Bulgaria signs deal for nuclear fuel from non-Russian source

SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Bulgaria’s only nuclear plant on Thursday signed a deal with Westinghouse Electric Sweden to provide nuclear fuel for one of its reactors, in a bid to diversify its energy supplies,

The Kozloduy plant currently uses nuclear fuel supplied by Russian firm Rosatom to operate the two Russian-designed VVER-1000 nuclear reactors that generate about one-third of the EU country’s electricity.

Energy Minister Rossen Hristov said that the 10-year deal with Westinghouse will help to guarantee normal operations amid the unclear situation with the deliveries of nuclear fuel from Russia. He added that a similar contract will be signed soon with France’s Framatome for the supply of fuel for the second 1,000-megawatt unit.

“This will complete the procedure for full diversification and security of supply, because the fuel will come from two independent non-Russian sources,” Hristov said.

Bulgaria has been almost totally dependent on imports from Russia for its nuclear fuel and most of its gas supply, but in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine the country is determined to end its dependence on Russian fossil fuels.

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