Another €900m is needed to implement decommissioning projects at the two reactors of the Ignalina NPP in Lithuania after 2020, Ignalina plant manager Darius Janulevicius said on 9 August during the visit to the plant of a European Parliament delegation. “The visit goal is to familiarize the delegates with progress in decommissioning Ignalina and to discuss the importance of continuing funding by the European Union,” a plant’s statement said. For 2014-2020 the EU budget allocated funding of €450m for Ignalina’s closure. In addition, €300m of unused funds is carried over from the previous budget.
“The EU funding is guaranteed for the current financial outlook, however, to complete the decommissioning work in 2038 we are lacking about €900m,” Janulevicius said. He noted that by 2022 all used nuclear fuel should be moved from power units to a storage facility, after which dismantling of the reactor structures would begin. However, Janulevicius said delays may be necessary “due to the lack of funds”. For the same reason, operation of radioactive waste treatment facilities “may become impossible or we may have to move to partial operation”. He added that a delayed solution strategy would entail expenses for care and oversight of the facilities, as well as loss of knowledge and specialist. Ignalina NPP was closed as a condition for Lithuania’s accession to the EU.