Cofrentes nuclear power plant obtains the renewal of its operating permit

18/03/2021In WANO, Power plantBy CN Cofrentes
Multimedia gallery: photo of the plant with flowering almond trees
    • The Spanish Regulator (CSN) informed the Department about its favorable decision to extend the site’s operational life due to its solid performance and safety standards.
    • Cofrentes nuclear power plant was the main power source in the Valencia Region in 2020, accounting for 46.5 % of the total, according to REE(Spain’s grid operator).
    • The plant ensures reliable and carbon-free power supply, thus contributing to the fight against climate change.

The Department of Energy Transition and Demographic Challenge granted Cofrentes nuclear power plant the renewal of its operating permit until November 2030. This decision was made after favorable assessment of the Spanish Regulator (CSN), which performed an ongoing monitoring and supervision of plant operating conditions and compliance with applicable regulations in the areas of nuclear safety and radiation protection. ; This renewal complies with the provisions of the National Integrated Plan for Energy and Climate (PNIEC).


Ever since it began commercial operation in 1984, Cofrentes NPP has operated under high safety and reliability standards, making a significant contribution to Spain’s electrical grid supply stability and guarantee.

Site results over the last decade confirm a trajectory of continuous improvement, which is the result of upgrade and investment projects and efforts by our team of professionals:

  • Nuclear safety results are optimal. According to data published by the Spanish Regulator (CSN), the station has been since 2011 in the “Licensee Response” column, best safety position within the Spanish equivalent of the Reactor Oversight Process (SISC).
  • One of the most reliable stations in the international arena: The specialized publication Nuclear Engineering International, June 2020 issue, published a ranked list of all nuclear power plants worldwide according to the historical load factor. In that list, Cofrentes NPP ranks 31 out of 440 reactors, meaning the station is one of the best in the world in terms of performance, safety and reliability.
  • It has operated over 11 years without a scram, a milestone achieved only by 40 reactors of the 450 currently in operation, according to WANO (World Association of Nuclear Operators).


Cofrentes’ power generation has continuously accounted for 3 % to 4 % of Spain’s electrical demand. As for the plant’s contribution to the Valencia Region, Cofrentes NPP represented 46.5 % of all electrical generation in 2020, according to data of REE, Spain’s grid operator.

Electricity generated by Cofrentes NPP is carbon-free, meaning the station prevents the release of five tons of CO2 into the atmosphere yearly, being a key contributor to the fight against climate change.

Cofrentes’ accumulated power generation amounts to 292,000 gigawatt hour (GWh), that’s enough energy to supply all Spanish households for four and half year.


Throughout its history, Cofrentes NPP has allocated significant sums of money to continuously upgrade the site and technologically optimize equipment, all with the aim to ensure safe, reliable and sustained performance.

Over the last decade, more than €450 million were invested to this end, favoring station readiness to ensure safe operation over the next few years.

These investment programs are an important economic and social driver for the Valencia Region, especially for development of inland areas within Valencia, in the area between Requena and Almansa (Ayora Valley).

The site has undertaken a large upgrade and digitalization initiative to optimize multiple processes, equipment and components through technological solutions currently available on the marketplace.

Over the last ten years, the station completed key projects, including some relating to the post-Fukushima action plan, which have increased the site’s response capacity to extreme beyond-design-basis events.

Some of these improvements are the commissioning of the Alternative Emergency Management Center; installation of a filtered ventilation system in the containment building and new passive hydrogen recombiners; construction of a new seismically qualified fire protection system; as well as construction of a safe storage area for portable emergency equipment, amongst other.

The renewal of Cofrentes NPP’s operating license is associated to an investment program which shall facilitate further development of the station’s upgrade and update process. The program aims to maintain the station’s high safety and reliability standards over the next ten years of operation.