2011-03-20

Insuring A Nuclear Power Station

I'm on the Claverton Energy Group mailing list. Here's a (slightly amended) post from me on the safety of nuclear power:

It seems to me that the problem is the cap on the liability of nuclear power companies if there's an accident. That is, if an accident occurs and its clean-up cost exceeds the cap (£140m in UK) then the government has to pay the rest.

If this cap were to be removed, then the financial incentive to reduce insurance costs would drive safety improvements.

Furthermore, the position of the government is that nuclear power shouldn't be subsidized. But is not the cap on liability a subsidy?

I'm pleased that the government is talking about raising that cap to €1.2bn. It's not enough, but it's a start.

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