France says nuclear plant overruns 'unacceptable'

| | Paris
  • 0

France says nuclear plant overruns 'unacceptable'

Monday, 30 September 2019 | AFP | Paris

France says nuclear plant overruns 'unacceptable'

The French government on Sunday slammed as "unacceptable" delays and cost overruns at nuclear power plant projects undertaken by state utility firm EDF, including Britain's controversial Hinkley Point.

Finance and Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said an independent audit would be launched and warned that France's nuclear industry could not be a "state within a state".

Electricite de France (EDF) had said last week that costs for Hinkley Point C were now estimated at 21.5-22.5 billion pounds ($26.8-28.1 billion), a rise of 1.9-2.9 billion pounds over previous estimates.

A similar EPR third generation nuclear power plant project in Olkiluoto in Finland is now 10 years behind the initial schedule, as is the Flamanville project in western France.

"The government issued warnings several months ago," Le Maire told LCI and RTL TV, saying the independent audit would be delivered on October 31.

"All this drifting is unacceptable. It is not up to the level of what EDF represents and the French expertise in the sector." "I can understand that there could be a technical issue or a realisation problem. But when the delays accumulate you need to look at it independently and draw the conclusions," he said, warning of "consequences at all levels".

The novel European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) system aims to improve safety and efficiency. The French government owns a majority 83.7 percent stake in EDF.

EDF is part of a French-Chinese consortium awarded the two-reactor Hinkley Point project in 2016 despite criticism from green groups and cost warnings from experts.

It is supposed to provide seven percent of Britain's total power needs, according to the government. It is scheduled to start producing electricity in 2025 and has a projected operational lifetime of 60 years.

State Editions

Congressmen protesting  against farm laws held

29 September 2020 | PNS | Lucknow

Coronavirus spreading in jails

29 September 2020 | PNS | Lucknow

PM to address 2 public meetings in HP on Oct 3

29 September 2020 | Agencies | Chandigarh

Saini appears before SIT

29 September 2020 | PNS | Chandigarh

UP bags 8  GKRA awards

29 September 2020 | PNS | Lucknow

Sunday Edition

Politics in the workplace

27 September 2020 | Bhavna Dalal | Agenda

Krishna’s Manifests in Icons

27 September 2020 | Dr Asha Goswami | Agenda

Ways to stay productive

27 September 2020 | Dr Binay Singh | Agenda

When we accept God...

27 September 2020 | Ajit Kumar Bishnoi | Agenda

Astroturf | Seeds of future are in present

27 September 2020 | Bharat Bhushan Padmadeo | Agenda

Fantastic Moment

27 September 2020 | Shalini Saksena | Sunday Pioneer