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Indian Oil in Talks With NPCIL to Build Small Nuclear Reactors for its Refineries

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Indian Oil in Talks With NPCIL to Build Small Nuclear Reactors for its Refineries

As several bigger projects face delays, policymakers are promoting small-scale nuclear technology with a capacity of up to 300 megawatts.

Indian Oil is reportedly in preliminary talks with Nuclear Power Corporation to build small nuclear units, seen as a cost-effective alternative to larger plants.

According to a Bloomberg report, the two are exploring a partnership for small modular reactors, or SMRs, for clean power. As several bigger projects face delays, policymakers, the report added, are promoting small-scale nuclear technology with a capacity of up to 300 megawatts, which is quicker to build and easier to adjust to the requirements of the grid.

Subsequently private firms may be allowed to manage and operate reactors.

India, according to Reuters report, is mulling inviting private firms to invest about $26 billion in its nuclear energy sector to increase the amount of electricity from sources that don’t produce carbon dioxide emissions.

This is the first time New Delhi is pursuing private investment in nuclear power. The funding would help India to achieve its target of having 50% of its installed electric generation capacity use non-fossil fuels by 2030, up from 42% now.

The government is in talks with at least five private firms including Reliance, Tata Power, Adani Power, and Vedanta to invest around $5.30 billion each.

Besides Indian Oil, NTPC and ONGC are among companies exploring nuclear opportunities. India produces about three-quarters of its electricity from coal, while nuclear accounts for about 3% of the generation. China and Russia run SMR units, while some other countries are preparing for their commissioning, the International Atomic Energy Agency said.

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