Photo by BTA on 9 November, 2023

Bulgarian Nuclear Society President: Nuclear Energy Sector in Good Condition, Many Countries Strive to Achieve What Bulgaria Has

World News Agencies By BTA - Bulgarian News Agency • 9 November, 2023

Jerusalem, 9 November, 2023 (TPS) -- VELIKO TARNOVO, NORTH CENTRAL BULGARIA, (BTA)
Bulgarian Nuclear Society (BNS) President Mladen Mitev Thursday told BTA that the Bulgarian nuclear energy sector is in a good condition and many countries strive to achieve what this country has had for years now. “We need to develop it because nuclear energy has no alternative since it is part of the low carbon electricity sources strategy”, he added.

Mitev was speaking during an annual BNS conference themed “Nuclear Energy for the People” held in Veliko Tarnovo on November 8-11. During the forum, members of the BNS from various fields of application of nuclear energy discussed the sector’s future and ways to attract staff.

“Sooner or later, every government in the last 20 years has come to the conclusion that it cannot do without nuclear energy, and Bulgaria has had a strong focus in this direction in the last seven years,” Mitev said. He stressed that what is currently at the forefront is a strategy for attracting staff, because “it is clear what needs to be done, but the question is who will do it”.

“In the next five years, 700 experts in the industry will retire. Some 130 people leave the nuclear power industry every year,” Iskren Tsvetkov of the Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) said. He added that their replacement takes a long time because a nuclear unit operator needs at least 18 months of specialized training at the Kozloduy NPP. Tsvetkov added that 3,700 people work in the plant at present. “It is one of the largest employers in the country, providing scholarships and good starting salaries for young specialists,” he said.

The experts noted that over 30 countries across the world develop nuclear energy. Some 440 nuclear reactors are currently in operation, another 50 to 60 are being built. The participants concurred that Bulgaria needs four 1,000-megawatt reactors, as laid down in a 2050 strategic development plan. This will enable this country to maintain its energy independence and respond adequately to climate change.
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