UAE’S Barakah Nuclear Power Plant’s Unit 1 to begin operation

DUBAI UAE’s Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), announced Monday it has granted Nawah Energy Company the operating licence for Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant, making the UAE the first country in the Arab region to operate a nuclear power plant.

In a press conference, FANR said it also authorised Nawah to commission and operate Unit 1 of the nuclear power plant located in Al Dhafra, Abu Dhabi, under a 60 year licence.

The decision to issue the operating licence is a culmination of efforts made by FANR since it received an operating licence application from Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC), on behalf of Nawah, in 2015, the statement said.

FANR followed a systematic review process that included a thorough assessment of the application documentation, conducting robust regulatory oversight and inspections.

The assessment included reviewing the plant’s layout design and the analysis of the site’s location in terms of geography and demography. It also included the reactor design, cooling systems, security arrangements, emergency preparedness, radioactive waste management and other technical aspects.

FANR also assessed Nawah’s organisational and manpower readiness with all the required processes and procedures to ensure the safety and security of nuclear power plant.

The UAE’s independent nuclear regulator reviewed the 14,000 page operating licence application, conducted more than 185 inspections and requested approximately 2,000 additional pieces of information on various matters related to reactor design, safety and other issues to ensure the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant’s complete compliance with all regulatory requirements.

UAE launched its peaceful nuclear program in 2009 through its formation of ENEC, and then granted a contract of USD 40 billion to a South Korean company to build a nuclear reactor in the Barakah area in Abu Dhabi and agreed to operate it jointly for 60 years.

Source: Kuwait News Agency