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Crimea crisis calls Czech-Russia nuclear plant expansion into doubt

In the wake of Russia moving military forces into the Crimea region of Ukraine, a Czech official is questioning whether Russian contracts to expand a Czech nuclear power plant should move forward.

Czech Republic Defense Minister Martin Stropnicky said Russia has “disappeared from the group of predictable, democratic countries,” and said the events in Crimea are “unacceptable.”

According to Reuters, a nuclear energy consortium that includes Russia’s Atomstroyexport is bidding on a $10 billion contract to expand the Czech Republic’s Temelin Nuclear Power Station near the Austrian border.

The power plant currently has two nuclear reactors, which have a power generation capacity 1,015 MW each. Construction on the plant began in 1987, and the then-communist government destroyed six villages to make way for the power plant.

The plant was originally supposed to have four operating reactors, but the 1990 Velvet Revolution caused the then-Czechoslovakian government to cancel plans for unit Nos. 3 and 4.

This article was republished with permission from Power Engineering’s sister website Electric Light & Power.