Thursday 24 May 2018

Nuclear plant assessment has 'serious flaws'

Hinkley Point C nuclear power station site is seen near Bridgwater in Britain. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth
Hinkley Point C nuclear power station site is seen near Bridgwater in Britain. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

The impact of a nuclear accident on Ireland was never considered by the British government while planning a controversial €20bn nuclear power plant currently under construction.

Despite Ireland being just 240km from the Hinkley Point C power plant in Somerset, the safety risk assessment contained "serious flaws" and the State was completely omitted from an assessment of the impacts that might arise following a severe accident, a Dáil committee was told.

Rising sea levels forecast as climate change takes hold increase the risk of a catastrophic event, emeritus professor of geography at Maynooth University John Sweeney said, adding possible effects on Ireland were "inadequately considered" and gave "cause for concern".

Hinkley is one of several new nuclear power stations planned across the UK, and is expected to produce 7pc of total electricity demand. Critics insist the reactor is an "unproven design" and will result in high prices.

Irish Independent

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