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Reconsider Jaitapur N-Project: Greenpeace

Dodgy deals
By Outlook India | Mumbai, Mar 22 2011

Alleging that the proposed Jaitapur nuclear power project was based on a questionable technology, leading international NGO Greenpeace today urged the union government to reconsider it.

"After the Fukushima incident, several countries are reviewing their safety policies. We are already seeing countries pulling out of or freezing their nuclear plans, including China. Thus it is all the more relevant for India to reconsider the Jaitapur project," the Greenpeace Indian Nuclear Energy Campaigner Karuna Raina told reporters here.

"The European Pressurised water Reactor EPR) technology is based on the same principle as older reactors and, being more powerful, presents even more potential for catastrophe," claims Yves Marignac, an international consultant on nuclear and energy who spoke from France in a video conference.

"Its safety features are more complex but rely on the same confidence of engineers in their 'probabilistic approach' that has just taken a severe beating in Japan," he said.

Raina said that two top German banks-Deutsch Bank and Commerz Bank, which had earlier considered financing the Jaitapur project have decided to cancel their participation.

The international NGO had also written letters to the consortium of banks including BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, Societe Generale, Natixis and HSBC last year to reconsider their decision to finance the project.

"We have not received reply from the banks. But we understand that they are reviewing the matter," Raina said..

She also mentioned that the Export Guarantor of this international consortium of banks is reviewing the Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) of Jaitapur project as also nuclear waste disposal capability of India and local opposition through two international consultants.

Raina said that early this year, India's Nuclear Power Corporation (NPCIL) invited over a dozen large banks from around the world to participate in financing the Jaitapur project.

"The fact that Jaitapur is located on a seismic zone is of grave concern to Banks", she claimed.

Speaking from Japan, Jan Beranek, Head of the Nuclear Energy Campaign for Greenpeace International addressed the international developments in the wake of the 'nuclear emergency' in Japan.

"There is a growing acceptance of the fact that nuclear technology is inherently dangerous. The world can now take a step to stop a 'nuclear renaissance' that can lead to grave disasters and choose sustainable energy instead," he said.

"The contention that nuclear energy is seen as a possible solution to the climate crisis is false, " he said.

Greenpeace propagated for alternate energy sources and said the share of energy from coal and nuclear should be reduced.

Jaitapur nuclear power plant
The Jaitapur project plans to host two European Pressurised Reactors (EPRs) of 1,650 MWe each, with possible extension by four additional units. The Generation III+ class…

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