NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 17 – Plans by several African countries, including Kenya and Zambia, to invest in peaceful nuclear energy and address electricity supply shortfalls are still on course, the regional head of Russia’s state-owned nuclear agency has said.
The move is backed by the demand for reliable power by huge energy intensive industries.
Rosatom’s Central and Southern Africa chief executive officer Dmitry Shornikov says African Industries continue to demand huge amounts of base load power that is reliable 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Rosatom and the Kenya signed a cooperation agreement in 2016 in the sphere of nuclear applications for peaceful purposes.
“The MoU created a basis for us to cooperate in a wide area of nuclear applications, including but not limited to; assistance in development of Kenyan nuclear energy infrastructure, fundamental and applied research, design, construction and operation of nuclear facilities, production and use of radioisotopes for nuclear medicine, industry and agriculture, handling of radioactive waste as well as training and preparation of specialists in the field of nuclear,” said Shornikov.
He said that peaceful applications for nuclear go far beyond the energy sector to include solutions for healthcare, agriculture, mining and science.
Rosatom is working to set up a Center for Nuclear Science and Technology (CNST) that will offer a wide range of applications of radiation and nuclear technologies in medicine, industry and agriculture.
“The CNST brings various economic advantages such as new technological industry platforms, national industry development, improved regional investment climates, agricultural export growth, new jobs as well as increased life expectancy and improved quality of life for the population. As a global vendor and an operator of nuclear facilities across the globe we strive to exceed global best practices to ensure safety truly is the top priority,” Shornikov added.