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GREENPEACE

Court fines Greenpeace nuclear activists

A Swedish court on Thursday fined 29 Greenpeace activists who broke into a nuclear power plant earlier this month.

The activists — 13 Germans, eight Poles, four Danes, a Frenchman, a Finn, a Swede and a Briton — were given fines ranging from €190 to 1,600 ($230-2,000) for trespassing, according to a copy of the judgment by the court in Uppsala obtained by AFP.

In a statement, Greenpeace welcomed the fact that activists were found guilty of the lesser charge of trespassing, and not aggravated trespassing as sought by the prosecutor.

A Polish activist was found guilty of violating arms laws by using tear gas, according to the court’s decision.

On June 14th, around 50 activists entered the nuclear plant in Forsmark, 150 kilometres (95 miles) north of the capital Stockholm, to protest the reversal of a moratorium on nuclear power by the centre-right government.

Three days later, the Swedish parliament approved the decision, clearing the way for the replacement of 10 reactors that are coming to the end of their lifespan.

Operated by public group Vattenfall, the plant in Forsmark was the site of a 2006 incident when a reactor overheated.

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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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