Government investment in nuclear power plant financially risky: report

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The Borssele plant. Photo Nagel via Wikimedia Commons

Government support for the aging Borssele nuclear power station – the only nuclear power generation plant in the Netherlands – would have major financial risks attached, according to a report by consultancy Spring Associates.

Keeping the plant open would only be profitable if electricity prices double, the report, commissioned by environmental groups Greenpeace and Wise, said. The economic affairs ministry is looking into possible government support for the plant following a request from its power company owner, broadcaster NOS said.

Delta, has asked the state and its local authority shareholders for financial support because it expects the plant to make a loss in the coming years.




The Spring Associates report looked at three different scenarios: keeping the plant open; closing it immediately, and closing it now but not dismantling it for a decade or so.

Costs

Closing the plant and dismantling it now would cost €250m more than currently available, the report said.

Keeping it open would require investment of up to €500m if electricity prices remain the same or fall further.

The report concluded that the most economic option is to close the plant now but dismantle it in several years time. Nevertheless, even this would have a funding shortfall of €100m, the report said.

‘Borssele only contributed marginally to our energy supply and is being loosing out to clean energy,’ the environmental groups said. ‘Shutting down now, or closing the plant and demolishing it later are the best economic and ethical options.’


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