No more Chernobyls!

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

Stop EBRD funding
for K2/R4 nuclear reactors in Ukraine

Join the International Day of Protest

A SEED Europe, in close cooperation with many other organizations, has taken the initiative for an International Day of Protest against the proposed funding of two nuclear reactors by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

On Monday, December 14th, protests will be staged at various sites all over Europe, to show the widespread resistance against using taxpayers money from the EBRD to finance another Chernobyl in the making. How exactly the protest will be organized is up to the participating organizations. This day of protest is an open event, protests will of course be peaceful, but they will be loud!

This Day of Protest is crucial. The EBRD has been considering the loan for years already but was always hesitant to make a decision. Right now, a Public Participation Process is taking place, which is supposed to gather input from the public on the project proposal. This PPP ends on December 18th and the Board of Directors of the Bank will make a final decision soon afterwards, early 1999.

If they approve the loan: The EBRD will come up with a loan of 190 million US dollar, probably followed soon by much bigger loans from Euratom and Western export credit agencies. Nothing will stop the Ukrainian sponsor, Energoatom, to finish the reactors and put them into operation then.

But if they say NO: It is very likely that the whole project will be canceled, as it will be virtually impossible for the Ukrainian government to obtain other loans. What's more, such a decision will probably take the EBRD out of the financing of the nuclear sector altogether, one source of funding less for the nuclear industry. This would be a huge victory for the antinuclear movement.

We are looking for organizations and individuals that want to participate in this day. You don't have to be an expert on nuclear energy or anything, as we will supply you with all the necessary background information and keep you informed about the development of this international day of protest. Many people who have worked on this issue for years are ready to give you their support, in return for your energy.

If you want to join, contact of A SEED Europe, as soon as possible. We will then get in touch with you. Regular updates on the preparations for this Day of protest will be posted at this site.

Khmelnitsky 2 and Rivne 4 (K2/R4) are two partially built, Russian designed 1000 MW VVER nuclear units in Ukraine. They were left unfinished after the collapse of the Soviet Union but the Ukrainian government now intends to complete the reactors and put them into operation. This would be a tremendous threat to the whole of Europe, as the reactors are far below existing safety standards and would not be allowed to operate in any Western country.

The Ukrainian government has made the closure of the remaining reactors in Chernobyl dependent on getting loans from the West for the completion of K2/R4. Completion of the K2/R4 project is expected to cost 1.72 bil. USD. The project sponsors have approached the EBRD for a loan of 190 mil.USD for the project. Additional funding for the project will have to come from Euratom, Russia and from Export Credit Agencies from Europe, Japan and the United States.

There are signs that the EBRD is not at all keen to come up with this loan, as the project violates just about every condition the Bank has formulated for such loans * . The Bank commissioned several studies which provided enough reasons not to finance the project. However, the EBRD is under intense pressure from the Group of Seven G-7, which has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ukrainian Government to provide such loans in return for the closure of all Chernobyl reactors. Countries like France and Germany, supporting their national nuclear construction companies, are very keen that the Bank decides in favor of such a loan.

* These conditions are that the safety has to be of the highest standard, that the project must be sound in financial terms, that the project is the least cost option to solve the problem (of energy provision) and that the operators would be strong in terms of the ability to carry out the project for a long period.).

If you want to have more background information, have a look at:
A SEED Europe
CEE Bankwatch Network (NOT the offical site) (the offical EBRD

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