Contact authority submits statement on the EIA report of Olkiluoto 4 plant unitToday, 19 June 2008, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy submitted a statement on the environmental impact assessment report (EIA report) of Teollisuuden Voima Oyj’s (TVO) Olkiluoto 4 nuclear power plant unit. As the contact authority for the project’s envi-ronmental impact assessment procedure, the ministry states that the EIA report submitted by TVO on 14 February 2008 is essentially adequate, but TVO will need to supplement certain parts of its report by 31 August 2008.
A more detailed report is requested on the processing of cooling waters of the plant pre-sented in the project, the plant type alternatives, the Natura assessment of the plant’s neighbouring areas, accident reviews and the employment effects of the project. This sup-plementary information is imperative before the consideration of the application, submitted by TVO to the Government on the construction of a nuclear power plant, with a view to arriv-ing at a decision-in-principle, can commence regarding the application’s essential parts.
The project plan includes the intention to close the straits between the island of Kuusisen-maa and Olkiluoto, 200-300 metres in width, in order to diminish the impacts of the recircula-tion of the cooling waters. However, the EIA report does not include a sufficient account of the environmental impacts involved in constructing an embankment. Furthermore, the design criteria, planning and required permits for the prospective embankment remain completely unexplained. Further clarification is also requested on how the cooling water models might have presented the environmental impacts without an embankment.
A more detailed presentation of the various plant type alternatives is also required, with a re-view of the key technical information regarding the environmental impacts of the plant alter-natives included in the application for a decision-in-principle on Olkiluoto 4, submitted by TVO on 25 April 2008. The Natura area of the Rauma archipelago (FI02000073) shall un-dergo a Natura review on a separate schedule pursuant to section 65 of the Nature Conser-vation Act.
A more detailed presentation is also required on the methods used in accident reviews. The supplementary report must also include a brief assessment of the environmental impacts of an accident less serious than a so-called serious reactor incident. Replies must be provided to the questions set forth by Lithuania, Estonia and Norway, pertaining to the assessment of international impacts.
A more precise assessment is required on the employment effects of the project, including a review of the regional and broader employment effects on the basis of experience gained of the Olkiluoto 3 project.
The EIA procedure of Olkiluoto 4 project commenced on 31 May 2007, with TVO submitting the project’s environmental impact assessment programme to the Ministry of Trade and In-dustry, the contact authority at the time. On 14 February 2008, TVO submitted the EIA re-port, pertaining to the assessment procedure, to the Ministry of Employment and the Econ-omy, which invited opinions on it by 21 April 2008. While the EIA procedure was still under-way, TVO submitted an application for a decision-in-principle to the Ministry, addressed to the Government, on the construction of a nuclear power plant unit.
The production capacity of TVO's unit 4 would range from 1,000 to 1,800 megawatts and the thermal capacity from 2,800 to 4,600 megawatts. A pressurised water reactor and a boiling water reactor are both being considered. The technical service life of the prospective plant would be approximately 60 years, while the construction of the power plant unit would take 6 to 8 years, as planned by TVO. The project includes the intermediate onsite storage of spent nuclear fuel generated by the new unit, and the treatment and disposal of low- and interme-diate level radioactive waste. The implementation of power transmission to the national grid is also included in the project.
Jorma Aurela, Senior Engineer, MEE, tel. +358 50 592 2109
Jaana Avolahti, Counsellor, MEE, tel. +358 10 606 4836