The Spanish government announced today that it has decided to grant an operating licence to the Garoña nuclear power plant in Northern Spain for a further four years. The plant’s current operating licence expires on 5 July 2009. The decision to allow it to continue producing electricity until 2013 is not consistent with the recommendation of the Consejo de Seguridad Nuclear (the Spanish Nuclear Safety Council) that the plant could continue operating safely for another 10 years, until 2019, Foratom said.
Santiago San Antonio, Director General of FORATOM, the association representing the European nuclear industry, expressed his disappointment at the Spanish government’s decision: “I regret that this politically motivated decision has not taken into account the report submitted by the Spanish Nuclear Safety Council, which agreed that the Garon~a plant could continue operating for ten more years, as requested by the operator. The decision will threaten Spain’s ability to meet its energy security needs and fulfil its CO2 reduction commitments under the Kyoto Protocol.”
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