'NUCLEAR DANGER' is the message Greenpeace Spain took to the country's Cofrentes nuclear energy plant yesterday as activists scaled one of the plant's cooling towers.
Greenpeace are demanding that Spain's Nuclear Security Council refuse to renew the plant's permit to operate - which expires on March 19 – because of the extremely poor levels of security at Cofrentes.
The aging Cofrentes reactor is in bad shape. It has an endless list of bugs and unresolved security issues. Among the many weaknesses it has identified, Greenpeace has expressed concerns about the fire-fighting systems, access to the control room, the increasing radioactivity received by maintenance workers, and delays in the analysis of events and incidents.
Meanwhile, take a look at the renewable energy sector in Spain. According to a study by the Institute for Energy Diversification and Saving of Energy released in November last year, the number of current direct jobs provided by the renewables industry is more than 75,000. Taking into account the official renewable growth forecast, Spain can expect to see a further 128,000 created by 2020. On the other hand, the nuclear sector in 2005 had just 4,124 employees, of which 52.8% were the permanent staff at nuclear power plants.
Spain is a leading nation when it comes to the production of renewable energy. It is showing we can live in a world without nuclear energy.
More information in Spanish as well as more photographs of the action are available on Greenpeace Spain's website.