Daily Management Review

France shuts down first reactor of the country's oldest NPP


The French energy corporation EDF shut down reactor No. 1 of the oldest French nuclear power plant Fessenheim, the company’s website reports.

Fessenheim NPP is located in the eponymous commune in the north-east of France near the German border and consists of two power units of 900 MW each.

Earlier, with reference to the decree posted on the website of the official French publication Journal Officiel, it was reported that the decommissioning of the French Fessenheim NPP would begin on February 22 with the shutdown of the first reactor; the second one will be closed at the end of June. In November, French President Emmanuel Macron announced plans to reduce nuclear energy production by 50% by 2035 and to close 14 nuclear reactors.

“On February 22, 2020, the first power unit of the Fessenheim NPP was finally disconnected from the national power grid,” the EDF said.

It is also noted that operations have begun to cool the primary circuit, which will help open the reactor and drain the fuel. The company added that the second unit is still operating and will be disconnected from the network on June 30, 2020.

The closure of the Fessenheim NPP, the same age as the Japanese Fukushima-1, was one of the campaign promises of former French President Francois Hollande. He stated that the station, put into operation in 1977, should cease operation in 2016, but its closure was postponed later, since the opening dates of the Flamanville NPP had been moved to 2018.

source: lemonde.fr