Finland's longest river, the Kemijoki.


The municipal government of Himanka on the west coast of Finland has also voted to negotiate with Fennovoima on the site of its proposed plant.


In addition, the coastal towns of Tornio and Kemi, close to Simo, have agreed to hold talks with Fennovoima over the siting of its proposed plant. Tornio is the location of Outokumpu's stainless steel plant. Outokumpu is part of the Fennovoima consortium.


Fortum is already looking into building a third reactor at its Loviisa site, and has now submitted the programme for its environmental impact assessment (EIA) to the Ministry of Trade and Industry. The new plant would have a capacity of 1000-1800 MWe. Fortum plans to submit the final EIA report, which will evaluate the impacts of the new plant on the environment, health and safety, and the local community and economy, by the summer of 2008.


Further information




WNA's Nuclear Energy in Finland information paper


WNN: Finnish companies unite to build nuclear plant
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