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The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

This week: unrelenting propaganda that nuclear power is ”green”

Coronavirus news? I confess to not being able to keep up with the latest on this. More infections in Brazil, other South American countries, Europe, …. USA? Vaccine rollouts happening, amid dissent….

Climate change keeps rolling on – are we near the ”tipping point”, where ocean currents weaken, affected by melting ice in the Norrth Atlantic ?

NUCLEAR. It might seem that nothing is happening. BUT, the relentless and well-funded nuclear lobby is now working overtime. They find the media a good sucker. You see, all you need to believe is that ”only the experts can have an opinion on this”. Never mind the fact that blind Freddie could see that ”nuclear power as a cure for climate change” is like ”cigarette smoking as a cure for obesity”. Mainstream journalists just play safe, regurgitating the spin of the nuclear lobby.

As it will be gargantuanally costly to clean up the nuclear industry – politicians find it easier to embrace it instead. Especially in France, where “This atomic energy is like a huge corpse hidden in a family house” see article below – in which France leads the push for a pro nuclear decision by the European Commission by 21st April.

As for America, from the nuclear point of view, Joe Biden could be seen as more sinister than Trump – carrying out the same policies, but with an appealing and decent presentation.

Anyway, it’s a revelation to me, as in every country, journalists are vigourously touting nuclear as essential to fix climate change, -presumably because it’s ”safer for” them to do this, when they really know little about it.

INTERNATIONAL

No greenwashing’: Fossil gas and nuclear must not be defined as clean, ministers tell IEA summit. Nuclear power, eligible for green investments? An environmental and climatic aberration, based on cynical and dishonest reasoning!.

Fusion nuclear reactors – a boondoggle run by bureaucrats. Every type of nuclear fusion still requires more energy put in than it gives out!

The IAEA is getting worried about nuclear safety, in view of climate extremes, and especially of earthquakes.

SOUTH ASIA. Nuclear weapons potential triggers escalation in South Asia.


EUROPE
.
 By 21st April, will the European Commission be sucked in by a shonky anonymous report that pretends that nuclear power is ”green”?

FRANCE. Nuclear power- the killer of our futureThe “Sortir du nuclear” Network denounces the attempts by France and the industrial nuclear lobby to include this technology in the European taxonomy (classification) project supposed to define “green” investments. France’s President Macron leads East European leaders in the pack to get the European leaders to call nuclear power ”green”.

CANADA. Secretive and corrupt plan to make Labrador, Canada, the world’s nuclear toilet. Labrador’s Inuit Regional Government kept in the dark about nuclear waste dump plan. Busting the spin that promotes ‘Small Nuclear Reactors’.

USA. 

Joe Biden’s support for the nuclear industry is stated, but it’s not clear. Global nuclear industry delighted that Joe Biden pushes ”new nuclear for jobs”.

The massive tax-payer funding for security of nuclear reactors – and this will be just as bad for Small Nuclear Reactors. U.S. nuclear weapons are aging quickly. With few spare parts, how long can they last? U.S. Democrats introduce Bill to stop nuclear missile funding, switch funding to universal Covid vaccine development.

NRC considers nuclear reactors running for 100 years (saves the big costs of decommissioning)

Montana bill wrongly overturns right of voters to decide nuclear energy

New Mexico sues US over proposed nuclear waste storage plans. Boom in ”decommissioning” nuclear reactors brings worries about financial costs, and safety.

Review: How government, corporations shaped our ‘Nuclear Suburbs’Ohio nuclear bailout ends – showing the folly of subsidising nuclear power. Lawsuit over Alabama nuclear plant appears headed to trial after judge’s ruling. 

US, Iran say they’ll begin indirect talks on nuclear program.

The long -term job of cleaning up the radioactive corpse of the only (short-term) nuclear-powered cruise ship.

 Florida declares state of emergency due to potential radioactive material leak.

UK. Boris Johnson’s decision to increase nuclear warheads -concern around the world and within UK. ”Bairns not Bombs”Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon speaks out. Concerted opposition in Scotland to nuclear weapons, and to banks lending for them. 

Universities in UK captured by the nuclear weapons industry.

 Unexploded WW2 bomb on seabed uncomfortably close to Hinkley Point C nuclear station.

 No need for a nuclear reactor at Bradwell. In view of the pandemic situation, the examination of Sizewell C nuclear project should be delayed.

IRELAND. An example of the international aspect of nuclear developments – Ireland’s complaint to Britain on the Sizewell nuclear risks.

ISRAELNew Work Underway at Israeli Nuclear Site.

NIGER. Failed AREVA, failed ORANO leave a toxic uranium mess in Niger.

AUSTRALIA. 

Labor Party’s platform on uranium/nuclear and radioactive waste issues. Scott Morrison’s $billion missile spend, a gift to foreign war companies and their sponsor, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, (ASPI). Greenland might reject Australian-Chinese company Greenland Minerals in its bid to mine rare earths.

April 5, 2021 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

By 21st April, will the European Commission be sucked in by a shonky anonymous report that pretends that nuclear power is ”green”?

Ouest France 2nd April 2021, https://www.ouest-france.fr/environnement/climat/finance-verte-il-n-y-a-plus-de-limites-a-l-obsession-francaise-pour-le-nucleaire-70a744b2-9190-11eb-954a-acefbc765f05

Luxembourg’s Energy Minister, Claude Turmes, does not like the turn taken by the European Commission’s future tool to direct investments towards the low-carbon transition, called “taxonomy”. States, including France and Hungary, are campaigning to include nuclear and gas. At the expense of the climate emergency.

Europe will be the first carbon neutral continent in 2050, announced in December Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission. To achieve this, its Green Pact notably includes taxonomy, which must direct investments. Claude Turmes, Minister of Energy of Luxembourg and former MEP for the Greens, is worried about the turn of the future tool.

The European Commission will soon say what is and what is not “a green investment”. What does this green taxonomy represent?

Money is the crux of the matter, even for climate change. It is important, alongside regulatory laws that governments or Europe can make, to direct billions of euros of investment towards appropriate infrastructure for the environment.

This work was well underway. The Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance (TEG) in March 2020 produced a report, widely accepted by the financial world, to which this taxonomy is first addressed.

Of course, financiers do not form a homogeneous whole, but the major central banks, especially since Christine Lagarde took over the reins of the European Central Bank, now know everything about carbon risk.

Since then, a report has been published in favor of nuclear power, which Luxembourg rejects. How do you react ?

I’m not surprised. The JCR (Joint Research Center), commissioned for this report, was created by Euratom and 25% of its activities are nuclear. But it is extraordinary to have withdrawn the evaluation of this dossier from a group that had worked transparently to hand it over to another, pro-nuclear and which the authors do not agree to sign. What regime are we in, to publish an anonymous report?

Nuclear power [purports to be] is low-carbon energy, with many jobs, which France defends …

Yes, Emmanuel Macron signed a letter with Hungarian Orban or Kazcynski’s Poland for the European executive… I will leave aside the issue of human rights and the questionable attachment of these countries to the EU. The fact remains that the French government is making an alliance with pro-gas, pro-fossils, for the cause of nuclear power. There are no longer any limits to the French obsession with nuclear power which, economically, is dead.

Off-shore wind power is half the cost, takes half the time and is creating as many jobs, without risk for the population. By persisting, France is missing out on a market of the future. With the Benelux, Germany and Denmark, we have agreed on a target of 350 GW (the French nuclear fleet: 60 GW) in the North Sea and the Baltic. And the United States is coming.

How can we get along between European neighbors, some of whom are pro and others anti-nuclear?

From my window, I can see the Cattenom power station (in Thionville, in Moselle). Building nuclear reactors at the borders, I don’t call it good neighborliness. We have known from Prime Minister Tony Blair’s 2003 White Paper affair that the British military sector lobbied to save nuclear (in 2007) and submarine engines. This link between civilian and military nuclear power, no politician will ever say it in France.

This atomic energy is like a huge corpse hidden in a family house. Unlike Germany, France has not yet dismantled a large power plant and has not provided enough money to do so, this was the subject of Barbara Pompili’s report in 2018 (when she was deputy). When this is done, the real cost will be apparent. For now, we bury it and it’s the big headlong rush.

Gas could also be classified as green under certain conditions …

When you know the climate emergency, it is sad to see the taxonomy, which can make the EU a world leader on climate, destroyed by lobbying work. The beauty of taxonomy is its clarity that we risk losing by including conditions, like some plants, but not others. The financial world and the citizens who want to invest their money in green funds need clarity

All this lobbying is a diversion. But we don’t have time anymore. We must move quickly on renewable energies, energy security, infrastructure and electric public transport, and green the cities against the heat waves that are coming. Money invested elsewhere is a problem.

The Commission is due to return its copy on April 21. Do anti-nuclear European countries like Luxembourg plan to react?

We see that the Foratom lobby and the French government are already claiming victory. We hope that the President of the Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has understood that this will seriously “froth”, that she is risking a lot, by accepting nuclear power. We’re getting organized, we won’t give up.

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France’s President Macron leads East European leaders in the pack to get the European leaders to call nuclear power ”green”

Oil Price 3rd April 2021, Together with Eastern European leaders, French President Emmanuel Macron
co-signed a letter calling on the European Commission to include nuclear energy in its Green taxonomy. The letter was written on March 19th and was public after a European Council summit held on March 25th.

The European taxonomy establishes an extensive list of “sustainable” activities which will help achieve the carbon neutrality target by 2050 and will benefit from targeted investments. In the framework of that classification, nuclear energy currently finds itself under the “does not harm” label,which doesn’t make it eligible for investments with lower tax rates.

https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/France-Pushes-To-Make-Nuclear-Power-Mainstream-In-Europe.html

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Global nuclear industry delighted that Joe Biden pushes ”new nuclear for jobs”

US President includes nuclear in American Jobs Plan

US President Joseph Biden yesterday announced a USD2 trillion jobs, infrastructure and clean energy plan to reshape the country’s economy. Among the proposed investments to tackle climate change, the American Jobs Plan calls for funding for the development of advanced nuclear reactors .………

Industry welcomes plan,  World Nuclear News, 01 April 2021

The Nuclear Innovation Alliance (NIA) welcomed Biden’s announcement of the American Jobs Plan……….

NIA’s Executive Director Judi Greenwald said:

The technology-inclusive American Jobs Plan specifically incorporates advanced nuclear energy as eligible for funding for demonstration projects, building on ongoing activities by the Department of Energy and industry to demonstrate the commercial viability of next generation nuclear power.”

In a joint statement, American Nuclear Society President Mary Lou Dunzik-Gougar and CEO Craig Piercy said, “The nuclear energy industry supports high-paying jobs that last decades and a growing world market for small modular and advanced reactor designs promise job growth for communities across the US.”

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Joe Biden’s support for the nuclear industry is stated, but it’s not clear

Nuclear should be considered part of clean energy standard, White House says

Biden’s plan goes beyond most states’ definitions of clean power. Ars Technica

TIM DE CHANT – 4/3/2021   More details have emerged about the climate and energy priorities of President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan, and they include support for nuclear power and carbon capture with sequestration (CCS).

In a press conference yesterday with reporters, White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy said the administration would seek to implement a clean energy standard that would encourage utilities to use greener power sources. She added that both nuclear and CCS would be included in the administration’s desired portfolio. The clean energy standard adds a climate dimension to the Biden administration’s recently announced infrastructure plan, seeking to put the US on a path to eliminating carbon pollution.

………. But nuclear has been criticized by some environmentalists over its radioactive waste and concerns about meltdowns.


Typically, state standards do not include nuclear in their portfolios. Rather, they usually focus on renewable energy sources like wind, solar, and hydropower. McCarthy did not provide details about how far a CES would go in supporting nuclear power. It’s possible that the policy may only cover plants that are currently operating, but it may also extend to include new plants. The former is more likely than the latter, though, given the challenges and costs involved in building new nuclear capacity……… https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/04/nuclear-should-be-considered-part-of-clean-energy-standard-white-house-says/

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Living with Chernobyl — Beyond Nuclear International

The nuclear disaster 35 years on

Living with Chernobyl — Beyond Nuclear International

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The U.S. War on China: Panda Huggers and Panda Sluggers by K. J. Noh — Rise Up Times

“Unless we do something about it, President Biden’s doctrine toward China will likely be a continuation of the noxious U.S. arc of history, ideology, and planning.”

The U.S. War on China: Panda Huggers and Panda Sluggers by K. J. Noh — Rise Up Times

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China, Total Information Warfare: Sinophobia, by K. J. Noh — Rise Up Times

“While China demonstrates the possibility of multi-polarity, or the sharing of power, the U.S. is committed to unipolarity: its domination of world power at any cost.”

China, Total Information Warfare: Sinophobia, by K. J. Noh — Rise Up Times

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April 4 Energy News — geoharvey

Opinion: ¶ “Strong Winds Off The Coast Could Power A Clean Energy Economy In North Carolina” • To learn the direction of energy production in North Carolina, look to a weather vane. Last year, Duke Energy and Dominion Energy of Virginia called off the 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Now the weather vane points toward the […]

April 4 Energy News — geoharvey

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Noam Chomsky: Biden’s Foreign Policy Is Largely Indistinguishable From Trump’s — Rise Up Times

“Clearly what is needed is diplomacy and negotiations on contested matters, and real cooperation on such crucial issues as global warming, arms control, future pandemics — all very severe crises that know no borders.”

Noam Chomsky: Biden’s Foreign Policy Is Largely Indistinguishable From Trump’s — Rise Up Times

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Florida declares state of emergency due to potential radioactive material leak

FLORIDA DECLARES STATE OF EMERGENCY DUE TO POTENTIAL RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL LEAK,    600 MILLION GALLONS OF POLLUTED WATER MIGHT SOON FLOOD A MASSIVE STRETCH OF THE STATE. https://futurism.com/the-byte/florida-declares-state-emergency-due-potential-radioactive-material-leak, 4 Apr 21,

Imminent And Uncontrolled

Florida has declared a state of emergency in Manatee County after officials announced a wastewater pond containing radioactive material is at risk of collapsing.

Governor Ron DeSantis issued the state of emergency for the region on Saturday, according to CBS News. Officials at the Manatee County Public Safety Department declared a mandatory evacuation notice for the area “due to the imminent uncontrolled release of wastewater.”

Radioactive Wastewater

The wastewater originated from the former Piney Point phosphate processing plant where a reservoir containing stacks of phosphogypsum — radioactive waste created by processing phosphate ore into fertilizer — experienced a leak.

A portion of the containment wall at the leak site shifted laterally signifying that structural collapse could occur at any time,” said Manatee Director of Public Safety Jake Saur to CBS News

Officials fear the leak could potentially flood the area with radioactive wastewater and have begun the process of releasing 22,000 gallons of water a minute out of a retention pond to alleviate the stress on the containment site. 

“We are talking about the potential of about 600 million gallons within a matter of seconds and minutes leaving that retention pool and going around the surrounding area,” said Manatee County Administrator Scott Hopes in a press conference.

If and when the containment reservoir breaks completely, it could lead to a generational destruction of the surrounding region. It’s a tough pill to swallow — but state officials need to wield a firmer hand when it comes to regulating, you know, radioactive wastewater that’s upstream from an entire county of people. 

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The IAEA is getting worried about nuclear safety, in view of climate extremes, and especially of earthquakes

New IAEA Publications Highlight Importance of Seismic Safety for Nuclear Power Plants, Ovidiu Coman, IAEA Department of Nuclear Safety and Security,IAEA  25 Mar 21, 

The importance of withstanding earthquakes and their consequences has proven to be critical for the safety of nuclear power plants, and seismic re-evaluation has been identified as an important step towards reducing the risks facing these plants. After the Fukushima Daichii accident in 2011, which was caused by a tsunami following an earthquake, many countries performed comprehensive safety and risk evaluations of their nuclear power plants against external hazards.

The specific seismic risk for each nuclear facility is vital to identify when developing and implementing the safety requirements for these plants, and two recent IAEA publications provide assistance to national experts on implementing improved seismic safety.

The IAEA is contributing to continued enhancement of nuclear safety globally by promoting best international practices and experience. From this perspective, we should consider the increased likelihood of rare natural events, which have been more common in recent years, and postulate that they may occur during a facility’s lifetime,” said Greg Rzentkowski, Director of the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Installation Safety.

The IAEA’s Safety Report No. 103 Methodologies for Seismic Safety Evaluation for Nuclear Installations and TECDOC-1937 Probabilistic Safety Assessment for Seismic Events support implementation of the IAEA Safety Standards based on updated technologies and state-of-the-art practices. Both provide detailed technical guidance for the assessment of seismic safety for nuclear installations.


“Seismic hazard is a key contributor to overall plant risk evaluation. At the same time, observations regarding extreme seismic events are rather limited, and predictive models are subject to considerable uncertainties,” Rzentkowski said. “Yet, we have to anticipate such events and consider corresponding risks in the design process of nuclear power plants to ensure adequate protection of people and the environment.” ………………………

Dennis Henneke from the Chief Engineer’s Office of General Electric-Hitachi added: “The most advanced reactors, including small modular reactors, require either a design phase seismic PSA or a plant and site-specific seismic PSA. TECDOC-1937, when used in combination with other IAEA documents in this specialized area of nuclear safety, provides a comprehensive approach that can be used to support these advanced plant seismic PSAs. These documents fill a gap in the industry methodology.” ,,,,,,,,, https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/news/new-iaea-publications-highlight-importance-of-seismic-safety-for-nuclear-power-plants

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Busting the spin that promotes ‘Small Nuclear Reactors’

Saint John MP Long is wrong on small modular nuclear reactors,  https://nbmediacoop.org/2021/04/03/mp-long-is-wrong-on-smrs/ by Christopher Reibling, April 3, 2021 This is in response to MP Wayne Long’s letter in the Telegraph Journal (March 20 – “Coon Got It Wrong on SMRs”), which is riddled with dangerous and alarming inaccuracies.

Long’s misuse of the word “recycling” is particularly troubling. When it comes to nuclear fuel, plutonium obtained from existing used reactor fuel (i.e. from the Point Lepreau reactor or from the US) can be incorporated, after burning, into new fuel elements used to power a small modular nuclear reactor (SMR). This much is true.

In doing so, however, the structural materials used to build an SMR, the steel and concrete, become so radioactively contaminated that they can never be “recycled.” This is because some of these materials have a half life of many hundreds of thousands of years.

Worse yet, and as New Brunswickers learned from the March 18 announcement from Mr. Long and Premier Blaine Higgs that SMRs would be coming to the province soon, these materials cannot be safely reprocessed or disposed of, like plastic bottles or paper, in storage facilities presently available in New Brunswick. If either of these politicians had attended the presentations given in New Brunswick last March by mathematician and nuclear consultant Gordon Edwards, they would have been aware of these contingencies.

Edwards’s takedown of the nuclear industry also details the “litany of economic failures” which have dogged it worldwide since 2000. Citing the multi-million dollar collapse of the giant Areva Corporation in France and the U.S. government’s $8.3 billion dollar bailout of Westinghouse Electric in 2010, Edwards itemizes the misfortunes of an industry which has barely been able to keep itself alive over the past three decades. Major US banks now refuse to invest in nuclear energy, leaving government’s to pick up the slack and placing taxpayers on the hook for all failures and vagaries. Sound familiar?

As leader of New Brunswick’s Green Party, David Coon has obviously familiarized himself with current research on the subject of SMRs which is why, presumably, he maintains that, introducing SMRs to New Brunswick, is tantamount to “opening up a Pandora’s box of radioactive waste.”

Long, however, views Coon’s due diligence as a sign that he does not inhabit the “real world,” ironically claiming that the industry about to be foisted by his government on a gullible New Brunswick is somehow a “green initiative.”Challenging Long’s claim that the science pertaining to the safety and economic feasibility of SMRs is “clear,” I would suggest that the question both he and Blaine Higgs should be asking themselves is this: who in their right mind, Green or otherwise, would want to move to Saint John once it’s been turned into a testing ground for small nuclear reactors. Would you? 

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Boom in ”decommissioning” nuclear reactors brings worries about financial costs, and safety

Environmental & Energy Study Institute 30th March 2021, The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) held an online briefing on nuclear energy issues, including the current economics of the U.S. nuclear power industry, how to approach decommissioning as more civilian reactors shut down, and what to do with their high-level radioactive waste.


In particular, the briefing assessed the impacts of extending the licenses of existing nuclear plants and pursuing “advanced reactors” as a way to fight climate change.

As U.S. nuclear plants age out or become unprofitable, the growing number of shuttered reactors has spawned a new
decommissioning business model that promises to remediate sites quickly, but also raises new questions about safety, financial assurance, cleanup standards, and waste disposition. Decommissioning companies want to ship highly radioactive spent fuel through 75 percent of Congressional districts to their proposed consolidated interim storage facilities (CISFs) in New Mexico and Texas, which overburdened residents there oppose.

https://www.eesi.org/briefings/view/033021nuclear

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An example of the international aspect of nuclear developments – Ireland’s complaint to Britain on the Sizewell nuclear risks

Times 4th April 2021, An Irish agency has complained to British authorities that they have not sufficiently assessed the potential implications for Ireland of a severe accident at a planned nuclear facility on the east coast of England, more
than 500km away. 


In a submission to the UK’s Planning Inspectorate last October, the Environmental Protection Agency claimed the “major accidents and disasters assessment” for the Sizewell C project had “a number of limitations, including the fact that no modelling or detailed calculations were undertaken”.

It disputed the inspectorate’s conclusion that the plant, which is due for completion in 2031, was unlikely to have a
significant effect on the environment in any other European country. “The EPA believes that this environmental impact assessment does not sufficiently address the transboundary implications of a severe accident,” it said. “A severe accident at Sizewell C, combined with unfavourable weather which resulted in radioactive contamination in Ireland, could lead to food controls and agricultural protective actions being introduced.”


 It cited a study by the Economic and Social Research nstitute that claimed a nuclear accident anywhere in northwest Europe would cost Ireland about €4 billion, even if there was no contamination here, because of the damage to tourism and export markets. It acknowledged that the normal operation of the plant, which will be located more than
520km from Ireland’s east coast, would have no measurable radiological impact in this country or on the Irish marine environment. 


The joint Oireachtas committee on housing, local government and heritage has also filed an objection to the project, claiming it has concerns about nuclear regulation in Britain after it leaves Euratom, the European nuclear energy treaty, as part of Brexit. “The committee has concerns that once Britain has left Euratom, [its] government will no longer be subject to legal proceedings at the European Court of Justice [ECJ] in the event of failures to comply with nuclear safety regulations,” the committee said.


 “Taking into account the absence of access to the ECJ post-Brexit, the ambiguity of the long-term funding of a new nuclear regulator, and the potential impacts to the Irish public and the Irish economy in the event of an incident, [we]
would like to register an objection to the proposed development.”

Britain consulted Ireland on the Sizewell C project under the Espoo Convention, which requires international consultation on activities that may have an adverse transboundary environmental effect. Tony Lowes of Friends of the
Irish Environment, which campaigned for Ireland to be consulted on Britain’s nuclear plans under Espoo, said: “The question of liability after Brexit has not been answered.”

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/epa-atomic-plans-eastern-uk-sizewell-c-znxz5w7sw

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