Nuclear scare stirs up Sweden

Sweden was hit with the second nuclear scare in recent months after an 'explosive' fire at a transformer, which led to the shut-down of a reactor this week.

The Ringhals 3 nuclear reactor in south-west Sweden was shut down on Monday night after a major explosion at a transformer 200 meters away.

The safety scare follows July’s incident at Sweden’s Forsmark nuclear reactor, which one nuclear expert termed “almost as serious” as Chernobyl.

The Forsmark incident saw back-up generators fail during a power cut, led to the shut-down of four of the country’s nuclear reactors, and brought anti-nuclear protesters onto the streets of Swedish and German cities.

Nuclear power remains a controversial issue in Sweden, which relies on ten nuclear reactors for almost half of its electricity.

The government promised over 25 years ago to wean the country off nuclear power by 2010 following a referendum on the issue, but is now having second thoughts with climate change and energy security considerations high on the political agenda.

Goska Romanowicz

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