The Russian government has approved proposals to bring three half-built VVER-1000 nuclear reactors (Kalinin 3, Kursk 5 and Rostov 1) into operation by the end of the decade.

The proposals are stage 1 of a wider development plan to 2010 announced by Rosenergoatom. Current financial uncertainties make it unclear where the money will be found, but Rosenergoatom’s Yevgeny Ignatenko has said funding will come mainly from internal sources.

Stage two of the plan will see the commissioning of unit 2 at Rostov, unit 1 at a new plant in Sosnovy Bor, unit 6 of Novoronezh, and two heat-only district heating units at Voronezh. In addition, Russia will commission its first floating nuclear plant to be based at Pevek in Chukotka.

By 2010, the first BN-800 fast breeder unit will be built in the South Urals as well as unit 7 at Novovoronezh, units 5 and 6 at Kola and unit 5 at Leningrad. There may also be a further unit at Kursk and a second floating nuclear plant for the far east. Rosenergoatom also plans to extend by 5-10 years the service life of some first-generation units reaching the end of their working life in 2003.