No go ahead for new nuclear plant

The government will not give permission for the construction of new nuclear power plants in the Netherlands, environment minister Jacqueline Cramer said in an interview with BNR radio on Thursday.

‘The coalition government agreement is crystal clear: there will be no decisions on the construction of nuclear power plants during this administration,’ she said. Nevertheless companies are free to submit applications and these will be looked at by the government, she added.
The comments follow an announcement by energy firm Delta yesterday that it will go ahead and apply for a licence to build a new nuclear power station close to its existing facility at Borssele in Zeeland which supplies 5% of the country’s electricity.
Delta said it had made the decision after a recent invitation by Christian Democrat (CDA) parliamentary leader Pieter van Geel for energy firms to submit licence applications. Van Geel said a new nuclear power plant in the Netherlands is ‘inevitable’.
But Cramer stressed that more nuclear power is not needed to meet the country’s environmental goals for 2020. ‘We can meet our targets with the current mix of energy sources, which includes nuclear power from Borssele. That will be confirmed by a report to be published later today,’ said Cramer.
The biggest opposition party, the Socialists, want MPs to have the last word when it comes to granting nuclear power licences, reported the Financieele Dagblad this morning. At the moment this decision rests with the environment minister.
But the right-wind Liberal VVD, also in opposition, is against such a change. ‘If an application for a new plant meets the requirements, then politicians should keep out of it,’ VVD MP Halbe Zijlstra tells the paper.
The two major partners of the coalition government are also split on nuclear power. Labour wants more emphasis on wind and solar energy while the Christian Democrats are in favour.

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