Friday 26 June 2009

Greenpeace protests as Delta announces a second nuclear plant in the Netherlands

Greenpeace protesters take to the streets of Middleburg in the Netherlands to rally against a second nuclear power plant planned for the country by Delta.

Dutch unlisted utility Delta said on Thursday (June 25) it had started an application procedure to build a second nuclear power plant in the Netherlands, which it expects will become operational in 2018.
Delta outlined its plans to build the second power plant near to the Netherlands' only existing plant in Borssele, as protesters waved banners outside its headquarters calling for all nuclear power to be phased out in the country. Greenpeace activists built a wall of nuclear waste barrels in front of the Delta headquarters.

"Greenpeace is here to show that building a second nuclear power plant in the Netherlands is a really bad idea because it would create an enormous amount of nuclear waste and we don't even know what to do with the waste of the first nuclear power plant," Greenpeace campaigner, Meike Baretta, told Reuters.

The utility said it had submitted a draft proposal to the Dutch Ministry of Environment, which will lead an environmental assessment of the project. It then aims to make a formal permit request in 2011.

Bowing to pressure from environmentalists and the wider public, Dutch authorities phased out all nuclear power stations except for one in Borssele, which is owned by Delta and Dutch peer Essent and is due to stay operational until 2033.

"Nuclear power has become a topic that can be discussed again in the Netherlands," Delta chief executive Peter Boerma said at a news conference on Thursday.

The Dutch government has agreed that no new plants would be built during its mandate, which runs until 2011. But Delta expects its request to be handled in the following cabinet period.

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