Nuclear power station safety: German nuclear watchdog examines case of Tihange

Thursday, 19 January 2017 13:13
The German nuclear watchdog, the BMUB will carry out a risk assessment upon the effects of a potential nuclear accident at Tihange 2. The German nuclear watchdog, the BMUB will carry out a risk assessment upon the effects of a potential nuclear accident at Tihange 2. © Belga
The concern of the German border communes located close to the nuclear reactor Tihange 2, the tank for which is showing signs of micro-cracking, has now gone as far as Berlin.
Indeed the German nuclear watchdog will now carry out its own analysis of the risks associated with a nuclear accident in the nuclear power station. This was indicated yesterday (Wednesday) by the Belgian federal agency for nuclear control (the AFCN).

The German communes at issue, located in the Aix-la-Chapelle region (known as Aachen in Germany), have frequently argued that the Tihange 2 reactor should be closed.

The German nuclear watchdog, the BMUB, the German equivalent of the AFCN, will consequently undertake a risk analysis. This will assess the potential consequences for Germany of a nuclear accident in Belgium.

The city of Aix-la-Chapelle has already carried out a study at the University of Vienna, but like the AFCN, the BMUB considered that it lacked weight.

The German nuclear watchdog is proposing to make new base calculations, this time based upon a more realistic scenario. This suggestion was agreed during a meeting with its Belgian equivalent, as part of a recent collaboration agreement concluded between Belgium and Germany to better exchange information on nuclear safety.

No official request in this regard has, however, been submitted as yet to the AFCN, which is sticking by the conclusions of its study upon the micro-fractured power stations. It insists, “Doel and Tihange are safe. Germany cannot force us to close them.”

Lars Andersen
The Brussels Times
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