Finnish Parliamentary Committee Approves Russian Nuclear Plant

YLE reports that the Finnish parliament has given the green light for the construction of a Russian designed nuclear plant in Pyhäjoki in northern Ostrobothnia.

The Finnish nuclear consortium, Fennovoima, has contracted Kremlin owned nuclear firm, Rosatom, to build the plant, which will also own a 34% stake in the plant.

The committee voted 14-2 in favour of building the Russian plant. The Greens’ Johanna Karimäki and the Centre Party’s Antti Kaikkonen.

A press release issued by the committee states that “if the Finnish goal to increase electrical self-sufficiency is to be achieved, then there needs to be an increase in electricity generated by nuclear power.”

The proposed plant has been hotly debated in Finland.  In October Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb delivered an impassioned speech to members of Finnish parliament, calling opposition to the nuclear plant “Russophobia.”

“The thing that has annoyed me most in this discussion is a certain attitude, even Russophobia, that has been evident in several speeches,” Stubb was quoted as saying by YLE during a debate on the project.

The safety and budget of the Russian plant has been questioned by Norwegian nuclear physicist Nils Bøhmer, who in a previous report said that “it must be acknowledged that the plant causes real safety concerns and inevitable cost overruns that will eventually fall into the laps of Finnish taxpayers.”

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