[사설] Rapid operation of nuclear power plants as demand for electricity surges, and false image of nuclear denuclearization revealed

It seems that the government was in a hurry. For various reasons, it was decided to abruptly restart the nuclear power plant that had been put on hold while delaying operation. It also restarts three nuclear power plants at once.

The speed of resumption is also exceptional. On the 18th, two days after receiving the approval of the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission, the Shin-Wolsong Unit 1 started operating immediately. From the 21st, electricity will be produced at 100% output. Shin-Kori 4 and Wolseong 3 will also be put back into power production this week.

The post-nuclear government, which had been insisting that “there is no problem in power supply and demand,” because there is surplus electricity even if the number of nuclear power plants is reduced, has opened up its hands to nuclear power plants as the situation becomes urgent. This is because the power supply and demand is in danger of being ruined due to the heat wave and industrial power demand. At one point on the 19th, the power reserve ratio fell below the 10% marginal line, stressing the authorities. When the reserve ratio is maintained above 10%, stable power supply is possible, so even if some power plants stop, it can be prepared for a blackout. The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy warned that spare power could drop to 4.0GW (4000MW) in the fourth week of this month, causing the reserve ratio to drop to around 5%. This figure is close to the power reserve ratio (3.43GW) that triggered the major blackout in 2011. In such a desperate crisis situation, it is very difficult, but it is fortunate that the restart of the three nuclear power plants allowed us to expand the power supply by 2150 MW compared to last week. It is expected to raise the power reserve ratio by about 2 percentage points. However, the crisis does not end only with the operation of the three nuclear power plants. In order to overcome the peak of power demand in mid-August, some of the five nuclear power plants still under maintenance, including the Hanbit 4, which have been stopped for four years since the Moon Jae-in administration took office, need to be restarted. In fact, according to the 7th Basic Plan for Electricity Supply and Demand established in 2015, even if only four nuclear power plants (Shin-Hanul 1 and 2, Shin-Kori 5, and Wolseong 1) were operating normally, there was no need for such fuss. The unreasonable runaway from nuclear power plants has caused uncertainty in the supply and demand of electricity. This power shortage has clearly shown that the government’s reckless denuclearization is just an illusion. The unscientific ego to phase out nuclear power must be stopped as soon as possible.
[ⓒ 매일경제 & mk.co.kr, 무단전재 및 재배포 금지]

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