Ulf Kristersson, the prime minister of Sweden, has outlined ideas for new laws that would enable the country to construct more nuclear power plants.
Six nuclear power plants in the country, which collectively generate around 40% of its electricity, are currently active. Along with other renewable sources, hydroelectricity accounts for 45% of the remaining energy.
It commenced phasing out nuclear electricity in 1980, and two reactors (Ringhals 1&2) were shut down in 2020 and 2019 respectively. Although Sweden doesn’t rely on gas to generate electricity, the war in Ukraine has boosted demand, which has prompted a rise in energy prices.
In order to permit the building of more reactors, the government now seeks to adopt new legislation as early as March 2024. In Sweden, there is a clear demand for increased electricity production. According to Reuters, Kristersson stated at a news conference that what they are doing today is amending legislation to enable for the construction of additional nuclear reactors in more areas.
Additionally, the nation is investigating the possibilities of small modular reactors (SMRs). Energy firms Fortum and Swedish Kärnfull Next inked a memorandum of understanding late last year to look at SMR potential in the country. The agreement is a component of a two-year feasibility assessment by Fortum on new nuclear power in Finland and Sweden.
The first SMR’s timeline in Sweden, according to Fortum, is dependent on how quickly licences and permissions are issued. It also depends on laws that say where and how many reactors can be running at the same time.
SMRs can offer dependable and fossil-free energy, heat, and hydrogen to both industry and communities, according to Laurent Leveugle, leader of Fortum’s Newbuild Feasibility Study. New nuclear will be an essential component of the climate transformation jigsaw along with new wind energy.