Nuclear Stress Tests: the priority is for the citizens to feel safe

Today, the Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE) of the European Parliament voted on a very important Resolution regarding the risk and safety assessments (stress tests) of nuclear power plants in the European Union. This initiative was launched by the European Commission in the wake of the Fukushima Daiichi disaster.

 «The ITRE Committee did its part quite quickly. This Resolution must serve as a basis for the ongoing preparation of the Nuclear Safety Directive, and I believe it is a very good basis», declared Amalia Sartori, in her capacity as Chairwoman of the ITRE Committee and also Rapporteur of the Resolution.

 The stress test Resolution passed today should not be seen as a test to determine who is in favour and who is against nuclear power, but rather as the beginning of a process which will guarantee the safety of European nuclear power plants for Europe’s citizens.

 «Nuclear energy is an important reality in the present EU mix and our firm support for this stress test exercise shows how crucial the EP considers the combination between safety and energy security. I am sure that all Member States will take concrete actions to promote the findings of the tests and will promptly adapt to the highest applicable level of standards. We must consider the effects of our political choices on our citizens. Therefore we must facilitate the application of measures that have the objective of increasing their safety. We are committed to this aim and today’s vote confirms our engagement», said Amalia Sartori.

 The Resolution has also initiated a long and fruitful debate in ITRE regarding the role of national regulators in relation to nuclear safety.

 «Nuclear safety is in everybody’s interest. Europe can provide for real added value to nuclear safety and to better preparedness by regular exercises like stress testing and the promotion of stronger cooperation amongst national regulators. The upcoming Nuclear Safety Directive will constitute a strong impulse in this direction», concluded Pilar del Castillo MEP, EPP Group Coordinator in the ITRE Committee.

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