Teollisuuden Voima Oyj has told its shareholders that it will not apply for a construction licence for the Olkiluoto 4 nuclear power plant before the end of June. But it will keep the option open and says it is prepared to apply for a new decision in principle.
According to the decision-in-principle TVO received in 2010 to construct a fourth reactor at the Olkiluoto plant, a construction application licence needs to be submitted to the government by 30 June 2015. In May 2014, TVO requested a five-year extension to the decision in principle because of construction delays to the Olkiluoto 3 EPR project. But the cabinet denied the request in September 2014, saying it was "not in line with the overall good of society."
TVO said its proposal is justified by the delay to the startup of the Olkiluoto 3 EPR. Originally begun in May 2005, the latest schedule foresees the completion of OL3 construction in mid-2016, with operations following in 2018. The reactor is being built by the AREVA-Siemens consortium.
"In this situation it is impossible to make significant Olkiluoto 4 related decisions necessary for the construction licence application within the current period of validity of the decision-in-principle," TVO said.
However TVO's president and CEO Jarmo Tanhua acknowledged: "there is still a need for emission-free base-load power production in Finland." "Olkiluoto 4 is important for us and therefore we will be prepared to apply for a new decision-in-principle," he added.