The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Saturday started the operations on its first Nuclear Power Plant ‘Barakah’ in capital Abu Dhabi.
The Unit 1 out of 4 Units in Nuclear reactor has achieved its criticality and begin producing electricity. Unit 1 has the capacity to produce 1400 MW of electricity.
Total capacity of Nuclear plant is 5,600 MW which is intended to supply up to 25% of UAE’s energy needs.
“Unit 1 of UAE’s Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant achieved its first criticality. This is an important milestone towards commercial operations and generating clean energy. IAEA has been supporting UAE from the beginning of its nuclear power programme.” tweeted The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) – the nuclear industry’s main oversight body.
Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan tweeted, “We proudly witness the start of Barakah nuclear power plant operations, in alignment with the highest international safety standards. Congratulations on realizing this historic achievement in the energy sector & marking this milestone in the roadmap for sustainable development.”
100 percent construction in the Unit 1 of Barakah Power Plant completed in December 2018 and the operations started in July 2020.
The remaining Units are also in their advance stages of development and will start their operations soon.
Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC), which is building and operating the plant with Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) said, “The start-up of Unit 1 marks the first time that the reactor safely produces heat, which is used to create steam, turning a turbine to generate electricity.”
Barakah is the first Nuclear Power Plant in the Arab world.
Though Qatar has criticized the development and operations of Barakah Power Plant, stating concerns about its safety and lack of co-operation with regional states on the project as well as that it poses a serious threat to regional stability and the environment.
While UAE denied that there are safety issues with the plant stating that Barakah adheres to the highest standards of nuclear safety and security.