Dangerous Deceptions:

The techniques of the Western nuclear lobby and East European governments to promote nuclear energy.

By Honza Beranek and Paxus Calta - Hnuti DUHA (Friends of the Earth -Czech Republic)

[This final darft paper is part of the Non-Profit Organization Reader which is being assembled by the Öko-Institut Berlin for the Chernobyl 10th Anniversary Conference in Kiev.

Background and Introduction

With the completion of Watts Bar I in the US and the cancellation of plans for Sizewell C and Hinkley C in the UK, nuclear power has entered its final chapter in the "developed" world [1]. Of the 14 Western Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries which started commercial nuclear power programs, all but France have completed or halted all nuclear construction and have no serious plans for additional reactors [2].

These countries, most of which have fairly well-informed electorates, reasonably functioning democracies and relative freedom of the press, have rejected nuclear power for economic, health and safety reasons [3]. Nuclear power can not compete with demand-side management solutions, other conventional power sources and the constantly improving economics of renewables, even without considering the environmental costs of providing energy services.

Unfortunately, in Eastern Europe* the situation is much different. The incomplete revolutions of 1989 and 1991 have left centralized and often corrupt energy monopolies in place. No Eastern country with a nuclear program has abandoned pre-Revolutionary plans for nuclear expansion. Of the 10 Eastern countries with nuclear power programs, all except for Slovenija are either continuing construction of nuclear facilities, seriously planning for the construction of additional reactors, or both [4].

There has been a significant change in the nuclear landscape, however, since the pre- Revolutionary period in Eastern Europe. Now in all of these countries (except Armenia), Western nuclear contractors and Western government or development-bank aid is involved in the expansion or maintenance of their nuclear programs [5]. Prior to 1989, only Romania and Slovenija had significant Western nuclear partners and the other 8 nuclear states of the region had primarily Soviet and/or indigenous programs.

The death of the OECD market leaves Western nuclear vendors only two regions with significant possibilities for sales: Eastern Europe and the Asian Pacific Rim countries. Eastern Europe has the comparative advantage of having numerous unfinished reactors, lower language barriers, entrenched and often corrupt nuclear bureaucracies, and West European neighbors who are seriously concerned with the safety of operating plants and thus already willing to grant funds to Western contractors to perform safety upgrades in the region. Thus, the door to this market has already been opened.

* For the purposes of this paper, the terms "Eastern Europe" and "Eastern country" are shorthand for the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) plus the European members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) plus Armenia, which though not technically European is in the same type of nuclear situation as these other CEE/CIS countries (including receiving non-nuclear funding from the EBRD). Thus the nuclear states in this region are Lithuania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenija, the Ukraine, Russia and Armenia.

This paper will highlight some of the most common deceptive practices of nuclear advocates. We will review these methods in the context of recent anti-nuclear campaigns in the region, especially Temelín (Czech Republic), Mochovce (Slovakia) and Chernobyl. Of particular interest is the actions of the Western nuclear lobby** and nuclear-exporting governments (US, France, Germany, etc.). The paper concludes with what concrete actions can be taken in the East and West to halt the continued development of nuclear power in Eastern Europe. The major sections are: 1) Cost Overruns and Delays at Temelin, 2) Least Cost Studies (Temelin, Mochovce and Chernobyl), 3) Safety Paradoxes, 4) Democracy Issues, 5) Author biographies, Appendix A: Westinghouse PWR delays and overruns in the US, Appendix B: World Bank Arguments Against Nuclear Lending

1) Cost Overruns and delays at Temelin

The Czech Republic mirrored the behavior of many Western countries in its strong promotion of nuclear power since the end of 1960s. Despite the significantly different political and economic situation in Communist Czechoslovakia, former governments were the same kinds of unfounded optimists as their Western colleagues, when predicting the future for nuclear energy. Specifically, in 1978 the Czechoslovak government enacted legislation to build new nuclear facilities totalling 10,000 MW in capacity, with a target completion date of 1990 [6]. This target was widely missed, with only 3,300 MW gross capacity installed by that date (the same total amount in operation today in the divided Czech and Slovak Republics). Even with this slower development program safety could not be insured, with a partial core meltdown occurring at the Jaslovske Bohunice reactor A1 in 1977. The same reactor had a year earlier exposed numerous workers to excessive doses of radiation and killed two people in an explosion. The Dukovany plant has been plagued with regular fires and emergency shutdowns.

With this background, it is not surprising that the Temelín nuclear power plant has suffered from numerous delays and cost overruns. The original project contract was for four VVER-1000 design reactors (similar to the Western pressurised water type of 1000 MW gross installed capacity) to be completed by 1991 [7] at a total cost of 35 billion CZK [8] or about US$1.4 billion at current rates.

Because the Communist governments were generally not trusted, almost no-one was surprised that, after the political changes in 1989, the level of construction at Temelin was significantly lower than what had been officially claimed. This low percentage of completion was also one of the reasons why regional government decided in 1990 to withdraw the construction license for 3rd and 4th reactors.

** The western nuclear lobby is defined for the purposes of this paper as the nuclear construction companies and the pro-nuclear bi-lateral and multi-lateral banks (EBRD and several of the ExIm Banks).

However, the construction on the first two blocks continued. In the debates about completion, its constructor CEZ, the Czech national electricity monopoly, claimed Temelin was the cheapest electricity source and the fastest way to help North Bohemia, which suffered then as now from air pollution from outdated brown coal thermal power plants. During 1990-1992, CEZ assured politicians and public that Temelin would be finished by the end of 1994. The cost of the project was not disclosed officially during this period, because of "the necessary reorganization of the project", it was claimed. When the question of the future of Temelin was put on the government's agenda in autumn 1992, CEZ finally stated the project cost as 68 billion CZK, with almost half this amount already spent.

After several months and a change of governments, the Czech government (but not the parliament) unanimously decided to finish Temelin. In its final decision from March 1993, the government gave Temelin the "go-ahead" under the condition that it would cost 68,8 billion CZK and that the first reactor would start its operation by end of 1995 [9]. All responsible ministers expressed their full confidence in CEZ's ability to meet these demands.

Every doubt raised about the project since then has been shouted down with a smile by Prime Minister Klaus, Minister of Industry Vladimir Dlouhy and Minister of Finance Karel Dyba. It was this trio who performed in the unforgettable TV "debate", on the evening before the governmental decision. During this prime time discussion, without any opposing view expressed, they explained that the Temelin NPP will provide cheap electricity, will generate income through electricity exports, and would replace all coal plants in North Bohemia and will cover increase in electricity demand by 2010. The cumulative promises for this 2000 MW facility made by these politicians on this night exceeded 4500 MW [10].

Since this "performance", the main politician involved in promoting the Temelin project has been Minister of Industry Dlouhy. He has consistently maintained the government's record of deception.

But the government is not the only one lying about the progress of the Temelin project. The mostly state-owned CEZ power utility is principally responsible for the construction of the nuclear facility, and thus for estimating the plant's level of completion.

In other words, after almost 3 years and over 20 billion crowns (US$800 million), the only significant change in the plant is the exterior construction of block 2, arguably the least important part of the project. What these numbers really indicate is that CEZ intentionally misinformed the US government as to the level of completion of the plant during the January 1994 negotiations with the US ExIm Bank, in order to win the loan guarantees.

It is worth noting that, in a June 1992 study of the German safety agency GRS, the level of completion of the two Temelin blocks was estimated at 50% and 10%. This report was never officially commented on by CEZ, which simply released their own much greater figures a few months later. [16]

For those in the East who are fighting Western nuclear power companies, the claims of cost overrun and delays in the West are often not helpful because they are simply not believed by the Eastern press. Because of this we have provided the recently updated complete overrun and delay data on US domestic PWRs produced by Westinghouse (See Appendix A). The Westinghouse (and basically all nuclear vendors) data for non-US construction is similar. For example, the Bataan plant in the Philippines ran from an originally agreed US$500 million for two reactors to a total of US$2.2 billion for a single unfinished reactor, which is being converted into a diesel fired power plant. This reactor was stopped when the US government refused to provide funds to Westinghouse's third set of requests to the ExIm bank. The debt associated with this project has helped to cripple the Philippine economy.

2) Least Cost studies (Temelin, Mochovce and Chernobyl)

One of the most powerful tools used to justify the construction of nuclear power plants in Eastern countries is the "least cost" study. These studies are used to demonstrate that partly- completed Soviet designed reactors can be finished and upgraded to meet "safety standards acceptable to the West" at a lower cost than the alternatives. We will briefly review the different types of lies used by expert consulting firms to justify these claims.

We have provided excerpts from an important World Bank document in Appendix B, which argues against the construction of nuclear facilities generally (though not the specific case of unfinished Soviet reactors, which is a bit more complex). This document is important none-the- less, because it points out several factors which are crucial to rational energy policy, but are quite often ignored by bi-lateral and multi-lateral banks which are trying to invest in nuclear power. For those working against nuclear power, these larger policy issues should be addressed as early in campaigns as possible, ideally before "least cost" plans are initiated, because from a policy perspective they should logically be resolved first. These World Bank arguments are also generally useful in campaigning because the Bank is a respected "independent" authority. It is important to note that the World Bank has not lent funds for the construction or maintenance of nuclear facilities anywhere on the planet.

To thoroughly examine a "least cost" plan requires a trained economist. However because nuclear power is such a poor investment, it is not possible to hide all of the truth in distorted loan discount rates and exaggerated gas price forecasts. For example, one of the most common practices is to simply ignore demand side solutions (energy-saving measures).

The Tractabel least cost study used to justify the completion of the Temelin NPP [17] actually does investigate demand side solutions, in one of the appendixes [18] (which demonstrate that a significant fraction of Temelins capacity could be implemented with "realistic" energy conservation programs, and almost twice Temelins capacity was economically justifiable [19]). But it reports says "The impact of possible demand side management is not included [in this analysis]." in this "least cost plan," presumably at the request of the contractor of the study (CEZ) [20]. Additionally, the Czech Government also ignored World Bank and independent expert studies which showed efficiency far more effective than completing the unfinished reactors at Temelin. [21]

In the case of Mochovce it was the Smart Power study (a consortium of 33 utilities and government agencies including US and East European members) which indicated that 616 MW of electricity could be saved (despite low energy prices) at a cost of only US$100 million [22]. In other words, 70% of Mochovces output could be replaced at about 10% of the proposed cost of completing these reactors. In the thousands of pages of project justification for Mochovce, this major study is simply not mentioned.

Another common omission in these least cost studies is to ignore the possibility of converting the existing facility to a non-nuclear fuel. This option is often very economically attractive, because it uses some of the existing infrastructure, thus reducing costs. In the case of Temelin, the Austrians performed such a study and discovered that the costs of conversion (plus supplemental electricity imports to cover the non-nuclear solutions' reduced power output) were lower than the costs of completing the nuclear facility. [23]

For those trying to prove that completing nuclear facilities is the least expensive approach, these conversion options are especially unattractive, because they remove a second possibility for significant price distortions as well: overstating the green fielding cost of the unfinished project. In the case of the Tractebel study, an incredibly unrealistic figure of 20.1 billion CZK (about US$ 670 million) is used as the cost of demolishing the unfinished (and thus not radioactive) plant [24]. Power International (also commissioned by CEZ) reported that the demolition of two US reactors, before criticality would cost an estimated US$3 to 80 million each [25]. The Tractebel estimate is even significantly higher than the estimated cost of decommissioning highly radioactive facilities in the US [26].

When nuclear power options are being reviewed, it is very often the case that governments which have had very little interest in controlling fossil fuel plant emissions, become very green. The strategy here is to make alternatives to nuclear look very expensive by imposing stiff emissions penalties on conventional fuel plants. While there are no such penalties now in the Czech Republic, nor have any been proposed, they were used in the Tractebel analysis of Temelin, whenever fossil fuel plants were compared to nuclear. The specific costs are US$40/ton of SO2 emission and US$120/ton for Fly ash, dramatically increasing the cost of even cleaner fossil systems [27]. At the same time radioactive waste handling for the nuclear facilities was not even mentioned as a cost for the plant.

Ironically, the choice of Temelin by the Czech Government made it impossible to clean up the existing serious air pollution problems in Northern Bohemia, because of the countries strict limits on foreign indebtedness. Two significant World Bank loans for aid to the pollution stricken North Bohemia region totalling US$350 were cancelled at the time the Temelin contract was being finally negotiated, because Temelin consumed all the state guarantees available. [28] It should also be noted that the Temelin project worsen air quality by diverting funds from the dirty, but profitable North Bohemian coal fired plants to the ever expanding construction costs of the nuclear facility. Were Temelin not being built these moneys would almost certainly be re-invested in improving efficiency and air quality in the North Bohemia region. [29*]

Nuclear power projects have a history of being delayed world wide (See Appendix A). Because of this, least cost studies generally provide scenarios for delays in construction as well as changes in other financial variables. The Tractebel study considers 2 delay scenarios, 2 years late and 4 years late (start in Sept. 97 and Sept. 99). The plant costs for these delays are estimated as 73.1 billion CZK and 79.7 billion CZK respectively (the base case assumes the plant will be finished in Sept. 95 at a cost of 68.1 billion CZK) [30].. The reader should be reminded that currently admitted delay is already 3 years, but the current estimated cost is between 80 and 88 billion CZK. In other words, after slightly more than three years, the magnitude of cost overrun for Temelins is almost twice as high as the worst case forecasted by the least cost study.

In Slovakia, the EBRD hired Putnam, Hayes and Bartlett (PHB), a normally reputable organization, to perform the least cost study. But the number of manipulations needed to make Mochovce least cost would finally lead to charges of "manipulation" in the press including the following quote from the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung [31]

Employees of the consulting firm were therefore instructed to change the capital cost and the production capacity of the gas plant [in the discount rate clause inserted in the calculations] in such a way that the Mochovce project would prove barely 5% more cost efficient than the gas plant.

Other critics of the PHB study, which seem to unrealistically favor the Mochovce option included gas prices set too high. The base case of the PHB analysis would require a 60% increase in gas prices in the next 4 years. The world Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) project significantly lower prices. [32] Significantly, the EIB was to be one of the project partners in funding Mochovce, there internal analysis of the PHB study was similarly critical of the least cost plan.

Another "common" trick is to underestimate decommissioning costs. Mochovce decommissioning costs were estimated at between 560 million DM, which is 637 DM/kW. This amount is far below estimates put forward of similar design reactors at Greifswald, where the range was between 2,250 DM/kW to 3,350 DM/kW or 3.5 to 5.3 times higher than Mochovce. This lead the Oko-Institut to conclude "The decommissioning costs at the moment or in the period of the decommissioning works are grossly underestimated by the PH&B study... inferring an unacceptable and illogical discounting of decommissioning costs."[33]

Current Chernobyl situation

Just before the Christian New Year, Canada chairing the G-7 countries signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Ukrainians for the aid to the energy sector in exchange for a targeted shut down of Chernobyl. This deal is a catastrophe. US$ 890 million will go to the completion of two Soviet designed reactors by western companies and US$ 360 million for safety upgrades and decommissioning for the operating Chernobyl reactors [34]. Other aspects of the aid package make it total US$ 3.4 billion.

Initially the Ukrainians were offering about US$ 900 million of their own funds to help with the phase out, clean up and development of replacement power. But at the last moment the Ukrainians removed all financial commitment and left in only the target to close Chernobyl by the year 2000. [An earlier gas deal which the ABB lead consortium collapsed when the Ukrainians demanded the west cover the cost of gas.] The funding for these reactors is split with US$ 490 million coming from the EBRD and the other US$ 400 million will come from EurAtom.[35]

It is clear the Ukrainians hope to do what the Lithuanian and Bulgarian governments have done - use EBRD money to complete safety upgrades and then claim the reactors are now safe and thus need not be closed [36]. If this comes to pass, as many policy experts expect, the west will have made possible the completion of two dangerous hybrid east/west reactors the Ukrainians could have not otherwise afforded and provided funds and an excuse for the life extension of the two operating Chernobyl reactors.

Bill Chandler is the Senior Staff Scientist at the Batelle Laboratories which is funded by the US Department of Energy. After reviewing the EBRD "least cost" analysis for finishing reactors in the Ukraine he wrote "I told my graduate students that if they submitted such an analysis for course credit, they would receive a failing grade... I have no reservation in saying the EBRD energy demand forecast is invalid and should not be the basis for Ukrainian energy policy or international assistance projects."[37]

At present, due to political pressure, the World Bank has been asked to redo the Lahmeyer International least cost study in place of the EBRD. It should be pointed out the US Department of Energy has already studied the proposed upgrades of these reactors and found that wind power on the Crimean is more cost effective and showed 1000 MW of wind could be running within 2 to 3 years [38]. Also the Ukraine is the most energy wasting country in Europe, with 8 to 10 times the energy intensity of the EU [34]. Thus the possibilities for energy efficiency in the area are excellent.

3) Safety Paradoxes

There are two types of safety paradoxes with western government involvement in the completion of nuclear power plants in Eastern Europe. Specific safety double standards and the issue of what constitutes a "safety upgrade" and what is really life extension.

Unified Germany is the source of the main safety double standard example. VVER 440/213 models in operation and in several in varying states of construction at Griefswald were analyzed and deemed unsafe to continue operating and too expensive to upgrade to acceptable safety levels [39]. Yet it is exactly this type of reactor which German utilities (Bayernwerke and Preussen Elektra), the German ExIm Bank (Hermes) and the German Executive Director of the EBRD were all proposing be completed at Mochovce.

In an amazing admission, Eberhard Wild, Chief of Bayernwerke said of Mochovce "Certainly, no one would permit this kind of installation in the surroundings of Munich" [40]. But at the time he said this, his company had agreed that if certain EBRD conditions were met, Bayernwerke would participate in the funding of the project in exchange for the export of cheap electricity to German. Bayernwerke was also considering partial ownership in the Mochovce project. The international campaign against Mochovce ultimately targeted Bayernwerke as a key player and forced them out of the project.

According to a detailed review of the Mochovce safety report by 60 international scientists "NPP Mochovce could not be licensed in western countries such as Finland, France, Germany or the US"[41]. Yet the Finnish government was the only EBRD member to officially state it would vote in favor of the Mochovce project. It was known that France and Germany with significant financial interests in the project were advocating it and while the US never made an official decision about the project, many policy analysts felt they would side with their larger European allies and vote for the project in spite of the safety and economic problems with Mochovce.

Unified Germany also has an unfinished reactor of the same design as Temelin (VVER 1000/320) at Stendal. In a more advanced state of completion than Temelin it was estimated that it would cost between US$2.3 and 2.9 billion to upgrade it to German safety standards [42]. Thus in Germany the necessary upgrades would cost over US$1 billion more than was initially estimated by CEZ for the completion on Temelin, and even more than the current cost overruns. It should be noted that Germany cancelled the construction of Stendal after establishing that the safety enhancements would not be economically viable.

The second area of safety paradox is the issue of "life extension" vs safety upgrades. As mentioned in the previous section, both the governments of Bulgaria and the Lithuania governments have made deals with the EBRD which were to bring the early phase out of their reactors in exchange for short term safety upgrades. In both cases (and as will be likely the case at Chernobyl if the proposed aid package is approved) once the safety measures are implemented, it is a very strong argument to keep the plants operating, precisely because this money has been spent to make them safe.

In 1992 at the G-7 Summit in Munich there was a commitment by the major powers to work to close down ""as quickly as possible" the most dangerous plants in the region (this normally defined as the RBMK (Chernobyl design) and VVER 440/230 designs). Since this time no plants have been closed and in fact the G-7 has invested in nuclear facilites in the region. If these investments were only in safety upgrades, one could perhaps make the case that the phase out is still coming. In fact two thirds of the funds spent in the region by these powers is actually for the construction of new facilities, rather than safety measures [43].

The G-7 instructed the World Bank to study the possible close down of these reactors (in Armenia, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Russia, Slovakia and the Ukraine). The conclusion of this study was[44]:

It would be technically and economically feasible to meet the electricity demand of the six countries while closing these higher risk plants by the mid-1990s (Low Nuclear Scenario). The investment cost, including nuclear safety upgrades under this scenario would be about US$18 billion during 1993-2000 ($2.3 billion per annum) provided moderate economic reforms are pursued to manage demand and improve the utilization efficiency, and the primary alternative to nuclear power is gas fired thermal plant.

In spite of this conclusion, the availablitiy of western jobs in implementing renewable and clean conventional sources, the G-7 (and for that matter OECD) countries have done vitually nothing to close these plants already identified as dangerous.

4) Democracy Issues

The Temelin project ignored democratic principles from its start. The communists policy was to ignore the concerns of the people in the region and opposition was actively surpressed. Regrettably, these practices seem to remain in place today. During the period around new government decision in 1993, many attempts were made to discuss the issue publicly. Almost all of them failed, the politicians basically refused to participate in real debates. There was no effort made to counter the arguments of opposition, all significant project documentation has been kept secret and inaccessible and still no one ever asked the local people for their opinion.

In 1992, the villages and towns formed in the region formed a formal association (encouraged to do so by the CEZ utility, which assumed they would support Temelin). Not long after its formation, elected representatives from 58 of these 65 communities wrote the Czech government. This letter requested the construction of Temelin be suspended and openly discussed. They never got any official answer.

The petitions demanding Environmental Impact Assessment on Temelin were signed by over 60,000 Czechs. These were also ignored by both the government and the power plant. There was never even a parliamentary discussion on this project, which is the most expensive in the history of the Czechoslovak region.

Non-Profit Organizations (NPOs) have had no access to the current documents about plant's safety (documents on nearly irrelevant topics from the communist era have been released and were even used as part of the justification for the project to the US Congress, even thought the project has dramatically changed since then). Continuing this history of deception, the Czech delegation to the US Congress in 1994 promised that all of the documentation on safety and environmental impact were available, to anyone who wanted to see them and had even been advertized in the papers as being available. Requests which were made for the documents by NPOs immediately after these promises were made were met with endless bureaucratic run- arounds and outright lies. No documents of significance have been released, nor are they likely to be.

The legality of the construction is doubtful, as only the old soviet project is licensed. All the changes being made by Westinghouse are not authorized officially. Such a process of authorization would also include public participation, and would force CEZ to public at least some of the documents. CEZ unwilling to do this says that the modifications are not significant enough to require a new licensing procedure. Yet CEZ claims these modifications are significant enough to solve all of the numerous design and environmental problems which have been identified with the original plan.

Without access to the detailed information the NPO community has had great difficulty in studying the plant to determine its safety and impact. Almost all of the information we have comes from a fairly constant stream of leaks from the government and persons in the plant itself who are critical of the project, but can not say so publicly. Some useful information does come from CEZ press releases (like the above mentioned completion data), but mostly because the plant simply assumes no one is looking at what they are doing very carefully.

After trying for years, in December 1995, we succeeded in getting our first meeting with CEZ representatives to answer our questions (there had been some public discussions before this). Every time we requested evidence to prove some point it was refused with the claim that it was a "business secret". Among the questions we asked also about problems with quality assurance in 1993 (we knew about the from draft report of Czech Atomic Energy Agency (SUJB) annual report [45].). We were told by CEZ that the most serious event was when some workers started welding pipes at the area of primary cooling loops; and that the problem was just formal, that they did not have relevant approval to start the work. A week later we met the SUJB officials in Prague and asked them the same question. The answer we got was that there was that the situation was "a terrible mess .. workers lacked basic project documentation... if the welder does not have documentation, he does not know what and where to weld exactly... " Workers had left cigarette butts and had tracked into an area which was supposed to be a "clean room"[46*]. In fact in a related incident, SUJB fined CEZ 500,000 CZK (US$ 20,000) a significant amount by Czech standards, for failing to abide by SUJB rulings to stop working in an area which was improperly prepared [45].

It was revealed in 1995 that the Czech Secret Service (BIS) was monitoring environmental groups which were opposed to Temelin. Typically these practices include opening mail, listening to telephone conversations and intercepting faxes. Even though these groups are committed to non-violent action and have never used force against the authorities, plant personnel or the plant itself, the BIS felt it was necessary to monitor the activities of these groups, sacrificing civil rights for the protection of nuclear power. [47]


This paper is not finished, but the relatively obvious conclusion we can draw is that the nuclear lobby and especially the EBRD are attempting to use numerous deceptive methods to advance their objective of building nuclear facilites where ever possible even when they make no economic sense (without even considering environmental costs).

Those who wish to fight nuclear power must be aware of these intentionally deceptive techniques and reveal them to as wide an audience as possible.

5) Author Biographies

Jan Beranek (1970), co-founder of Hnuti DUHA and key member of the Czechoslovak anti- nuclear movement, is a sociology student at Masarek University in Brno. For four years he has led Hnuti DUHA's energy campaign. In 1992 he spent six months in the Amsterdam office of WISE (World Information Service on Energy), studying the activity of the nuclear industry in CEE. He founded the Czech WISE office and edits its newsletter, ENERGY. He is a board member of Hnuti DUHA and a part-time employee.

Accomplishments: Beranek has acted as an advisor to the Czech Parliament on energy policy, including writing a report on energy issues which was printed by the Czechoslovak government and distributed to elected representatives and others. Beranek was instrumental in implementing additional environmental safeguards in the EIA process for the proposed radwaste storage facility in the Czech Republic. He has been in televised debates with members of the CEZ power utility over nuclear power in the Czech Republic. Beranek was and is the CEE editor for Friends of the Earth's major report "Russian Roulette: Soviet- Designed Nuclear Power Plants in the CEE and CIS".

Paxus Calta (1957), co-founder of SNEEEZ (Stop Nuclear Energy in the East European Zone) and is the volunteer International Nuclear Campaigner for both Hnuti DUHA and Global 2000 (Vienna). He sits on the International Steering Committee for the Chernobyl Plus 10 Campaign and is a regular contributor to the WISE News Communiqué and Last Generation Magazine. He is the coordinator for the Fingerbook Propaganda Project, which has just completed its guide to nuclear power plants and resistance movements in Eastern Europe. He has a Bachelors of Engineering in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering and a Bachelors of Science with honors in Economics both from Cornell University in the New York. He is a political refuge from the United States, currently residing in Eastern Europe.

Accomplishments: Calta has hitchhiked on sailboats across the Pacific Ocean, smuggled Tibetan monks across the Himalayas into Nepal, promoted renewable energy projects in Hawaii, vaccinated children against measles in Nicaragua, worked on oil rigs on the North Slope of Alaska and danced atop Soviet tanks in Estonia. For non-violent direct action protests against nuclear power and US military intervention he has spent time in jail in numerous countries on three continents.

Both Jan Beranek and Paxus Calta can be reached at the Hnuti DUHA offices: Jakubske nam 7, 60200 Brno, Czech Republic, 42-5-4221-0438 phone or 42-5-4221-0347 fax. By e-mail at and The World Wide Web home page for the Chernobyl Plus 10 Campaign is To request a free copy of the Fingerbook on CEE/CIS NPPs and resistance movements write to the Fingerbook Project c/o Hnuti DUHA or e-mail:

Sources for Westinghouse PWRs in the US

The list of Westinghouse reactors comes from Westinghouse itself: "Westinghouse-Supplied Pressurized Water Reactors" 11/30/91

The data on US delivery and cost overruns comes from US Dept. of Energy/Energy Information Agency - DOE/EIA-0473(88) "Nuclear Power Plant Construction Activity 1988" Initial Cost Estimate and Target Completion Dates: U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, "The Nuclear Industry: 1974," (1974), Table 1-1, Central Station Nuclear Plants, pp. 8-12. However, Vogtle 1 & 2 target completion dates were given as "indefinite." For alternative target data, see Vogtle 2 note, below.

Actual Completion Dates (except Comanche Peak 2): U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Licensed Operating Reactors, Status Summary Report Data Through 12/31/92" ("The Gray Book"), February 1993.

Comanche Peak Actual Cost: Kathi Miller, Texas Utilities Electric Company spokesperson, cited in "Nucleonics Week," August 19, 1993, p. 14.

Seabrook Actual Cost: Seth Sulman, "Portrait of a Dinosaur," in "Nature," November 22, 1990, pp. 362-363.

Vogtle 2 Actual Cost: Komanoff Energy Associates (KEA) Nuclear Plant Capital Cost Database, for Vogtle 1 and 2 combined. Vogtle 2 Target Completion Date: Prepared Testimony of Charles Komanoff before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission: In the Matter of Georgia Power Company (Vogtle Nuclear Units 1 and 2), Docket Numbers 50-424 and 50-425, 1976, p. 3, citing Georgia Power Co. projections as of late 1975.

South Texas Actual Cost: from Direct Testimony and Exhibits of Charles Komanoff on behalf of Texas Public Utility Counsel, before the Texas Public Utility Commission, 1988, p. 6. Cost estimated by KEA on basis of actual direct cost of $5.43 billion, and estimated 50% additional cost for interest (AFUDC).

The cost and delay data for Watts Bar I comes from the WISE News Communique #444, Dec 15, 1995.

This data has been compiled by the energy project of Hnuti DUHA (RAINBOW Movement)/ Friends of the Earth-Czech Republic - feel free to reproduce this data in any form; we request that the sources be noted.

Appendix B: World Bank Arguments Against Nuclear Lending

"[Nuclear] Costs typically had come in at two to three times the original estimates, delays had been substantial and production problems had resulted in output well below capacity."

"[T]he accidents at Three Mile Island (1979) and CHernobyl (1986), and the difficulties in safe disposal of radioactive wastes, have heightened public concern for the safety of the technology and have generated strong opposition to investments in nuclear plants. Bank lending for energy, even if the connection with nuclear power is indirect, will be subject to public scrutiny."

"The lowest developed country estimates are from France where published information suggests capacity costs of between US$1,500 and US$2,000 per kW. These costs may include capital and other subsidies that are difficult to quantify. In the Untied States, costs range between US$3,000 and US$5,000 per kW. In Argentina and Brazil, costs are between US$5,000 and US$8,000 per kW. Costs for conventional technologies range from US$500-600 per kW for combined cycle gas plants to US$1,300-$1,600 for coal gasification, combined cycle plants and slightly less for fluidized bed coal technology. Coal or steam turbines have costs between US$800 and US$1300 per kW. Operating costs must be added to capital costs to obtain final electricity costs. Even with low operating costs, the high capital costs of nuclear preclude their being selected as the least cost alternative under any reasonable assumptions concerning prices of coal and oil. "

"Nuclear plants are thus uneconomic because at present and projected costs they are unlikely to be the least-cost alternative. There is also evidence that the cost figures usually cited by suppliers are substantially underestimated and often fail to take adequately into account waste disposal, decommissioning and other environmental costs. Furthermore, the large size of many nuclear plants relative to developing country systems leads to risk of substantial excess capacity should demand fail to increase as predicted. A nuclear investment strategy lacks flexibility to adapt to changing circumstances. The higher costs would require large increases in tariffs and could threaten the financial viability of the systems if nuclear power were a significant part of the total..."

"Catastrophic Failures: Both nuclear and hydro plants have only a small probability of catastrophic failure, but some experts point to experience of systems failure in nuclear plants, where the exposure is much greater than in hydro dams (where the safety issue is a structural one). The worst case catastrophe for a nuclear plant is much worse than for a hydro plant because of the long-run health impacts (as at Chernobyl). In both cases, the consequences are borne by involuntary population."

"The environmental community is therefore strongly anti-nuclear. It emphasizes that the risk is one of involuntary exposure and that the environmental costs are high enough to rule out nuclear power even if it were otherwise economic."

"Further complicating the issue is a perception of secrecy and lack of candor that characterizes the operation of nuclear power plans. In recent years, a number of accidents have raised doubts in the public mind about the competence of the industry and the safety of the process. Many doubt the credibility of the industry." From World Bank Technical Paper #154: Environmental Assessment Sourcebook Volume III Guidelines for Environmental Assessment of Energy and Industry Projects by the World Bank Environment Department, April 94, p 83-89


[1] WISE News Communiqué (NC) #444, p2 15 Dec 95. Perhaps more than any plant in the US Watts Bar I typified the problems of the industry. Over 6000 safety violations were cited by experts, the plant was blessed with numerous whistle blowers, congress interceded in an attempt to stop it and ultimately it ended up 23 years late and 1,100% over the original budget at over US$ 7 billion. This per kW installed price of US$ 5,700 is over ten times the current price for combined cycle gas power generation in the US and western Europe. Watts Bar was built by Westinghouse (See Appendix A).

[2] Nuclear News Magazine, Sept. 1994, Page 57-76. World wide reactors survey shows 100% completion for all reactors in the following OECD countries: Belgium, Canada, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, UK. The US put Watts Bar 1 into low power operation in November 1995 after having cancelled construction of the last three remaining under construction plants in the US (WISE News Communiqué #444). With the announcement of plans for privatization, the UK cancelled plans for it final 2 proposed reactors (WISE NC #445, p5, 19 Jan 96). Spain announced last year that they would not complete 5 unfinished reactors (WISE NC #436, p4 21 July 95). Italy closed its three operating reactors after a public referendum in 1987 and Austria did not start up its only reactor which was 100% complete at Zwentendorf, also because of a public referendum in 1978. Mexico has completed its second and last reactor and connected it to the grid in Dec 94 . Japan is part of the OECD and continues to build nuclear facilities at least 3 nuclear facilities, but it is not "western". The Czech Republic has recently joined the OECD (and is the first CEE/CIS country to do so), but for the purposes of this comparison they have been excluded based on the same "western" criteria. Even France has announced it will not start new additional construction until after the year 2000 if ever (Nucleonics Week, 23 June 94, p8).

[3] Mexico with institutionalised government corruption (especially voting fraud) and press censorship would have to be excluded from the group. The Czech Republic (which has been moved to the "eastern" group) also has an untested law enacted after the "Velvet Revolution" which can imprison journalists for "unfair" criticism of the government for up to two years. In a tragic ironically, this law was signed into force by President Vaclav Havel who spent 4 years in prison during the communist regime for basically the same offense.

[4] Lithuania is being actively approached by Westinghouse and others for replacement reactors for Ignalina. The Czech Republic continues construction of the Temelin reactors. Slovakia is attempting to find funding for the unfinished Mochovce reactors. Hungary has just included the possibility for additional reactors in the national energy strategy (conversation with Ada Amon Jan 14, 1996). Romania has 5 unfinished reactors at Cernavoda with fuel being brought to the almost completed first block. Bulgaria proposed the completion of 2 reactors at Belene and as this paper goes to print the Bulgarian parliament is planning to vote on completing this reactor complex. The Ukraine wishes to continue construction at Khmel'nitsky and Rovno and is seeking funding from the G-7 for these plants in exchange for phasing out the 2 operating blocks at Chernobyl. See footnote (see Footnote[34]). Russia is negotiating with the EBRD for the completion of 4 new reactors at the Sosnovy Bor site, near St. Petersburg. Armenia restarted the second block of Metsamor on Oct. 27 and is working on the first block (WISE NC #443, p5, 24 Nov. 95) The Slovene Parliament decided on Jan 11, 1996 to accelerate the closer of the countries only nuclear reactor at Krsko (Slovenec, p1, 12 Jan 96).

[5] Dangerous Liaisons, Tim Jenkins, Friends of the Earth UK, Nov. 1992, p 16-20.

[6] - Decision of Czechoslovak government Nr. 221/1978

[7] - Program of 7th five-year economical plan

[8] - Decision of Czechoslovak government Nr. 57/1981

[9] - Decision of Czech government Nr. 109/1993

[10] - Ceske Television March 93

[11] - Proposal for governmental decision Nr. 383/1994 (4th July 1994)

[12] - Date of Dlouhy presentation

[13] - newspaper clipping from that time (the govt officially accepted these shifts at May 18th 1995).

[14] Feb. 6, 1996 public debate at Stuz in Prague between Honza Beranek (Hnuti DUHA) and Mr. Fleishanz of Skoda Praha.

[15] - March 8th Press Release from Greenpeace, Hnuti DUHA and South Bohemian Mothers commemorating the first anniversary of the US ExIm agreement on loan guarantees for Temelin

[16] Nucleonics Week "GRS study will improve VVERs But not in Germany BMU says", Mark Hibbs, Sept 19, 1991

[17] CSFR Power Sector Least Cost Development Plan by Tractebel, for the PHARE/EU Energy program, Oct 92. This study has 8 parts covering both the Czech and Slovak Republics: Analysis of energy demand, production, grid considerations and DSM for both regions.

[18] Tractebel Chapter 6 Demand Side Management in the Czech Republic. This section of the report was not released to the public, even after the summary findings were finally given out, even though the report was paid for by the EU.

[19] It states that demand side management could cover 3500 MW are "technically feasible", 3000 MW were economically attractive and 1200 MW of savings were considered "realistic". The difference between these definitions is not clarified in the report.

[20] Tractebel, Vol. 1, p3

[21] World Bank Country Survey: Czechoslovakia, Transition to Market Economy, May 91, Washington DC

[22] Backing the Wrong Horse, The EBRD, The Mochovce Nuclear Power Plant and the Future Energy Policy in Central and Eastern Europe. Global 2000, April 10-11, 1995, page 14

[23] Conversion of the Temelin NPP to a gas-fired combined cycle power plant. M. Heindler, A. Koniak, H. Lechner, Vienna, February 1994

[24] Tractebel, Scenario NO TEMELIN, investment and production costs, Vol. 1 page 25

[25] Iven Benes, Statement of Power International on Comments by Directors of CEZ-ETE and Skoda Praha, May 26, 1992. (Prepared by the Request of the Spokesperson of the Czech Government - May 31, 1992)

[26] For example, in the NRC review of decommissioning by Batelle Labs. The projected costs for decommissioning the reference PWR (Trojan) at US$124.6 million (Inside NRC, Nov. 29, 1993 p7). Labor and fuel storage costs are two primary components of decommissioning. There would be no fuel storage cost if the unfinished reactor were demolished. In the US currently, labor costs are far higher than in the Czech Republic (further contributing to the unlikelyness of this decommissioning figure), however it is often assumed that by the end of the life of the plant Czech labor prices will have reached western levels. This should contribute to a "bargain" for discontinuing the facility now, while making the Trojan and other comparisons more comparable for end of design life comparisons. In the US, decommissioning cost estimates assume that productivity maybe reduced by 50% or more, because of precautions which must be taken in the presence of radiation. Obviously if Temelin is demolished before completion, this radioactive hazard will not exist to decrease productivity.

[27] Costs for air pollution from Tractebel report for convention power plants, "other date and working assumptions" Vol. 1, page 15

[28] The exhaustion of loan guarantees was stated by Czech PM Vaclav Klaus to the Bretton Woods Committee in Washington DC (Oct 15, 1993). The Czech Republic cancelled negotiations for a both a US$150 million World Bank loan for reclaiming strip mining regions in N. Bohemia and other environmental projects plus a loan of US$ 200 million for retrofitting lignite fired plants and improving electricity transmission facilities (International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (World Bank)/ International Development Association (IDA), Monthly operational Summary of Bank and IDA Proposed Projects (as of January 15, 1994) SecM94-116, 79 (Feb. 4, 1994)

[29*] NB money to Temelin

[30] Tractebel, Investment Costs considered and other input data, page 9,10

[31] Feb. 4, 1995, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, p6

[32] Backing the Wrong Horse, The EBRD, The Mochovce Nuclear Power Plant and the Future Energy Policy in Central and Eastern Europe. Global 2000, April 10-11, 1995, page 12

[33] Oko-Institut, Felix Matthes and Christof Timpe: Statement Concerning the Least Cost Study for the Public Participation Programme Related to the Project "Completion of the Mochovce NPP (Slovak Republic).", Feb. 10 1995

[34] Currently there are no public records which gives the proposed breakdown down between money going to so-called "upgrades" money and decommissioning costs. With a significant number of examples underestimating decommissioning and the high pressure of western nuclear vendors to profit from the Chernobyl catastrophe, it seems likely that the majority of these funds will go to "making the plant safe" while continuing to operate, rather than close it quickly and put the money into making the people safe from the harmful effects of radiation.

[35] Greenpeace Press Release: Greenpeace Calls G7 Memorandum on Chernobyl Closure, Clear Evidence That Lessons Have Not Been Learned. Ottawa. 20th December 1995, This release also reflects the G-7 decision in from the July 95 Summit in Korfu, Greece to contribute 400 million ECU to the completion of these reactors from EurAtom funds (which are limited to 50% of construction costs and were only extended to reactors outside of the EU in 1994).

[36] EBRD closer for aid agreement with Bulgaria WISE NC 436 p4, 21 July 95

[37] Jan 5, 1996 Memo from Bill Chandler to Miriam Bowling of NRDC. Subject EBRD Paper Ukraine Power Sector Least Cost Investment Plan and Training Programme: Main Report

[38] "US Department of Energy/Ukraine Evaluation of Energy Options to Replace the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant", June 23, 1994.

[39] Nucleonics Week "GRS study will improve VVERs But not in Germany BMU says", Mark Hibbs, Sept 19, 1991

[40] CTK (Czech Press Agency) Press release June 6, 1994

[41] Government of the Republic of Austria: Public Participation Procedure NPP Mochovce, Comments of the Austrian Government, Vienna Feb 95

[42] Sicherheitstechnicche Bewertung des Kernkraftwerkes Stendal, Block A, vom Typ WWER 1000/W-320, GRS-99, Supplementary Facts to Press Conference, March 20 1991, NPP Stendal Ltd, Management (March 27, 1991).

[43] Tim Jenkins, Friends of the Earth UK - "Dangerous Liaisons: Western involvement in the Nuclear Power Industry of Central and Eastern Europe" Dec 92, WB study on Phase out, failure to close any plants and 2 to 3 times more investing in new construction than in safety measures.

[44] Harold Wackman (project Coordinator) World Bank, Nuclear Power and Safety in Central and Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union, March 1993 Confidential

[45]. Report on Results of SUJB Activities during Execution of State Oversight of Nuclear Safety of Nuclear Facilities in 1993, Submitted by SUJB Chairperson Ing Jan Stuller

[46*] Conversation between Honza Beranek and SUBJ guys on ______ date (who)?

[47] BIS surveillance of environmental NPOs was revealed in a political scandal and following groups were revealed as being monitored: Greenpeace CR, Friends of the Earth - CR (Hnuti DUHA) and Children of the Earth. These groups demanded they be removed from the list, but were informed that any illegal action in their history, including non-violent civil disobedience made them a potential threat and they are still being monitored.