Six Greenpeace activists continue their two-day occupation of a 100-meter-high construction crane at the heart of the reactor Olkiluoto 3 construction site in Finland. The activists have positioned themselves 80 meter up in the crane. The occupation is a protest against the 1500 safety problems that have been revealed during construction of the plant.
Update (31 May):
The EU Energy Commissioner is prepared to meet with Greenpeace
duringhis visit to the nuclear reactor Olkiluoto 3 construction
Update (1 June):
We met with the EU Energy Commission today, and he agreed there
shouldbe more transparency and openness. The last three activists
havecome down and are safe. (
Policearrested the activists in the blockade, but six others
went into thesite and climbed 80 metres up the highest construction
crane. Theystayed there over night, through the next day and
through a secondchilly night with temperatures dropping into the
low teens (Centigrade).
Today,three of the activist (2 from the UK, 1 from France) made
the longclimb down, leaving their supplies for the three Finnish
activistsremaining on the crane. These last activists will try to
hold out atleast until Friday when the EU Energy Commissioner,
Andris Piebalgs, isscheduled to visit.
"Safety rules are being bent to save timeand money, said Lauri
Myllyvirta", one of the activists occupying thecrane. "This is
completely unacceptable for a nuclear power project. Anevaluation
is urgently needed so that the myth of cheap and safenuclear energy
is dispersed. Nuclear is not and cannot be a solution tothe threat
of climate change", he continued.
Police are keepingjournalists out of what is supposedly a
"secure" area - preventing themfrom taking photos of the activists
on the crane. But two otheractivists walked in and wandered around
the construction site forhours.
What's wrong at Olkiluto
- It's massively behind schedule. Construction that was supposed
to take four years will now take at least six.
- It'smassively over budget. The original cost estimate was 2.5
billioneuros. Now it's expected to top 4 billion euros.
- Theproject was supposed to require no public subsidies. In
reality it isreliant on an export guarantee financed by French
taxpayers and adirt-cheap loan from public banks.
- The originalquality requirements weren't being met - so they
were relaxed. The consequences of a faulty reactor being put into
service could bedisastrous.
And besides all that, nuclear power is anightmare of problems in
general. There's no proven solution tothe piles of waste,
encouraging more countries to use nuclear powerleads to nuclear
weapons proliferation, the plants are ready madeterrorist
targets... Nuclear is a costly and dangerous distraction fromreal
solutions to climate change like saving energy and
renewableenergy. In Finland, for example, energy consumption by
newbuildings can be cut by more than 70 percent.
That's whyconstruction should stop now - before any more money
and time iswasted. The responsible company, Teollisuuden Voima Oy,
shouldalso publish all 1,000+ quality problems, and repay the state
aid ithas received for the reactors.
More images of the occupation from Flickr.
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