Germany, Finland Prepare for Further Nuclear Output

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European planners may be able to count on additional nuclear capacity this winter in Germany and Finland following developments this week. In Germany the government agreed with operators EnBW and PreussenElektra for two German reactors — Neckarwestheim-2 and Isar-2, respectively — to prepare for possible further operation. The government is reluctant to commit to operations beyond the long-standing phaseout of Dec. 31, but wants both units in a "cold reserve" state from which they could be turned on if needed. PreussenElektra would "very much welcome a timely decision on the actual call-up" of Isar-2, CEO Guido Knott said in a statement, but has for now agreed on the preparatory work to make a call-up possible. Meanwhile in Finland, TVO's Olkiluoto-3 reached full electrical output of 1,600 megawatts on Sep. 30, becoming the largest single power generation plant in Europe. Regular commercial electricity production is slated to begin in December. In the slightly longer term, EDF announced that it is reviewing "the case to extend generation" of its Hartlepool and Heysham A-1 and -2 advanced gas reactors in the UK beyond their currently planned March 2024 closure dates.

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