Environmental impact study on Temelin underway, but environmentalists remain unconvinced
The controversial Temelin nuclear power plant in South Bohemia is still making the headlines, five months after it began test operations. Earlier this week, the government unveiled plans for an environmental impact study of the plant, and an international inspection team has arrived at Temelin to examine operations at the plant's first reactor. But environmental groups in both the Czech Republic and Austria remain unconvinced that the study will expose real problems. Nick Carey has this report.
In recent months, the issue of Temelin has severely strained relations Czech Republic and neighbouring Austria, a firmly nuclear-free country. Following blockades of border crossings by Austrian environmentalists last autumn, the Czech government agreed to undertake an environmental impact study at Temelin - under the guidance of the European Commission - before the plant commences commercial operations. As part of an overall assessment of the plant, an inspection team from the International Atomic Energy Agency has arrived at Temelin to review operations. Jose Manual Diaz is in charge of the mission:
But environmental activists are not convinced the study is legitimate. Jan Beranek is the Executive Director of the environmental organisation Friends of the Earth: Some environmental groups say that if the study fails to meet their requirements, they will simply refuse to participate in the process. Jan Beranek again: