France will step up monitoring of the fleet of reactors of the nuclear power group EDF to ensure that the country will have sufficient electricity production for next winter, an Energy Ministry official told Reuters on Wednesday. .
Half of EDF’s 56 domestic reactors are currently out of service due to planned maintenance and work to address corrosion issues. This has forced the group to repeatedly cut its production forecast for the year, heightening concerns over the coming winter amid a European energy crisis due to the war in Ukraine.
The French government – which is in the process of taking full control of EDF – agreed earlier this week with the utility to establish monthly “monitoring updates” regarding the progress of maintenance work and the availability reactors, the official said.
The aim would be to give market players more transparent and accessible information on the status of reactors, he added.
“We are currently working on bringing the fleet under surveillance (…) and ensuring that we gradually return to levels of availability in line with international best practice,” he said.
The official said the government wanted to ensure that France “would have enough to get through the winter” and also hoped that the heightened surveillance would help bring down electricity prices in the country, which have reached levels records due to concerns over a power supply. shortage.
Earlier this month the government – which already owns 84% of EDF – announced it would take full control of the company in a takeover deal worth 9.7 billion euros ($9.83 billion) to help finance investments to repair its existing reactors and build new ones. .