22 Dec 2023 13:44

DTEK sees prospect of replacing thermal power plants with small modular reactors - top manager

MOSCOW. Dec 22 (Interfax) - The DTEK energy holding sees a big potential in the development of small modular reactors and their future construction on the grounds currently occupied by coal and gas power plants, DTEK Executive Director Dmitry Sakharuk said.

"We view this technology as a replacement for the existent thermal power plants, as the country is due to stop using coal in 2035. We understand that this will happen. Ukraine needs to provide capacities for itself in any case. Wind and solar energy will not be enough, because such capacities need balancing, so there is need for basic generation to work irrespective of the weather," Ukrainian media quoted Sakharuk as saying at NV's Ukraine and the World Ahead of 2024 event on Thursday.

"The logic is very simple. We have power plants for which connection, grid and infrastructure are critical. They have specialists. We should elaborate projects to replace one technology with another in five to seven years. We see a big potential in this," Sakharuk said.

The project will require funding and investment security, he said.

"The first working technologies will appear in five to seven years, and big companies, such as Hitachi and Rolls-Royce, are heavily investing in such technology," Sakharuk said.

DTEK General Director Maxim Timchenko said in an interview with the Telegram earlier that the energy holding had preliminary negotiations with Rolls on building small modular reactors on the grounds currently occupied by coal power plants.

He said he was expecting nuclear energy to be an important part of the future DTEK portfolio, since Ukraine was rebuilding and abandoning fossil fuel.