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NUCLEAR

Vattenfall mulls new Swedish nuke plants

Swedish state-owned power firm Vattenfall unveiled plans at a press conference on Friday to which could result in the construction of a new nuclear power station, according to a statement.

Vattenfall confirmed reports that it is to continue a partnership with Industrikraft, a firm formed last summer with the goal of providing nuclear power to Swedish industry.

“We at Vattenfall’s are very happy to be able to continue our close partnership with representatives for Swedish industry and work together to develop energy solutions for the future,” Hans von Ulthmann, Vattenfall vice CEO said.

The firms behind Industikraft include some of Sweden’s major industrial firms, such as paper firm Holmen, SCA, Boliden and Eka Chemicals.

Industrikraft was formed less than six months before the government parties agreed to lift a moratorium on the construction of new nuclear power.

The government decision paved the way for up to ten new reactors to be built at existing nuclear power facilities.

Vattenfall explained that the next phase in the project would be to investigate and reach a decision on concrete partnership projects.

“The partnership is fully in line with our long-term strategic goal “Making Electricity Clean” and contributes to the achievement of stated climate goals,” Vattenfall CEO Lars G Josefsson said.

As Vattenfall’s owner the Swedish state retains the final say on any plans to construct new nuclear power facilities on Swedish soil.

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NUCLEAR

Russia’s ‘nuclear titanic’ sets off for Swedish coast

A Russian power plant dubbed a “nuclear Titanic” by environmental campaigners set off on Saturday on its way to Sweden’s Baltic coast.

Russia's 'nuclear titanic' sets off for Swedish coast
The Akademik Lomonosov nuclear power station sets off from St Petersburg on Saturday. Photo: Dmitri Lovetsky/TT/AP
Akademik Lomonosov, the world’s first floating nuclear power plant, left the Baltic Shipyard in St Petersburg on Saturday morning.
 
It is expected to reach the Swedish coast next week, before making its way through the narrow Öresund straits, across the Kattegat and into the North Sea. 
 
“We are following this closely through our cooperation with other countries and through our own national agencies,” Johan Friberg, Director of the Swedish Radiation Safety Agency told Sweden’s state broadcaster SVT
 
Russia’s development of a floating nuclear power plant has generated alarm among its Nordic neighbours, with Norway’s foreign minister Børge Brende last June warning that the plan to transport it fully fuelled raised “serious questions”. 
 
Karolina Skog, Sweden’s environment minister, argued last June that floating nuclear power stations created “a new type of risk”. 
 
“It is important that Russia makes every effort to fulfil the criteria of international agreements, which should be seen as applying to floating nuclear power stations as well,” she said.  
 
After a meeting in Moscow that July, Russia’s state nuclear corporation Rosatom relented on its plans to drag the reactor through the Baltic fuelled, saying that the plant would instead be fuelled in Murmansk after it had arrived in the Russian Arctic. 
 
“We will carry out the transportation through the Baltic and the Scandinavian region without nuclear fuel on board,” Alexey Likhachev told the Independent Barents Observer.  
 
Jan Haverkamp, nuclear expert for Greenpeace Central and Eastern Europe, has attacked the plant as a ‘nuclear Titanic’, and “threat to the Arctic” 
 
“Nuclear reactors bobbing around the Arctic Ocean will pose a shockingly obvious threat to a fragile environment which is already under enormous pressure from climate change,” he said in a press release
 
After the plant is fuelled and tested, it will be pulled across to Pevek on the Eastern Siberian Sea, where it will be used to power oil rigs. 
 
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