Siting permit requested for new Slovak plant

20 February 2023

Jadrová Energetická Spoločnosť Slovenska (JESS) has submitted a request to the Slovak Nuclear Regulatory Authority (ÚJD) for a siting permit for a new nuclear power plant near the existing Bohunice plant in Jaslovské Bohunice, a small village in the west of the Slovak Republic.

The existing Bohunice plant (Image: Slovenské Elektrárne)

JESS said it submitted the siting permit application - comprising almost 2500 pages - on 15 February along with the Requirements for the Quality of a Nuclear Facility and the Proposal for the Nuclear Facility Boundaries for the New Nuclear Resource Project (NJZ).

In addition to the requirements for the quality of the nuclear source and the design of the boundaries, the application also addresses the issues of the commissioning safety report, the project intent for the physical-technical solution, the method of handling radioactive waste and used nuclear fuel, the size of the emergency planning zone and the assessment of the impact on the environment, the company noted.

JESS - a joint venture between Slovak radioactive waste management company JAVYS (51%) and Czech utility ČEZ (49%) - was formed in December 2009 to build and operate a new nuclear power plant at Bohunice.

JESS is responsible for the preparation of the NJZ and, "as part of the activities of the pre-preparation stage and in accordance with the approved Business Plan for the NJZ Project for the period 2022-2025, processed the necessary documentation for the written application for a permit for the location of a nuclear facility". 

Under Slovak law, ÚJD has one year in which to make a decision on the application.

"Work on the NJZ Project will continue with activities according to the current schedule of the preliminary stage aimed at processing the documentation required for placement according to construction legislation," JESS said.

It added that it plans to apply for a construction licence for the plant at the end of 2025. According to the current schedule, construction work is scheduled to start in 2031.

Other ongoing activities will be focused on the preparation of the process of selecting a technology supplier, JESS said. "The technology of the nuclear part has not yet been selected, it is based on possible projects of global suppliers of nuclear technology so that any selected project meets the required prerequisites".

It added: "Regardless of the above, work continues on incorporating the NJZ Project into spatial plans, connection to the electricity system, solving local aspects such as the concept of water management, geology, or the transport of oversized components."

Slovakia has four nuclear reactors - Mochovce units 1 and 2 and Bohunice units 3 and 4 - in commercial operation, generating half of its electricity. Mochovce unit 3 was connected to the grid ealier this month, while unit 4 is under construction.

Plans for the new fifth Bohunice unit (also referred to as Bohunice V3) were originally announced in April 2008.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News