Germany demands France shut old nuclear plant

Germany demands France shut old nuclear plant

Fessenheim, near the German and Swiss borders, is just one of several ageing atomic plants that are unsettling France’s neighbours.

“This power plant is very old, too old to still be in operation,” said a spokesman for Environment and Nuclear Safety Minister Barbara Hendricks.

“That’s why the environment minister demands its closure at the earliest possible date,” he said, reiterating Berlin’s earlier demands.

The spokesman was reacting to media reports that claimed a 2014 incident at Fessenheim was more serious than earlier reported. Flooding had disabled electrical control systems and forced operators to launch an emergency reactor shut-down, reported public broadcaster WDR and Sueddeutsche Zeitung daily.

However, France’s nuclear safety watchdog said on Friday there was “no reason” to shut down its oldest nuclear plant. “There is no reason to close (Fessenheim) from a nuclear safety point of view,” said Sophie Letournel, head of the Strasbourg division of France’s Nuclear Safety Agency.

-more at The Local

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