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Nuclear Power

Opening the Door for New Reactors

Published torsdag 5 februari 2009 kl 12.15
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The leaders of the government parties present their "historic agreement"
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Opposition leaders Peter Eriksson, Mona Sahlin and Lars Ohly reject the government plan

In 1980 Swedes voted overwhelmingly in a referendum to phase out nuclear power here. Parliament later set the date for closing the final reactors as 2010. That’s not going to happen. So far only two reactors have been closed, and 10 reactors remain online.

Now, two of the parties in the center-right government seem to have abandoned their opposition to nuclear energy, opening the door to building new reactors when the lifetimes of the old ones run out within a few years. In the case of the Center Party, the change apparently means abandoning a policy that has been a pillar for more than thirty years.

At a press conference Thursday, the leaders of the four parties in the coalition government announced what they called an historic agreement.

In a joint press conference the leaders of Sweden’s three opposition parties have strongly criticised the government’s agreement, and called instead for more spending on renewable energy. Social Democrat leader Mona Sahlin asked who is going to pay to deal with more radioactive waste and the damage caused by possible reactor accidents.

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