The BBC reports Finland’s parliament approved the construction of two new nuclear power stations by a vote of 120-72, which indicates the ruling coalition holds a majority on the issue in the 200 member chamber. The bill was opposed by Green League and the Left Alliance. The vote was briefly delayed due to a crowd of several hundred anti-nuclear demonstrators who entered the building.
The two new units will support the country’s objective of achieving energy independence from natural gas supplies from Russia. The government said it expects license applications for the reactors by 2014. The two new units could start-up by 2020. The two new reactors, if built, would bring the total fleet to seven units. Finland has four nuclear units in commercial operation that produce about 30% of its electricity
Is fracking shale really a problem? In many cases, I think that concerns about energy technologies are overblown. There is no free lunch, no form of energy without its drawbacks. Furthermore, people have stimulated ordinary (sandstone-based) gas wells with injection for a long time.