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EDF: the bill for the forced shutdown of nuclear reactors increased by 5 billion & More Latest News Here


Posted Sep 15, 2022, 11:00 AMUpdated on Sep 15, 2022 at 6:31 PM

The number is abysmal. This Thursday, EDF announced that the bill for the forced shutdown of its reactors in 2022 would reach 29 billion euros. In its latest estimate dating from July, the EDF group evoked a drop in its gross operating surplus (Ebitda) of 24 billion euros. But since then, electricity prices have continued to soar and new delays in the commissioning of reactors have been announced.

Such a shortfall is completely unprecedented in the history of EDF. To realize the scales, in 2019, before the Covid-19 disrupted the maintenance schedule for the reactors, EDF achieved an Ebitda of nearly 17 billion euros for a turnover of 71 billion euros.

Infernal mechanics

For EDF the mechanics are infernal. Faced since the end of 2021 with a problem of stress corrosion, an unprecedented generic defect which strikes its most recent reactors in France, the group had to shut down at least twelve of its reactors as a preventive measure. However, the energy company sells in advance the electricity that it considers capable of producing in the coming year. In 2022, when electricity prices continued to soar following the enormous fluctuations of the gas market manipulated by the Kremlin, the group therefore had to buy back electricity at exorbitant prices on the markets. wholesale to serve its customers.

Aggravating fact: in the middle of the summer, EDF had to announce a postponement of the commissioning of four reactors affected by this stress corrosion phenomenon. The group mentioned several difficulties, in particular the work taking longer than expected. The consequence: EDF will have to buy back more electricity than expected on the wholesale markets in 2022. However, in August, when Gazprom was again tightening the tap on its deliveries in Europe, electricity prices reached a peak. unprecedented, well over 1,000 euros per MWh in Europe.

Deflated prices

To arrive at this figure of 29 billion, we must also add the impact of a decision taken by the public authorities at the start of the year, to the chagrin of EDF. To cushion the shock of the rise in electricity prices in France, the group was asked to increase by 20 TWh the nuclear electricity quotas sold at knockdown prices in France under the Arenh mechanism.

However, good news has slipped into the EDF communication published today. The group has confirmed its nuclear electricity production forecast for 2022. Although this is historically low, it is nevertheless essential if we are to hope to spend the winter without any problems. Furthermore, this confirmation is essential to bring down the fever that has gripped the electricity markets because several market players, including the transmission system operator RTE, do not believe that EDF is able to meet its promises.

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The Article Is In French🡽

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