International Fury About Radioactive Baltic - Press Release from the International Anti-Nuclear Festival, Olkiluoto, Finland

For immediate release 30 June 2008, contact: +358 46 664 5130

International Fury About Radioactive Baltic - Press Release from the International Anti-Nuclear Festival, Olkiluoto, Finland

Campaigners at the International Anti-Nuclear Festival in Finland reacted with dismay today at being presented with news that the Baltic Sea is already the most radioactive body of water in the world, even before the construction of the new facilities at Olkiluoto nuclear power plant.

“The levels of anthropogenic radionuclides [man-made radioactive particles] are higher in the Baltic Sea than in any other water bodies around the world” according to a Helsinki Commission report [1].  By the early 1990s the Swedish Defence Research Establishment  had already found higher levels of radioactive Caesium-137 in fish from the Baltic than from any other sea [2].

Also presented was a recent study by academics from Oxford University that the number of fish killed each year by coastal power stations could be up to half the total commercial fish catch [3], at times when fish stocks are already under huge pressure.

There was also concern at satellite photos showing large areas of hot water originating from the nuclear power plants cooling system.  Heating of the oceans is a known catalyst for eutrophication and contributes to climate change.

“The Baltic is already the most radioactive sea in the world.  Even a child would realise that building a new, bigger reactor and a nuclear waste dump next to the Baltic isn't a good idea.  Yet this is exactly what is currently happening at Olkiluoto.” said Per Hegelund at the camp.

“We can't do much about the radioactivity already there but we can certainly avoid adding to it.  Building more reactors along the Baltic is just adding fuel to the nuclear fire” added Anna-Linnéa Rundberg.  “We should stop building Olkiluoto 3 immediately, phase out the other nuclear reactors as soon as possible and rule out all coastal locations as options for the final waste repository”.

Camp media phone:  +358 46 664 5130
English language media:  +358 40 079 2460

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Notes to Editors

  • The International Anti-Nuclear Festival is took place from June 23-28 near the construction site of the world’s largest nuclear power station, at Olkiluoto in western Finland.
  • The seminars and protest camp aim to raise awareness about problems arising from the resurgence of nuclear power, to network and strategize a global civil society resistance to the new nuclear threats.
  • Participants for the camp have come from several countries. The camp is organized by a broad coalition of environmental movements, social justice organizations and concerned individuals.

[1]   'Hazardous Substances in the Baltic Sea – Draft HELCOM Thematic Assessment in 2006'  The quote is from page 11 – and the report can be downloaded from:

[2]   'Radioactive sources of main radiological concern in the Kola-Barents region'.  Executive summary R.Bergman, A.Baklanov - FRN, Stockholm; and FOA, Umeå 1998