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NuScale Initiates Deployment of First SMR in Europe

As world leaders and government officials convened at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, NuScale Power and S.N. Nuclearelectrica S.A. ("Nuclearelectrica") utilized this global platform to announce their commitment to work together to advance clean energy solutions in Romania.

At a November 4 ceremony, Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. Department of Energy, and Romania’s Minister of Energy, Virgil Popescu, shared the news that NuScale and Nuclearelectrica signed a teaming agreement to advance the deployment of NuScale’s innovative small modular reactor (SMR) technology. Specifically, the agreement outlines the next significant milestones for Nuclearelectrica and NuScale to develop safe, affordable zero-carbon power technology with a focus on retired coal plant sites. It will support the Government of Romania’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan to phase out 4.59 GWe of coal fired energy production by 2032. By repurposing coal plants, Nuclearelectrica and NuScale can help communities and plant workers participate in the transition to decarbonized energy, while also continuing to provide local economic benefits. This strategy serves as a catalyst for deployments in other Three Seas Initiative countries seeking to decarbonize. Under the teaming agreement, NuScale will help Nuclearelectrica develop its detailed deployment plan, and together, the organizations will take critical steps toward deploying a first NuScale 6-module, 462 MWe, power plant in Romania with a target as early as 2027/2028. The NuScale 6-module power plant is estimated to generate 193 permanent power plant jobs, 1,500 construction jobs, 2,300 manufacturing jobs and help Romania avoid 4M tons of CO2 emissions per year.

“Based on PNIESC, Romania plans to reduce CO2 emissions by 43.9% until 2030 and its import dependency from 20.8% today to 17.8% in 2030. Nuclear energy has an essential role in achieving these decarbonization targets and ensuring the energy transition to a carbon-free economy, currently contributing 33% in total CO2-free energy production. After the implementation of strategic investment projects, this contribution will increase exponentially, while also ensuring energy security for Romania and the region. Building and operating small modular reactors will have proven environmental benefits of clean, emissions-free energy, bringing direct socio-economic benefits to the community it serves and generating continued prosperity for the regional industry and economy. We aim to develop the first SMR this decade in order to meet our critical energy demand and green targets, to secure a quality future for the generations to come. Decarbonization with nuclear is possible! I salute and support the signing of the teaming between the two companies, based on the long history for our two countries. The bilateral relations between Romania and the USA in the nuclear field started in the 1980s and since then they bring numerous benefits, most important economic stability and energy security. I thank our American partners and Secretary Granholm for supporting and endorsing the nuclear programs”, said Virgil Popescu, Minister of Energy, Romania during the ceremony.

“As Romania aims to diversify its energy portfolio and meet climate goals, NuScale’s advanced technology presents the perfect safe, economic and scalable solution,” said John Hopkins, NuScale Power Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “While world leaders emphasize how critical this moment is in addressing climate change, NuScale’s SMR technology not only represents a pathway to meet Romania’s climate commitments, but also is a means to bolster local economic growth.”

“Nuclearelectrica is proud to be at the lead, valuing its experience to operate at excellent standards one of the highest performant nuclear plants in the world, into developing the first SMRs in Europe, an energy source that is 100% carbon free and which will reduce environmental footprints and put us on a path toward a zero-emission world. And at the same time, will form a new generation of engineers, which will benefit from the 25 years of experience Nuclearelectrica has and the groundbreaking innovation of NuScale’s SMR technology . What exciting times to contribute to the future of energy, build a clean legacy for the generations to come”, Cosmin Ghita, Chief Executive Officer, Nuclearelectrica.

This agreement follows a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed between Nuclearelectrica and NuScale in 2019 to evaluate the development, licensing and construction of a NuScale SMR in Romania. This latest agreement further advances the commitment to facilitate the deployment of a NuScale SMR in Romania, in which they have the potential to accommodate the first deployment of SMRs in Europe and to become a hub for SMR production in the region, as well as a base for supporting operatorship of this new technology in other countries.

NuScale is excited and proud to work with our partners at Nuclearelectrica to showcase the many benefits our technology will bring not only in Romania, but around the world.

By the Numbers

How does this agreement to build a 6-module plant translate into numbers?

NuScale Power, One 12-module plant

  • 11M man hours in construction employment
  • 270 power plant jobs
  • 1,171 construction jobs
  • 4,656 manufacturing jobs
  • Eliminates 8M tons of CO2 per year
  • 4.6 GW in coal generation to be replaced with 5 NuScale 12-module plants 
  • Eliminates 45M tons of CO2 per year
Three Seas
  • 52.8 GW in coal generation to be replaced with 57 NuScale 12-module Plants
  • Eliminates 456M tons of CO2 per year