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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Kirkilas expressed his opinion about Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant in Prague

In Prague, where was the second European Nuclear Energy Forum, Lithuanian Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas participated in the meeting with President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso and the prime ministers of Slovenia, the Baltic States and the Visegrad Group Countries.

The meeting focused on the importance of nuclear energy for the European Union, as ELTA was informed by the Lithuanian government. According to Kirkilas, from the economic viewpoint, nuclear energy is among the most attractive alternatives to other energy resources, and at the same time it is an important tool in combating global warming.

Kirkilas told about the progress in preparing the project on a new nuclear power plant in Lithuania. He described Lithuania’s situation with regard to energy supply and threats to country’s energy and national security after 2009. Lithuania, said Kirkilas, was like an island within the EU in terms of energy supply, and the construction of power bridges with Poland and Sweden would take another few years. In addition to that, import of electricity would be hardly possible, and Lithuanian energy sector would largely depend on a single external supplier.

The prime ministers shared the opinion that energy security is a question of solidarity and common responsibility of the EU. Kirkilas emphasized that Lithuania would stick to its international obligations, however, considering that implementation of measures compensating for the closure of Ignalina NPP could not realistically be expected before 2012, and that there was increasing public demand to extend its operation, a decommissioning regime alternative to the "immediate shutdown" was worth serious consideration.

(Source: The Baltic Course)


Anonymous said...

The prime minister of Lithuania needs to grow some balls and tell them sorry we're not going to shut the plant down, until you have a replacement plant built for us for free and operational.


Alexandra Prokopenko said...

Lithuania entered the EU on condition that Ignalina will be shut down as soon as possible. Prime minister just knows very well that it's not him who deside on such issues anymore. Lithuania lost a big piece of its independence when it entered EU, and now they have to comply with EU energy policies. And EU does not want to have a reactor which is supplied by Russian fuel and serviced by a Russian company. They'd rather have their own suppliers like French Areva or what. This whole issue is about business, money and politics.
But I agree that closing Ignalina is a stupis step for such a small and vulnerable country.

Anonymous said...

I guess he'd have to define as soon as possible, my definition would be as soon as a replacement is operational:).

What I don't understand is why these countries willingly joined the European Union. They finally got free of the Soviet Union, then no sooner they join a new bloc!

I can see joining the European free trade organization though.


Alexandra Prokopenko said...

They did actually join in order to "return into Europe that they initially belong to, that might protect them from Russian invasion". Especially this formulation is true for Latvia which has quite a racist policy regarding Russians living there (although more then 60% of the country is Russian-speaking). In fact, they went out of one "invasion" directly into another. They are in fact too small and non-self-sufficient to manage themselves between the 2 blocks. We'll see what comes out of that.