Ministry of infrastructure issues an energy permit for the second nuclear reactor unit in Krško
The Ministry of Infrastructure issued an energy permit for the JEK2 project, based on the adoption of Slovenia's Long-Term Climate Strategy and the Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan (NEPN), which clears the way for the implementation of administrative procedures and preparation of documentation for investment decision-making on JEK2 (the second nuclear reactor unit in Krško), providing a necessary basis for the final decision on the optimal energy scenario for the future supply of low-carbon Slovenia.
Minister of Infrastructure Jernej Vrtovec emphasises that this is a major decision, which will have a significant impact on the wellbeing and the environment in which future generations will live. "We have set ourselves a clear goal of achieving net-zero emissions or climate neutrality by 2050. Both the National Energy and Climate Plan (NEPN) and the Climate Strategy recognise nuclear energy as an important part of the solution, given that nuclear energy, in coexistence with renewable energy sources, makes a vital contribution to the efficient transition of Slovenia towards a low-carbon electricity system and at the same time to the robustness of the electricity system." Minister Vrtovec added that the energy permit for the JEK2 was an important milestone because it allowed for the launch of a broad public debate on the further inclusion of nuclear energy in the electricity transition and the challenges associated with it. He particularly emphasised the importance of reaching social consensus on the question of whether we want clean, green energy.
The ministry points out that issuing the energy permit does not mean a final decision on the project, but opens the way for the implementation of administrative procedures and the preparation of documentation for investment decision-making on the JEK2, which is a necessary basis for the final decision on the optimal energy scenario for the future supply of low carbon Slovenia. The whole process is extremely complex as it combines verifications of the various environmental, spatial, technical and economic parameters of the JEK2 project. All of these verifications will be carried out within the framework of the national spatial planning procedures, the environmental impact assessment, the cross-border environmental impact assessment, the acquisition of building permits, the selection of the supplier and the closure of the financial structure.
The General Director of GEN energija d.o.o., Martin Novšak, sees the energy permit for JEK2 as an important milestone along the path to a decision on the long-term use of nuclear energy in Slovenia, which, with additional nuclear generation capacity, can make a key contribution to the efficient transition of Slovenia towards a low-carbon electricity system, available energy and price benefits. "The feasibility studies carried out so far on the project have shown that JEK2 is a feasible and useful project for Slovenia's future reliable supply of home-generated electricity, which adequately responds to the key challenges of the energy trilemma and enables Slovenia to effectively face the challenges of the green electricity transition", Mr Novšak stressed.
At today’s press conference, Minister Vrtovec also presented the issue of the energy permit in the light of the common European vision for a carbon-free society and the "Fit for55" package of measures, which constitute a commitment by the European Union to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 and to achieving climate neutrality by 2050.