Taiwan’s Atomic Energy Council (AEC) announced on 26 July that Power Company (Taipower) had submitted an application to shut down the two-unit Maanshan nuclear power plant in line with Taiwan's nuclear phase-out policy. Under this policy, Taiwan's operable power reactors are to be decommissioned as their 40-year operating licences expire with the aim of making Taiwan nuclear free by 2025
The operating licences for Maanshan 1 and 2, both 936 MWe pressurised water reactors, will expire in July 2024 and May 2025. Under Taiwan's Nuclear Reactor Facility Control Law, Taipower is required to then permanently close them and must file an application to decommission the units at least three years prior to energy production stopping. AEC confirmed it had received the document, adding that it would spend one month on a procedural review and 18 months on a more thorough practical overview, CNA reported.
The AEC said it would call in outside experts to form a review committee, though the timing of the process might be adjusted depending on Taipower's replies to the committee’s questions. The local government and residents will also be given a chance to participate in the process, and the details of the timetable to phase out the plant will be put online, according to the AEC.
AEC said it has "rigorously" planned the review of the decommissioning plan for the Maanshan plant and will take into account the experience gained from the review of the decommissioning plans for the Chinshan and Kuosheng plants. It said the review of Taipower's application for decommissioning Maanshan will be carried out by "a special review team composed of external scholars and experts". The local government and residents will also be given the opportunity to participate in the process.
Taiwan has three operable nuclear power reactors - one at the Kuosheng NPP and two at Maanshan . Unit 1 at Taiwan's oldest plant, Chinshan, was taken offline in December 2018, followed by Chinshan 2 in July 2019. Kuosheng 1 shut down earlier in July and Kuosheng 2 is scheduled to operate until March 2023.The plan is for the reactors to be decommissioned by 2043. Construction of two units at Lungmen began in 1999, but the project has been beset with political, legal and regulatory delays. The completed unit 1 was mothballed in July 2015, and construction of unit 2 was suspended in April 2014.