ANKARA ø Turkey has revived its plans to erect nuclear
Officials said Turkey planned to construct at least three nuclear power
plants starting in 2011. They said the nuclear power reactors would seek to
fulfill the nation's growing demand for electricity, Middle East Newsline reported.
"We have plans to build three nuclear power plants and they will come
into operation one by one as of 2011," Turkish Energy Minister Hilmi Guler
said. "We plan to meet eight to 10 percent of the energy demand with nuclear
Guler said the nuclear power facilities would have a total capacity of
about 4,500 megawatts. He said his ministry was primarily considering
uranium to fuel the plants, but was also examining the use of thorium.
"We have known reserves of 230,000 tons of thorium and 9,200 tons of
uranium, but we are prospecting for more," Guler said.
Guler told the semi-official Anatolia news agency that no date has been
set for a tender, which would be open to the private sector. He said that so
far no site has chosen for the plants.
"The Energy Ministry has made all the required calculations and done the
feasibility studies," he said. "We're just waiting for the word to start."
In 2000, Turkey shelved a tender for a nuclear power plant near Akuya
Bay along the Mediterranean coast amid financial difficulties and protests
from environmentalists in Turkey and neighboring Greece and Cyprus. Several
Western companies, including the U.S.-based Westinghouse, Canada's AECL and
France's NPI, competed for the project.