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‘Move To Integrate Nuclear Into Power Mix On Course’   
 
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22-Oct-2019  
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Mr William Owuraku Aidoo (middle), Deputy Minister of Energy in charge of Power, chatting with Prof. Benjamin J. B. Nyarko (left), Director-General, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, after the event. With them is Mr Anthony Stott (right), Team Leader, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
 
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Ghana's agenda to integrate nuclear power into its power mix is progressing steadily, with the completion of almost all requirements in the first phase of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA’s) list for the establishment of a nuclear power plant.

Overall, most of the recommendations and suggestions have been addressed and the country is preparing a Programme Comprehensive Report (PCR), upon which the government will make a knowledgeable commitment to the development of nuclear power in the country,” the acting Director of the Nuclear Power Institute under the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), Dr Seth Kofi Debrah, said.

He made this known at a follow-up workshop on phase one of an Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) Mission to Ghana project in Accra yesterday.

The PCR, Dr Debrah said, would be submitted to Cabinet next month.

He said the phase one was almost complete, and that the second phase of the project would begin by the close of the year.

According to the director, the physical construction of nuclear power generators was expected to begin in 2023, to be completed in six years.

Phases

The first phase requires Ghana to meet all the infrastructural conditions outlined by the IAEA, which mainly borders on safety management, regulatory framework, radiation safety, among others.

The milestone paves the way for the country to begin the second phase of the programme, which includes the implementation of decisions made during phase one.

The four-day workshop is to assess the actions implemented in line with the recommendations and suggestions provided during the phase one INIR Mission by the IAEA in 2017.

Participants will also discuss areas of national nuclear power infrastructure which need further work for implementation.

Recommendations

Dr Debrah said as part of measures to carry out the recommendations, a technical study had been conducted by the GNPPO finance group to analyse various financing options for the establishment of Ghana’s first nuclear build.

He said four candidate sites, which satisfied all internationally recognised criteria requirements, had since been certified for the establishment of the nuclear power plant.

According to him, the cost of upgrading the transmission system up to 2030 was estimated at $600 million, with an additional $150 million required for the construction of nuclear plants for the four candidate sites.

Exit

The Director-General of the GAEC, Professor Benjamin J. B. Nyarko, said documentation, the legal framework and other preparatory works were in place for Ghana to exit phase one of the IAEA milestone for plant construction preparations to start from next year.

“We are convinced that adding nuclear power to our hydro, thermal and renewable energy sources will give us the resilience and reliability required to achieve the objectives of industrialising and creating jobs for our people,” he added.

Nuclear power

A Deputy Minister of Energy in charge of Power, Mr William Owuraku Aidoo, said apart from having the ability to generate high-capacity, base-load electricity to drive the government’s industrial agenda, nuclear power had the added advantage of having relatively low environmental impacts.

Background

Ghana started exploring the possibility of harnessing nuclear energy for power generation in 1963, when it launched a reactor under the watch of the GAEC.

However, the dream stalled in 1966 with the overthrow of the First President of Ghana, Dr Kwame Nkrumah.

Prolonged erratic power supply, as a result of the energy crisis which began in the 1980s, has rekindled the discussion on nuclear power generation.
 
 
Source: Daily Graphic
 
 

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