Temelin trial launch just hours away

After months of heated controversy over the Temelin nuclear power plant in southern Bohemia, it now appears that the launch of trial operation may be just hours away. That hasn't deterred anti-nuclear activists though, who say they're determined to fight on. Daniela Lazarova has the story:

Although Austrian anti-nuclear activists are making a last ditch attempt to postpone Temelin's launch, the Czech Nuclear Energy Agency seems likely to give the green light to launching the first reactor within hours. "We are expecting it," a Temelin insider told reporters when asked to confirm the news that the trial operation would be launched this weekend.

Although the general public views this as d-day for Temelin, experts point out that this is merely a test run which is expected to last several months. The plant is unlikely to go into commercial operation until next spring. So are anti-nuclear protestors determined to fight on? A question earlier for Jan Haverkamp of the Czech branch of Greenpeace:

Trade and Industry Minister Miroslav Gregr
The Czech government has resisted international pressure for the launch to be postponed on the grounds that it fully adheres to strict international safety norms. Yet behind the scenes there is still friction. While the Environment Ministry has not broken Cabinet ranks, it is demanding that an assessment on Temelin's impact on the environment be concluded before the plant is allowed to go into commercial operation. This caused Trade and Industry Minister Miroslav Gregr to complain to the Prime Minister that his colleague at the Environment Minister was intentionally holding up Temelin's launch. Rita Gabrielova is the spokeswoman at the Environment Ministry: