Fermi Energia proposes location for small nuclear reactor in Viru-Nigula

A molten salt reactor being developed by Canadian firm Terrestrial Energy Inc.
A molten salt reactor being developed by Canadian firm Terrestrial Energy Inc. Source: Fermi Energia

Fermi Energia has proposed to the Viru-Nigula municipality government to establish the right of superficies in favor of the company on the Malala real estate located near the port of Kunda belonging to the rural municipality.

Fermi Energia, a company seeking to set up a small-module nuclear power plant in Estonia, made a proposal to the municipality government of Viru-Nigula, Lääne-Viru County last week to be granted the right of superficies to set up such plant near the port of Kunda on the country's North Coast.

Fermi Energia Management Board Member Henri Ormus said on Friday: "We have met with people from the Viru-Nigula municipality altogether on seven occasions at different locations in the municipality over the course of 18 months and explained the substance of the project in the municipality council on two occasions."

Ormus said this does not mean that the location for the plant has been chosen, but creates a groundwork and confidence for further cooperation.

"We will go on conducting studies of locations and presenting the project also at the other locations shortlisted in the exclusion analysis," Ormus added. 

The location for which the company sought the right of superficies in the Viru-Nigula municipality is the Madala property near the port of Kunda.

Ormus pointed out that the establishment of a power plant with a small modular nuclear reactor requires that a national designated spatial plan procedure is carried out. Fermi Energia intends to make a proposal for the conduct of such procedure after the completion of the preliminary studies currently underway, in 2021. 

Viru-Nigula (area in red) on the north coast of Estonia would like to see Fermi Energia's molten salt reactor built on its territory. Source: OpenStreetMaps/Wikimedia

The purpose of the national designated spatial plan procedure will be to officially establish which combinations of suitable location and technology, the parameters of which will be offered by  Fermi Energia, are suitable for the establishment of the plant from the social, economic and environmental aspects. 

Fermi Energia Chairman of the Supervisory Board Sandor Liive said: "There is one important prerequisite for the establishment of a nuclear power plant in Estonia: that a municipality is found that is prepared to allow it in its territory, and therefore we are talking to those who have been interested. The ones that have been most interested are the municipalities of Viru-Nigula and Luganuse."

Fermi Energia's goal is to select the most suitable technology for Estonia from among the most modern small modular reactors currently being developed.

It is expected to take five to seven years, but regardless of the choice of technology, necessary works is being started now, such as location, legal issues and training. Help is also needed to explain basic knowledge of nuclear energy to society.

Fermi Energia is a company founded by Estonian nuclear scientists, energy experts and entrepreneurs at the beginning of 2019, with the aim of commissioning a new generation small modular reactor power plant in Estonia to ensure Estonia's energy security, meeting climate goals and developing the country's economy and science in high technology. 


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Editor: Helen Wright

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