Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister recently gave an interview emphasizing the importance of nuclear power for the national energy supply, highlighting that the ongoing nuclear power plant projects will greatly contribute to feed Turkey’s ever growing hunger for energy.
“Before the end of this year, we will lay the ground work for the construction of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant. The efficiency of nuclear energy exceeds 90 percent,” Albayrak said and cited the partnership with Japanese firms on the construction of the second nuclear power plant in the Black Sea city of Sinop.
He also announced that between 2023 and 2030, Turkey will put three nuclear power plants, the Akkuyu, Sinop and a third one to be established in an unconfirmed location, into operation. These nuclear power plants, once operational, are planned to meet 10 percent of the country-wide electricity consumption, the minister said.
Turkey is seeking access to peaceful nuclear energy
Currently there are plans for three nuclear power plants on Turkey’s agenda. In May 2010, Turkey and Russia struck a deal for the $20-billion Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant project in the Mediterranean city of Mersin. Dependent on imports for almost all of its energy, Turkey has embarked on an ambitious nuclear program, commissioning Rosatom in 2013 to build four 1,200-megawatt (MW) reactors.
In June, Russia’s state nuclear energy corporation Rosatom and the Turkish consortium Cengiz-Kolin-Kalyon (CKK) signed a deal for the transfer of shares. At the ceremony organized within the scope of the IX International Nuclear Energy Forum ATOMEXPO, it imposed that the latter will acquire a 49-percent stake in the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant.
Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant will produce approximately 35 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity every year, once completed with a service life of 60 years.
The project has repeatedly run into delays, including being briefly halted after Turkey downed a Russian jet near the Syrian border in November 2015. Ties between the two countries have since normalized and work on the plant has resumed.
The Turkish Energy Market Regulatory Authority (EMRA) announced in June that it granted a power generation license to Rosatom’s Akkuyu Nuclear Company for a 49-year period Thursday for its Akkuyu NGS project in the southern city of Mersin.
On May 3, 2013, an intergovernmental agreement on nuclear power plant construction and cooperation for the Sinop Nuclear Power Plant, which is the second nuclear power plant project in Turkey, was signed with Japan. As stipulated by the agreement, the Turkey Electricity Generation Company (EÜAŞ) will hold a 49 percent stake in the plant while a Japanese and French company will have 30 and 21 percent stakes, respectively. The project is estimated to cost more than $16 billion according to Japanese sources.
The Sinop nuclear power plant will have a total 4,480 megawatt capacity of electricity generation with four reactors each having a 1,120 megawatt capacity.
Moreover, despite yet no official announcement by the government, some sources have claimed that the third plant will be constructed in the İğneada district in the northwestern province of Kırklareli and the preparatory works on a third nuclear power have been reportedly initiated.