Belgian environmental organisations very critical of nuclear power plant extension

Environmental organisations Greenpeace, Inter-Environnement Wallonie and the Bond Beter Leefmilieu stated on Friday that the agreement with Engie on the extension of two nuclear reactors “is the biggest gift for Engie.”

According to these organisations, citizens risk paying three times for this new move. Firstly, for the financial risks linked to the shared operation of the reactors. Secondly, they will pay for an increase in the quantity of nuclear waste, as Engie will benefit from the capping of its contribution to the costs of managing this waste. Finally, citizens will also need to pay for fossil fuel subsidies for gas-fired power plants, especially when nuclear power generation is lower than expected.


The fact that the State will become a shareholder in the company in which the two reactors will be placed also shows, in the eyes of environmentalists, that nuclear power is not profitable.

“The bankruptcy of nuclear energy has a major impact on our energy future”, explained Jan Vande Putte of Greenpeace.
“Both nuclear energy and fossil fuels today need heavy subsidies and result in astronomical bills for our families and businesses. Only energy efficiency measures and a more ambitious transition to renewable energies will provide a solution. lasting to this problem.”

The organisation “Stop Nucléaire” called the “agreement as bad as that of Dr Faustus with the Devil,” pointing the finger not only to the financial risks of the operation but also the responsibility of the State in the event of an accident.

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Principle agreement on nuclear reactors: Belgium will share in profits
An agreement in principle has been reached between the government and Engie on the extension of the Doel 4 and Tihange 3 nuclear power plants. The aim is to start up both reactors in November 2026. This was announced on Friday by Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Minister of Energy Tinne Van der Straeten. ​​The agreement is a reaction to the shifting geopolitical climate considering the energy supply in Belgium and neighbouring countries. Together both reactors are good for 2 GW of nuclear capacity.




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