Meeting of BulAtom representatives at the American Embassy

On September 20, BulAtom’s management board member Mr. Petar Manchev and executive secretary Mr. Stanislav Georgiev met with U.S. Embassy representatives Mrs. Jen Bauer, Deputy Political-Economic Chief, Mrs. Emily Taneva, Commercial Specialist. BulAtom presented its vision for the development of Bulgaria’s nuclear power sector (available in full here):

  1.  Ensure the continued operation of Kozloduy NPP Units 5 and 6 through 2047 and 2051, respectively.
  2.  Construct and commission 4 Gen III+ power units based on Western technology in the next three decades to facilitate the phase-out of coal generation and to provide replacement capacity for KNPP 5 and 6 beyond 2050. This means using both the Kozloduy and Belene sites.
  3.  Enable the deployment of Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) through a clear and supportive administrative environment.

BulAtom welcomed the deepening cooperation in the area of civil nuclear power between the U.S. and Bulgaria. The organization expressed its eagerness and that of its members to support the deployment of Westinghouse’s AP1000 technology in Bulgaria.

Mr. Manchev cited the many benefits for Bulgaria if it were to become the first country in Europe to commission AP1000 and expressed his hope project development would be accelerated.

The issue of training and retaining the necessary talent was brough up as a major challenge. Potential solutions were discussed, key among them being steadfast political support starting from the planning stage.

The high level of public acceptance of nuclear power in Bulgaria was noted as a significant asset for any new-build program – and a prerequisite for the future adoption of SMRs, especially in communities which are new to nuclear.