Slovakia Promotes Idea for Nuclear Power Forum within the EU

9. März 2007, 00:00

Slovakia has called on the EU to create a Nuclear Power Forum, which should lift the tacit ban on this issue and serve...

Slovakia has called on the EU to create a Nuclear Power Forum, which should lift the tacit ban on this issue and serve as the platform for outspoken nuclear power policy making. This reads a letter Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico sent to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

The new authoritys primary purpose would be to broker talks between the key actors - the European Commission, EU governments and companies with power assets - on best practices and proposals for future development of the nuclear sector.

The proposal is in line with Slovakias resolve to boost domestic nuclear power capacities. The countrys government and the dominant power generating monopoly Slovenske Elektrarne have reached a general agreement on completing two nuclear reactors at Mochovce nuke plant through 2012.

The letter reached Barroso ahead of the EU two-day energy summit starting Thursday, whose highlight is the debate on placing the share of power from renewable energy sources to 20 per cent through 2020.

Sparks of friction are to be expected at the forum as 12 EU member states have previously criticised the proposed target and at least half that number intend to put nuclear power as a solid instrument in keeping CO2 emissions in check.

While Slovakia, the Czech Republic and France would be the avid proponents of nuclear energy if such an ambitious target is to be set, Austria, Denmark and Ireland are set to take the opposite line of dispute.

At present, 15 member states operate nuclear power facilities, Slovakia included.

In response to Ficos letter, a spokesperson of the European Commission said the idea was interesting and mirrors one received from the Czech Republic. He warned, however, that the forum will not be put up for discussion immediately.

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