Commission launches European Industrial Alliance on SMRs
Brussels, 6 February 2024: Today, the European Commission has launched the European Industrial Alliance on Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) together with its “Communication on a recommended 2040 emissions reduction target”. Nucleareurope has been instrumental in the creation of this Alliance, thanks to the work undertaken as Chair of the European SMR pre-Partnership Steering Committee together with SNETP, ENSREG and the European Commission, and our outreach to Members of the European Parliament that culminated in the overwhelming adoption of an Own Initiative Report on SMRs.
“The deployment of SMRs will bring significant benefits to Europe, including greater energy sovereignty, lower CO2 emissions, new jobs and economic growth” states Yves Desbazeille, nucleareurope Director General. “The European nuclear industry has been at the forefront of innovation and industrial excellence for decades and this Industrial Alliance will help maintain our industry’s world class position. However, there are several challenges which need to be tackled to ensure the smooth deployment of SMRs. Therefore, we are delighted that the Commission is moving ahead with this Alliance in order to work on viable solutions to overcome these challenges.”
The goal of the Alliance is to facilitate the development of SMRs in Europe by the early 2030s. It will also support concrete SMR projects in order to accelerate their deployment. According to the Commission, this Alliance will elaborate a Strategic Action Plan in order to identify, for example:
Technically mature and commercially viable SMR technologies that could be supported under the Alliance.
Potential gaps and solutions in the European supply chain for SMRs (including fuel and raw materials).
Investment barriers, funding opportunities and new financial blending options to support SMR development.
Future needs for research on SMRs and AMRs and identify existing skills gaps along the supply chain to be addressed under the Euratom Research and Training Programme, and at national level.
The launch of the Alliance has been announced in the European Commission’s 2040 targets Communication adopted today. According to the Commission’s press statement, the Industrial Alliance on Small Modular Reactors “is the latest initiative to enhance industrial competitiveness and ensure a strong EU supply chain and a skilled workforce”. Furthermore, the Communication indicates that the energy sector is expected to be fully decarbonised just after 2040 thanks to all zero and low-carbon energy solutions, including nuclear.
Next steps: A call for Alliance membership will open shortly (more information will be published under the European Commission’s webpage dedicated to Industrial Alliances). All public and private legal entities which fulfil a set of eligibility membership criteria can apply for membership of this Alliance. In addition, a dissemination event covering the scope, objectives and activities of the Alliance is expected to be organised in Brussels in March 2024.
About us: nucleareurope is the Brussels-based trade association for the nuclear energy industry in Europe. The membership of nucleareurope is made up of 15 national nuclear associations and through these associations, nucleareurope represents nearly 3,000 European companies working in the industry and supporting around 1,100,000 jobs.