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Belgium

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As of 31 December 2022

Belgium has two nuclear power plants: Doel, a four-unit plant located 15 km northwest of Antwerp; and Tihange, a three-unit plant located about 25 km west-southwest of Li├Ęge.

Doel 3 was shut down as planned in September 2022. There had been calls to extend the reactor’s operation, but operator Engie cited legal and logistical obstacles as an issue. Despite the government asking Engie to investigate extending the operating lifetime of Tihange 2 in July 2022, the unit was also permanently shut down at the end of January 2023 after 40 years of operation.

Events in Ukraine in early 2022 prompted a rapid reassessment of the country’s policy to phase out nuclear energy by 2025, which had been reaffirmed in 2020 following the election of a new coalition government. Following the decision in March 2022 to extend the operation of Doel 4 and Tihange 3 to 2035, in February 2023 the government asked Engie to investigate whether Doel 1&2 and Tihange 1 could operate beyond their 2025 shutdown dates, so that they could be held in reserve for the winter months of 2025-2027.

In February 2023 RECUMO, a facility to recycle radioactive residues from the production of medical radioisotopes, began construction in Mol. The facility is scheduled to begin operation in 2026 and will process the current residues and those resulting from isotope production until 2038.

Figure Bg1. Annual electricity output (TWh) and age of reactors (years) at time of generation

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Figure Bg2. Average capacity factor of reactors in Belgium

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Figure Bg3. Emissions avoidance through use of nuclear generation in Belgium

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WNN Links

Belgium asks Engie to extend Tihange 2's life : World Nuclear News - 18 July 2022

Belgium considers extended use of older reactors : World Nuclear News - 7 February 2023



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