[Sinn Fein]

29ú Samhain 2001

EU support for nuclear power industry is a cause of great concern

Sinn Fein representative to the Forum on Europe Aengus Ó Snodaigh today called for a radical change in the EU approach to the Environment.  Mr. O Snodaigh said:

``The European Union must be central in protecting the Environment.  One major concern that I share with many people is the support that the EU gives to the nuclear power industry.

``Indeed, while Fianna Fáil have recently been vocal in their opposition to the MOX plant at Sellafield it is important to remember that a 2.8 billion, zero cost loan, was given to the BNFL to build the THORP facility  - this was signed off by a Fianna Fáil Finance Minister during Ireland's 1990 Presidency of the EU.  The fact that this loan was given by the EU is in itself cause for concern.   That it was Fianna Fáil who approved it is a serious inditement of the party's current soundbites.

``The EU should be promoting enhanced environmental policies.  At the moment the EU funds roads, motorways and dual carriageways while individual governments are prohibited from providing state funding to public transport which is obviously more environmental.

``The vast majority of people in Ireland, and I believe throughout Europe, want to see a Nuclear free, environmentaly friendly EU.  Thus far while some good work has been done, much remains to be achieved.''

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