Enel [ENEL:IM], the largest utility company in Italy, and newcleo, a next-generation nuclear power manufacturer, have announced that they will collaborate on new technology projects aimed at providing safe and stable power, as reported by Reuters on March 13. This partnership reflects a growing interest in nuclear energy as an alternative to fossil fuels, with major energy companies exploring innovative solutions with start-ups. Enel and newcleo will work on Generation IV nuclear solutions that can provide a safe and stable power source and significantly reduce radioactive waste. As part of the agreement, newcleo will secure an option for Enel to be the first investor in its first nuclear power plant, which will be built outside of Italy.
Although Italy banned nuclear energy in 1987 following the Italian nuclear power referendum, Enel currently has over 3.3 gigawatts (GW) of nuclear capacity in Spain and holds a stake of approximately 33% in the Slovak company Slovenskéelektrárne, which recently connected the first of two turbine generators to the grid at the Mochovce nuclear power plant. Meanwhile, newcleo plans to design and build the first-of-a-kind mini lead fast reactor for deployment in France by 2030.