France to invest EUR1bn in nuclear power

French president Nicholas Sarkozy announced that his government has decided to make a massive investment, totalling EUR1bn ($1.4bn), in nuclear power, a move that is contrary to several of its neighbours.
 
He said: “We are going to devote EUR1bn to the nuclear programme of the future, particularly fourth-generation technology. We are also going to release substantial resources from the loan to strengthen research in nuclear safety.”
 
He added that abandoning nuclear energy “makes no sense, as there is no alternative to nuclear energy today.”
 
Sarkozy also dismissed safety concerned triggered by Japan’s Fukushima accident, saying that, “French nuclear power stations are more expensive because they are safer.”
 
The president also pledged an investment of EUR1.35bn in renewable energies, stating that his government was still investing “massively” in that sector.
 
Close to 80 per cent of France’s power comes from its 58 nuclear reactors. It is currently the world’s largest exporter of electricity that has been generated from nuclear sources.
 
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