Thomas Paine

Thomas Paine
"These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman."

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Nuclear safety fears grow as France snubs UK watchdog

France’s slow response to ONR [the UK's Office for Nuclear Regulation] on suspect components raises question for regulator’s interaction with Chinese contractors.

report from the Guardian suggests that the ONR is unable to do its job properly because the French EDF Group is being less than honest in its responses concerning parts used in the construction of Sizewell B power station in Suffolk.

"Greenpeace France claimed that “the potential falsifications and anomalies” constituted “a major safety risk because the parts involved are large components which are essential to operating the reactors”.

This concern is then extended to the proposed building of Hinkley Point C by EDF and to the Bradwell reactor - which the Chinese hope to build on the Blackwater Estuary in Essex - if permission is granted. The Chinese nuclear industry is known to be particularly secretive.

We can only hope that this is a prelude to the cancellation of Hinkley C and the withdrawal of interest in the Chinese project along with the halting of further construction of any more nuclear power stations in the UK.

With some luck - if Theresa May has decided that this project is too costly and the risky venture it appears at first sight - provided there is sufficient substance to these accusations against EDF - these might provide a route to canceling Hinkley C without suffering substantial cancelation costs.

It is important that these funds are invested in renewable energy systems that can be bought online much quicker along with not compromising safety. Renewable energy projects also provide a substantial number of jobs.

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