Netherlands to Build Two New Nuclear Plants

Netherlands is planning to build two new nuclear power plants according to a national energy system plan outlined by the government last week.

The government’s publication on Friday shows a study is being conducted on various types of carbon-free capacity and how nuclear energy can be added into the Netherlands’ power mix. The study is also looking at the cost efficiency of nuclear energy and its potential benefits in terms of use of space and infrastructure investments. Furthermore, the outline also says the role nuclear energy can play in hydrogen production will be explored.

According to the outline, the government aims to cover approximately the Netherlands’ annual power demand with future domestic capacity, which needs more flexibility given the variable nature of renewables. The required adjustable generation, which nuclear generation offers, will also have to be carbon-free.

The government announced at the end of 2021 that the country would not only aim to build two nuclear plants after 2030, it would also look to increase the lifespan of the country’s only active reactor, the 485 MW Borssele plant. Nuclear output from Borssele has averaged just over 414MW in 2022, roughly the same as in 2021 when it averaged 412MW.

On the other hand, onshore and offshore wind output has risen by an average of 177.29MW and 282.72MW, respectively, in 2022. The government last week announced tenders for six new offshore wind farms, which will have a total capacity of 10.7 GW, to be held between 205 and 2027. It targets between 2029 and 2031 for their launch.

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