Friday , August 19 2022

German experts warn: "Tihange 1 nuclear power plant is old and dangerous"



The Tihange 1 nuclear power plant is "outdated" and the continuation of its exploitation "extremely dangerous", said Thursday the German nuclear expert, Manfred Mertins, at a press conference in the European Parliament.

While the Federal Agency for Nuclear Control (FANC) gave the green light last week to the forthcoming restart of Tihange 1, Professor Mertins raised many security issues that this facility would present.

In a report he drafted at the request of the European Greens, he first emphasized that the international requirements for "safety and reliability" were not met.

"Tihange 1 is one of the world's oldest power plants and was constructed on the basis of security principles in the early 1970s," says Mertins. "The accidents that have occurred since then on Three Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima have shown that a significant increase in the requirements in this area was necessary," he continued, complaining in this regard about the many shortcomings he noted. the Belgian power plant.

According to him, the sharp rise of unforeseen events at Tihange 1 tells the plant's aging, which he describes as "completely irregular" handling.

In addition to the dangers related to the design of the site, the expert adds that Tihange 1 only has a "limited" basic protection against the effects of external hazards such as floods, earthquakes or even a possible crash. air.

The expert, who only looked at the technical aspects, could not give an indication of the cost of the plant to conform. According to him, however, it is "almost impossible to remedy all problems observed with tihange 1 year old".

Mr Mertin's report will be transferred to FANC and the competent authorities in Belgium, but also to neighboring countries, said Green MEP Rebecca Harms. "By the end of my year, I want to draw public attention to the risks of old reactors in Belgium," she said.

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