Minister "irritated" by nuclear companies after activists breach plants
The minister for environmental issues, Lena Ek of the Center party, is demanding that Vattenfall and Eon, the companies that handle operations at the Ringhals and Forsmark power plants, solve their security problems.
"I believe that it is deplorable that people could so easily climb over the fence and get inside the perimeter. To be completely honest, I am extremely irritated that these security issues haven't been solved," she says.
Police arrested some 70 Greenpeace activists Tuesday mid-morning after they had breached the outer barriers of the Forsmark nuclear power plant north of Uppsala and the Ringhals plant in southern Sweden.
Activists got over the Forsmark fence using ladders, and Ringhals, they cut holes in the fence to get in just before 8 a.m.
On its website Greenpeace called the actions a "peaceful stress test" intended to highlight security issues at the plant. Greenpeace intends the stress tests to supplement tests that EU authroities recently carried out, resulting in criticism against Forsmark in the case of a power failure, according to news agency TT.
"What the EU didn't test was what happens if unauthorized people enter the facility," said Annika Jacobsson, the director of Greenpeace in Sweden. "What we have done today shows that security is alarmingly inadequate."
Greenpeace wants the reactors to be closed immediately, on account of what they see as security issues.
According to Vattenfall, however, which is the chief owner of both Ringhals and Forsmark, Tuesday's actions demonstrated that security at both the power plants works "exactly as planned."
Forsmark information officer Claes-Inge Andersson told news agency TT that the activists had climbed over the fence "as usual".
Around 20 activists had managed to get into the Ringhals area with their bicycles. How they did this, going through a guarded gate, remains unclear.
Stefan Dahlhielm with the Halland police told news agency TT that being inside the fenced industrial area without authorization meant they had committed a crime.