Survey: 65 pct of respondents in Estonia would consider N-plant for security of supply

  • 2023-08-29
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – A poll commissioned by Fermi Energia from Kantar Emor in mid-August shows that 65 percent of the population of Estonia either is in favor or rather in favor of considering the deployment of a new generation small nuclear power plant to ensure the security of electricity supply.

Responses in favor accounted for 36 percent and responses "rather in favor" for 29 percent of all responses.

Eleven percent of the population are strongly against and 10 percent are rather against the nuclear option, while 14 percent of could not answer.

Just like in previous similar surveys, respondents were asked which mode of electricity production they think should be preferred in Estonia, considering the downscaling of generation from oil shale. The responses show that all carbon-free options continue to be preferred, with wind power named by 56 percent, a new-generation nuclear power plant by 52 percent and solar energy by 50 percent.

Respondents named guaranteed electricity supply in all weathers, and cheaper electricity prices, as the main advantages of a nuclear plant --  respectively 58 and 51 percent. The main disadvantages, according to the responses, are the storage of nuclear waste and the risk of an accident -- respectively 63 and 47 percent.

The percentage of supporters of nuclear energy is significantly higher among men, at 81 percent, while women are taking a more cautious stance with 54 percent in favor in the latest survey.

Among age groups, the youngest and the oldest are the strongest supporters of nuclear energy with such responses accounting for 68 percent among 15 to 34-year-olds and for 74 percent among 65 to 84-year-olds. The proportion of respondents in favor of a nuclear power plant is higher among those with higher education. While 64 percent of people with up to secondary education support considering a nuclear power plant, 71 percent of those with higher education do.

Fermi Energia, which aims to build a nuclear power plant with small modular reactors in Estonia, has conducted regular twice yearly public opinion polls to gauge attitudes towards the consideration of a new-generation small reactor nuclear power plant since 2019.