France tweaks rules to keep nuclear plants running during heatwave

France’s nuclear power regulator has extended temporary waivers allowing five power stations to continue discharging hot water into rivers as the country contends with a fourth heatwave of the summer and an energy crisis. High river temperatures have in recent weeks threatened to reduce France’s already low nuclear output at a time when nearly half its reactors are offline because of corrosion problems and maintenance. The ASN watchdog said on Monday it had approved a government request for the waivers introduced in mid July to be prolonged at the Bugey, Saint Alban, Tricastin, Blayais and Golfech power plants. Regulations typically require nuclear production be limited during times of high heat to prevent the hot discharge waters re-entering the rivers from endangering wildlife. EDF late on Sunday said it was lifting output restriction warnings at the Saint Alban and Bugey nuclear plants on the Rhone river. River temperatures at both are expected to peak on Aug. 14.

— source | Aug 8, 2022

Nullius in verba


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