Abu Dhabi: With the construction of a second nuclear plant now under way, the UAE has reached another important milestone in its mission to generate safe, clean, reliable and efficient nuclear energy, a senior official said yesterday.
Mohammad Al Hammadi, Chief Executive Officer of the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec) said the selected site of the UAE peaceful nuclear energy programme is located in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi.
Enec hosted Sang-jick Yoon, Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy of the Republic of Korea, at an event at Barakah to celebrate the successful partnership between the two countries and commemorate the start of construction for the UAE’s second nuclear energy plant.
Khaldoun Al Mubarak, Chairman of Enec, praised the commitment demonstrated by the Korean Government in the development of the UAE’s peaceful nuclear energy programme, and thanked Yoon for his Government’s continued support as the two nations work together to deliver a world-class nuclear energy programme to the UAE. UAE Minister of State and CEO of Masdar, Sultan Al Jaber, and senior representatives from the Korea Electric Power Corporation (Kepco), Enec’s prime contractor, also attended the event.
In line with the approved construction licence from the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), Enec poured the first safety concrete for Unit 2, marking the official start of construction of the UAE’s second nuclear energy plant. Construction of the Unit 2 plant will take five years, with the plant scheduled to enter commercial operation in 2018, pending further regulatory approvals.
Enec will apply for an operating licence for Units 1 and 2 in 2015 and recently submitted the construction licence application for Units 3 and 4 to FANR in March 2013.
“We are drawing on the skills and expertise of a world-class nuclear corporation through our prime contractor Kepco,” said Al Hammadi.
“One of the key factors of the bidding process to support the UAE’s nuclear energy programme, along with meeting the highest standards of safety and quality, was the company’s ability to provide the resources and capabilities to deliver these key early development stages of the project. Kepco is meeting our goal of delivering the gold standard of peaceful nuclear energy development and we are very proud of the progress we are making with our partners,” Al Hammadi said.
“We are committed to delivering a world-class programme from construction through to operations, and I would like to congratulate our entire team and Kepco for their dedication to carrying out their work with safety and quality top of mind at all times.”
Enec is working to deliver safe, clean, efficient and reliable nuclear energy to help address the UAE’s future energy requirements, which is expected to grow at a rate of 9 per cent per year - three times the global average.
Enec officially commenced the construction of the UAE’s first nuclear energy plant last year by pouring the first nuclear safety concrete for Barakah Unit 1.
Enec is constructing a total of four nuclear energy plants in Barakah. In July 2012, Enec received its construction licence from the Federal Authority of Nuclear Regulation (FANR) and a No Objection Certificate from the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi for the construction of the first two plants.
The first plant is expected to commence operations in 2017, pending further regulatory approvals. As well as diversifying the nation’s energy supply, with four plants online by 2020, nuclear energy will save the UAE up to 12 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year.