Energy secretary Chris Huhne set out further details on the UK Chief Nuclear Inspector’s report into the implications of events at Japanese nuclear reactors on existing and new plants in the UK
Huhne has asked Chief Nuclear Inspector Mike Weightman for an interim report by mid May 2011 and a final report within six months. Both reports will be made public.
“The tragic events in Japan are still unfolding,” said Huhne. “We should not rush to judgement. It is important that we have the full facts at our disposal. I have asked the Chief Nuclear Inspector for a full report so that the implications for the UK are clear.”
“Safety is and will continue to be the number one priority for existing nuclear sites and for any new power stations. I want to ensure that any lessons learned from Mike Weightman’s report are applied to the UK’s new build programme.”
“This is a difficult time for Japan and we are ready to provide support as necessary,” said Weightman.
“We must establish the facts on these unprecedented events and determine if there are lessons to be learned for the UK, to add to our very robust safety standards and arrangements.”
UK Nuclear Industry Association chief executive Keith Parker welcomed the report and hopes “lessons are learned internationally from the events in Japan”.
“Nuclear power stations are some of the most robust buildings ever built – and training and safety culture in the nuclear industry is excellent,” added Parker.