EU energy commissioner ‘backs Lithuania’s position on Belarus nuclear plant’

Astravyets nuclear reactor
Astravo AE archyvo nuotr.

The commissioner told Lithuanian Environment Minister Kęstutis Trečiokas during their meeting in Amsterdam on Thursday that the European Commission would make efforts to ensure that the Astravyets plant’s potential environmental impact assessment is properly conducted, that a stress test is carried out and that sufficient safety measures are put in place, it said.

The Implementation Committee of the Espoo Convention said in 2013 that the Astravyets project did not meet the convention’s requirements and proposed last March to bring in international experts to help resolve the dispute.

However, Minsk has rejected the proposal to set up such an international expert commission and has dismissed Lithuania’s criticism, saying that it will ensure that the facility meets the highest safety standards.

Belarus’ authorities say that the first reactor at the nuclear power plant, which is being built by Russia’s energy corporation Rosatom, may come online in 2018.

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