Verhagen: nuclear waste transports necessary

8th June 2011, Comments 0 comments

A nuclear waste shipment from the Dutch nuclear power station at Borssele to a reprocessing plant in France on Tuesday sparked a protest action by Greenpeace activists. In a reaction, Economic Affairs Minister Maxime Verhagen said in parliament on Wednesday that the transport, the first in five years, was absolutely necessary.

Minister Verhagen said he had issued the necessary permits because the storage basin at Borssele was nearly full. “There had not been a shipment of spent fuel rods in five years. So it was also in our own best interest that the transports took place.”

The minister said confidential agreements with Belgium on nuclear transports would be made available to parliament. Earlier, Green Left MP Liesbeth van Tongeren had requested the information because she could not find a contingency plan for nuclear waste shipments.

The train carrying the Borssele spent fuel rods arrived in Normandy on Wednesday. From there they will be taken to the reprocessing plant at La Hague by lorry. After reprocessing, most of the waste material can again be used as fuel. The remaining nuclear waste will be stored in Flushing.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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