Nuclear authority continues Norwegian threat investigation / News / The Foreigner

Nuclear authority continues Norwegian threat investigation. French nuclear reprocessing plant La Hague is under scrutiny by Norway’s nuclear authority following recent concerns over Sellafield in the UK. Norway has planned to send high-level waste (HLW) from its Halden and Kjeller nuclear reactors, with politicians reacting sharply to previously unknown reports concerning current levels of intermediate stocks at the plant. Unknown In an email statement to The Foreigner last week, Minister of the Environment Erik Solheim wrote, “We have received the information that considerable volumes of liquid high level waste are stored in La Hague through Norwegian media.

lahague, sellafield, eriksolheim, helgesolumlarsen, norwegianradiationprotectionauthority, nilsboehmer, bellona



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Nuclear authority continues Norwegian threat investigation

Published on Monday, 9th May, 2011 at 13:33 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 12th May 2011 at 14:57.

French nuclear reprocessing plant La Hague is under scrutiny by Norway’s nuclear authority following recent concerns over Sellafield in the UK.

La Hague nuclear reprocessing plant
La Hague nuclear reprocessing plant
Photo: Truzguiladh/Wikimedia Commons


Norway has planned to send high-level waste (HLW) from its Halden and Kjeller nuclear reactors, with politicians reacting sharply to previously unknown reports concerning current levels of intermediate stocks at the plant.

Unknown

In an email statement to The Foreigner last week, Minister of the Environment Erik Solheim wrote, “We have received the information that considerable volumes of liquid high level waste are stored in La Hague through Norwegian media.

“This information is new, and the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA) is now in close contact with French authorities to verify this information and to get a better picture of the composition of this waste and the risks it may represent. I will not speculate in what risk waste stored in La Hague may represent for Norway before these facts are on the table and have been assessed by our authorities. But Norway will, naturally, not process our radioactive waste at La Hague before the new information is assessed.”

NRPA Head of Section Ingar Amundsen says they are in contact with their counterparts in France to try to get more information about reprocessing activities at La Hague.

“We are having a meeting with them at the end of May/beginning of June. Essentially, all running nuclear power plants pose a risk if a serious accident occurs.”

There were fears as much as 1,200 cubic metres could be stored in tanks at the facility, but owners AREVA claim the maximum amount is 400 at any given time, dependent upon the production schedule.

Helge Solum Larsen
Helge Solum Larsen
Norwegian Liberal Party/Flickr
“The existence of an intermediate stock is normal in the case of an industrial activity, in particular with the treatment and recycling process.”

Answers

Nils Bøhmer, nuclear physicist at the Bellona Foundation, says he visited the plant last summer, and levels are typical for the industry standard.

“These are similar to what we demand from Sellafield, and have been stable since liquid vitrification was started in the ‘90s.”

However, Helge Solum Larsen, 1st Deputy Leader for the Liberal Party (V), is not satisfied about the plant, especially following last week’s arrest near Sellafield. British police suspected the five men of having broken the UK’s anti-terror law, but have since released them without charge.

“We must now get a similar report about the risks to the one we received concerning Sellafield. It will also provide clearer answers about how much and how securely the waste is stored, and where. We should not continue contributing to La Hague’s reprocessing by sending our waste there,” he says.

Minister Solheim will be answering a written question from the Party about La Hague in Parliament today.




Published on Monday, 9th May, 2011 at 13:33 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 12th May 2011 at 14:57.

This post has the following tags: lahague, sellafield, eriksolheim, helgesolumlarsen, norwegianradiationprotectionauthority, nilsboehmer, bellona.





  
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