Extra nuclear safety to cost up to 10 bln euros: EDF

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Recommendations by France's nuclear watchdog agency to beef up safety at plants will cost the state-owned electricity provider EDF up to 10 billion euros (13 billion dollars), a senior executive told AFP on Tuesday.

"We had scheduled investment of around 40 billion euros (over 30 years) in our 58 reactors on the basis of plant operational life of up to 60 years," Jean-Marc Miraucourt, head of engineering for nuclear facilities at Electricite de France (EDF), said.

"Our preliminary estimates are that we will be in the range of 40 to 50 billion euros (52-65 billion dollars)."

Earlier Tuesday, France's Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN) issued a raft of recommendations for coping with natural disasters in the light of the March 11 accident at the Fukushima plant in northeastern Japan.

Miraucourt said some investments would have to be brought forward.

They include the provision of backup generators, which were now likely to be installed over the next six years rather than over a longer period.

Before the Fukushima disaster, EDF estimated the overall cost of nuclear-generated electricity in France to be 46 euros (59.8 dollars) per megawatt-hour.

This is now likely to be revised to a range of 46-50 euros (59.8-65 dollars) per megawatt-hour, Miraucourt said.

© 2012 AFP

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