In memory of the victims of the Fukushima catastrophe

Anti-nuclear activists were handing out candles to passers-by in front of Pyhäjoki town hall and library on Friday 11th from 11.00 to 14.00.

The accident in Japan five years ago showed that nuclear power is not a reliable solution even in the so-called western democratic states. The probability of accidents exists in every phase of a long and complex chain of production, from uranium mining to handling nuclear waste. The amount of radiation at the accident power plant in Fukushima is still lethal and it can not be cleaned until the year 2021.

A good example in Europe on acknowledging the risks of nuclear power is Austria where there is not a single nuclear power plant. In 1972 there was a plan to build a power plant in Zwentendorf. In the national vote in 1978 50,5 % of the voters resisted the start to use nuclear power. The plant was never opened, and not long after a new law was created in Austria to make nuclear power illegal. The ghost power plant of Zwentendorf was changed into a solar energy plant in 2009. One factor in banning nuclear power was the risk for accidents. Even if, after a variety of calculations, they didn’t consider the risk that vast, they acknowledged the state couldn’t afford taking one economically-wise. The final costs of moving and resettling people, contaminated soil and other factors would have been too big.

There’s no use telling that nuclear safety would be flawless even in Finland. It can be noticed that Fennovoima-Rosatom power plant construction site is very close to the sea level and also at that kind of geological area where the ground is rising. Thus the measurable difference between the ground and the sea level is really small which is making the area extremely sensitive for the rising sea level caused by climate change. The radical change in the climate will also bring more intense storms than the regular previous ones and it has to be taken under consideration when calculating the changes. For example, at the nuclear power plant in a Finnish city Loviisa there was an “almost” situation in 2005 because of a surprisingly strong winter storm when the sea level rose 171 centimeters. Declaring the state of emergency requires 184 centimeters.

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Even if an accident caused by a tsunami in Finland is highly improbable, it doesn’t mean we should stay silent and forget the other risks of nuclear power which are threatening humans and the whole ecosystem. Fukushima remains to be a haunting example of the carelessness in planning nuclear power plants. Regarding this it feels irresponsible that Fennovoima-Rosatom is painting beautiful pictures about clean and safe, so-called “Finnish” energy. Just a quick glance to Rosatom’s actions in, for example, Majak tells alone to what kind of safety culture is the only equipment supplier in Pyhäjoki used to.

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