Old nuclear power plants could cost Netherlands €400 million in coming years

One of the nuclear Petten
One of the nuclear reactors in PettenOne of the nuclear reactors in Petten

If the government doesn't intervene, the costs for old nuclear power plants in the Netherlands can run up to 400 million euros in the coming years, according to a report by a committee made up of officials from various ministries who looked into the nuclear industry. The officials gave this warning during the formation process of the Rutte III government, NOS reports.

According to the committee, called the Hoogambtelijke Werkgroep Nucleair Landschap, demolition of the Dodewaard nuclear power plant, which closed in 1997, will cost around 200 million euros in the coming years. Removing nuclear waste from the nuclear reactor in Petten will cost around 100 million euros. And another 60 million to 100 million euros will be needed for a new reactor in Petten.

Former formation mediator Edith Schippers asked the committee to look into the nuclear industry while the government formation was still ongoing. The committee consisted of officials from the Ministries of Economic Affairs, Infrastructure and Environment, Finance, and Public Health.

The Rutte II government sent the committee's final report to the Tweede Kamer in July. That report did not include these amounts, because  it concerns confidential business information, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Finance said, according to the broadcaster.

The Ministers of the four involved Ministries wrote to the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, in July that these amounts can be prevented or limited by measures. For example, by stricter enforcement of the polluter pays principle, according to NOS. 

The amounts are included in the formation documents, and were released when the formation documents were published in November. The Finance spokesperson also said that the amounts involved are estimates and indications, and that they involve worst case scenarios.