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Viktor Orbán Delivers Speech at the Nuclear Energy Summit in Brussels

Hungary Today 2024.03.21.

The questions mount towards how we can produce large amounts of electricity in a cheap, safe, and environmentally friendly way. The answer is clear, only electricity produced from nuclear energy can meet all these requirements at the same time, said Prime Minister Viktor Orbán at the first meeting of the European Nuclear Association in Brussels, as reported by Magyar Nemzet.

At the event, the Prime Minister said:

Hungary has been using nuclear energy for almost five decades, which provides a stable basis for the security of our energy supply.”

“Half of the electricity produced is provided by our nuclear power plant, which covers a third of our electricity needs,” he pointed out.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán (R) in the company of Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic (L) and Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico (C). Photo:  MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office/Zoltán Fischer

“Based on these experiences, we decided not only to maintain our existing capacities, but also to invest more in nuclear energy and increase its share in the national electricity supply to seventy percent,” stressed Orbán.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán (R) with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic (L), Croatian Andrej Plenkovic (2nd from L) and Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico (2nd from R). Photo: MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office/Zoltán Fischer

He continued by highlighting that in Hungary, 2,400 megawatts of new capacity will be connected to the grid at the beginning of the next decade, making it possible to avoid the import of three and a half billion cubic meters of natural gas per year. According to the Prime Minister, our annual carbon dioxide emissions will decrease by seventeen million tons, which is one and a half times more than the emissions of the entire Hungarian and transport sector, and one and a half times more than what all the forests in Hungary can absorb.

With former Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (L) and Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk (R). Photo: MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office/Zoltán Fischer

The Prime Minister expressed his joy at the fact that regardless of the geopolitical difficulties, there is still extensive international, professional, and scientific cooperation in the field of nuclear energy. Orbán had also pointed to the fact that Russia became the number one supplier of uranium to the United States last year, and many American, German, French, Swedish, Swiss, and even Austrian subcontractors are working with Russian contractors on the nuclear expansion project.

It is in the interest of all of us that nuclear power does not become a hostage to geopolitical conflicts, hypocrisy, and ideological debates,”

he highlighted.

The summit, co-chaired by Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Rafael Mariano Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), is the highest-level meeting to date that deals exclusively with the topic of nuclear energy. The summit was held on March 21, 2024, after nuclear energy was given a historic role in the global assessment adopted at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) held in Dubai in December 2023, which, along with other low-carbon energy sources, recommended the acceleration of nuclear energy use.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán (L) in the company of Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson (C). Photo:  MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office/Zoltán Fischer

Nuclear technologies can play an important role in the transition to clean energy, as nuclear energy is the second most important source of low-emission electricity after hydropower, said the president of the European Commission in her speech. In a surprise u-turn from the anti-nuclear policies of the German government that she was previously part of, Ursula von der Leyen emphasized: in order for nuclear energy to significantly contribute to the realization of climate neutrality objectives, the most important task is to secure and accelerate new investments.

Renewable energy sources are predominantly supplemented by nuclear energy and will form the backbone of the European Union’s electricity production by 2050, von der Leyen said, then emphasized that nuclear energy is currently the largest source of electricity in the EU with a share of 22 percent.

Ursula von der Leyen. File Photo: Facebook European Commission

She stated that in order for the EU to meet the goals set in the Paris climate agreement – according to which it wants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 percent compared to 1990 levels by 2030 – it is necessary that the contribution of nuclear energy to electricity security is recognized by the governments properly evaluated and supported.

Critical Components Ready for Paks II Nuclear Power Plant
Critical Components Ready for Paks II Nuclear Power Plant

Minister Péter Szijjártó held a press conference on the progression of the project.Continue reading

Via Magyar Nemzet, MTI; Featured Image: MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office/Zoltán Fischer

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