5.6. 2:00 | Updated 15:13
Saturday April 26, 1986 was a sunny, slightly cool spring day. A small youth parade marched in the center of Helsinki, carrying homemade signs. They opposed the fifth nuclear power plant.
The mood of the protesters was not high. As far back as the early 1980s, the opposition movement had flourished and drawn thousands of people to marches. The movement had faltered just when it should have struggled fiercely.
An application for a permit for a new nuclear power plant was coming to Parliament. The supporters had trumps in their hands. There was money, power, and Eastern relations that took precedence over everything else. The power plant was to be commissioned from the Soviet Union and was to be completed in 1993.
Opponents did not know that at the same time, something was happening elsewhere that would ruin the supporters ’plans.
Two explosions at the Chernobyl power plant near Kiev occurred at night, with traces of a reporter Anu Nousiainen described in the May issue of the Monthly Supplement as follows: “On Saturday morning, April 26, there was a hole in the blackened roof. The thick roof of the concrete cube that protected the nuclear reactor was bent transversely. ”
When information about the accident rushed to Helsinki, the jacket of the proponents of nuclear power turned. Prime minister Kalevi Sorsan (sd) The red soil government, large and small parties, labor market organizations and even industrial mining councils suddenly took the same position as a small group of protesters a few days earlier: no fifth nuclear power plant in Finland.
At their heads of emergency, the center and the demars wrap a large energy package. The use of peat and coal was increased. Four old nuclear power plants were allowed to continue and increase covert production.
Chernobyl the shadow was long. Prime minister Paavo Lipponen (sd) At the beginning of 2002, the purple government proposed a license for a fifth nuclear power plant, but one-third of the governing parties said they would vote against. Also Esko Ahon the central opposition led by him was scattered, so there was no definite information about the position of parliament.
The vote was preceded by bullshit and bitter lobbying on both sides. Representatives were pressured, manipulated, intimidated, and perhaps bribed. However, no one was caught.
The historic day was May 24, 2002. There was excitement in the courtroom. For once, Parliament was fully present. Speaker Riitta Uosukainen (Kok) chaired the speech, and 199 representatives pressed the button.
The whiteboard showed the numbers: 107 for and 92 against nuclear power. The solution was a group in the center, which was supposed to be opposed, but the balance of power was almost equal: 25 opposed and 22 supported nuclear power, surprisingly also Esko Aho.
At its bitterest, the defeat tasted green. Party ministers Satu Hassi and Osmo Soininvaara resigned in protest from Lipponen’s government.
The licensed Teollisuuden Voima Oy estimates that the power plant would be completed in 2009 and cost three billion euros. Olkiluoto in Eurajoki, which already had two power plants, was chosen as the location.
The misfortune continued. The power plant’s schedule failed by thirteen years and costs rose to at least eight billion euros. Teollisuuden Voima and the power plant supplier Areva from France have been arguing for years in court. According to some calculations, Olkiluoto 3 would even be the most expensive building ever in the world.
Now the Fifth Nuclear Power Plant is ready. It will no longer be downloaded and tested.
The power plant will start in 2022 and increase the share of nuclear power to forty percent of electricity generation. Thus, the use of peat and coal can be reduced.
In 1984, the Financial Times declared on its front page: Finland is a nuclear power wonderland. That must finally be true.
Anu Nousiainen’s writing on the Chernobyl nuclear accident