Dabaa Nuclear Power Plant, Egypt

Egypt’s first nuclear power station has been controversial since its announcement in 2010 and was met with opposition from the local community who raised environmental concerns about the potentially devastating effects of the station.


Egypt’s first nuclear power station was originally approved in August 2010 under the leadership of Hosni Mubarak. The project has been controversial since its announcement and was met with opposition from the local community and tourism developers who raised environmental concerns about the potentially devastating effects of the nuclear station. The workers’ union of the Egyptian Automatic Energy Authority accused the governor of deceiving Dabaa residents, telling them that the project would take up just 2.5 square kilometres of land, while in reality it would take up 50 square kilometres owned by the authority (2).

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Basic Data
NameDabaa Nuclear Power Plant, Egypt
ProvinceMatrouh Governorate
SiteEl Dabaa
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Nuclear
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Land acquisition conflicts
Nuclear power plants
Specific CommoditiesLand
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsThe plant is expected to produce 4,800 megawatts of energy, with each of its four reactors producing 1,200 megawatts.

The first reactor is expected to commence operations in 2025, before it reaches full operation in 2029.

Russia agreed to loan Egypt US$25 billion in November 2015, financing 85 percent of the construction of the planned Dabaa nuclear power plant. The terms of the agreement stipulate that it will be repaid over a period of 22 years, beginning in 2029, at an interest rate of 3 percent.
Project Area (in hectares)5,000
Level of Investment (in USD)30,000,000,000.00
Type of PopulationUnknown
Start Date01/11/2011
Company Names or State EnterprisesRosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom) from Russian Federation
Relevant government actorsMinistry of electricity and energy (Egypt)

Ministry of investment and international cooperation (Egypt)

Supreme Council of Nuclear Energy
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersEgyptian Initiative for Personal Rights
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)UNKNOWN
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingIndustrial workers
Local government/political parties
Trade unions
Forms of MobilizationCreation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Development of alternative proposals
Land occupation
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Street protest/marches
Property damage/arson
Threats to use arms
Occupation of buildings/public spaces
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Other Environmental impacts
OtherRisk of nuclear disaster
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
OtherEnvironmental researchers argue the project stills requires a serious dialogue between scientific researchers to determine the power plant’s economic and social costs, describing the state’s study as insufficient. Questions have been raised about why the state did not build conventional gas-powered stations which can produce twice as much energy at a fraction of the cost (eg. Siemen's plants in Upper Egypt).
Project StatusUnder construction
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseCompensation
Negotiated alternative solution
Development of AlternativesIn 2012, local residents built 50 houses on the site, changed its name to New Dabaa and decided to move the cattle market there. They also said they would give 1,000 square meters for free to young people who cannot afford a place to live and rejected the option of negotiations to bring an end to their sit-in (3).

The demands put forward by the Dabaa residents’ coordination committee included land rights, compensation, jobs, training centres and the release of protesters.
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.While it appears residents are satisfied with the immediate short-term gains they were able to extract from the government, questions remain about long-term environmental safety and economic justice. Notably, ernvironmental researchers argue that the state’s study into the plant’s economic and social costs, and its overall feasiblity is insufficient. There are still concerns about safety and nuclear waste disposal.
Sources and Materials

[3] Protest at proposed nuclear construction site Egypt
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[4] Cause for celebration? From opposition to acceptance of the Dabaa nuclear power plant
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[5 ] Egypt, Russia 'complete Daba'a plant talks'
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[1] Reuters, 2010 - Radioactive material said stolen from Egyptian plant
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[6] eipr.org Daba report (in Arabic)
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[2] Dabaa nuclear station project crisis escalates
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Other Documents

Ratification of contract between Egypt and Russia Egypt’s State Council ratified the final draft of the contract between Egypt and Russia to build a nuclear power plant in Al-Dabaa
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Dabaa timeline Source: http://thecairopost.youm7.com/
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Other Commentsa_report.pdf (in Arabic)
Meta Information
Last update09/01/2018