Brazil's minister of Mines and Energy, Edison Lobão, stated this Friday, September 12, in Angra dos Reis, Rio de Janeiro, where two nuclear plants have been built, that Brazil has already set as a priority the resumption of its nuclear program, and that it should build from 50 to 60 nuclear plants.
The construction of the plants should happen over the next 50 years and they should have capacity for generating approximately 1,000 megawatts per unit.
The minister made the statement during a visit to the site in which the plant Angra 3 is going to be built. According to the forecasts of the ministry, it should enter into operation within five years.
The unit will be able to generate 1,405 megawatts of energy at full capacity. This month, the area that is going to house the construction site and the new thermal plant will start being prepared.
"The problem that arose in Bolivia provides further evidence that we will have to resume our nuclear program. The president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva reckons that the nuclear policy is a priority for Brazil, and Angra 3 is a personal decision made by the president – based on a decision of the CNPE (National Council for Energy Policies)."
Lobão called attention to the fact that the construction has already been defined of four new nuclear units – (two in the Southeast and other two in the Northeast), with capacity for generating approximately 1,000 megawatts each.
"In the Northeast, several states have expressed interest in housing the plants, among them Pernambuco, Alagoas, Sergipe and Bahia – they all want the plants. In the Southeast, no interest has yet been shown. However, there is a program underway that will be submitted to the CNPE for the construction of other units, totaling 60,000 megawatts."
After stating that the country has an installed capacity of 100,000 megawatts, the minister claimed that there are not going to be any obstacles to obtaining previous licensing in order to begin construction work of the Angra 3 plant.
"There is no doubt that the licensing will not be a problem, and the plant will be built in five years. During this period, all of the necessary legal procedures will be taken care of. The requirements of the Ministry of the Environment total to 60 and all of them, as I said before, are either being catered to or will be met over the course of construction. There is not a chance that the plant will not be built as a consequence of these requirements."
Lobão stated once again that Brazil stores its nuclear waste in an adequate manner. With regard to the demand for the country to have a definitive site for storing such waste, the minister asserted that no country has a site of that kind.
"We are storing our waste adequately and there is not, in any country in the world, a definitive waste storage site. A French delegation has recently visited our premises and approved of our procedures – they regarded them as adequate. And they possess vast experience in the topic. Nevertheless, we are going to improve even further," stated the minister.