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STOP the construction of Nuclear Plants in Akkuyu and Sinop (Turkey)
The Fukushima nuclear accident brought back in light, in the most dramatic and direct way, the great dangers entailed by the use of nuclear power, even in technologically advanced states like Japan. As Jonathan Schell states: “Control over nuclear power is the most dangerous fantasy” (Eleftherotypia Newspaper, 2/4/11).
The issue calls for more than mediocre solutions, since there is no space for skilful neutralities nor compromises. The dissent against those supporting nuclear power as a “clean” source of energy or as an inevitable solution must be explicit. After all, current scientific evidence and socio-environmentally conscientious development patterns suggest otherwise. Yet, in the last 30 years, a number of development options have emerged, which are based primarily on the use of alternative sources of energy, which are still, not adequately applied or are degraded due to specific interests.
Most of the times, discussions on the use and impacts of nuclear power burst after nuclear accidents, meaning cases of emergency including most of the times leakages of radiation (e.g. the Fukushima accident). What we usually fail to consider is the possibility of a number of unpredictable incidents and technical failures (e.g. meltdown of a nuclear reactor, explosions, fires, coolant leakages etc.) which may occur during the normal operation of the plant or as a result of prolonged usage exceeding its lifetime.
Recently the Turkish Government announced its intention to construct two nuclear plants in Akkuyu (in the southern province of Mersin) and in the city of Sinop near the Black Sea. Taking into account the specificities of the area (seismic and cultural characteristics), this decision bares a great risk for the Aegean Region. It is no coincidence that during the last months strong opposition movements from Turkish scientists and the local population took place, gathering signatures and demanding for a referendum.
The University of the Aegean, owes to consider and support the concerns of the population of the area, where it has been founded and now functions. Over the years, the University has undertaken important initiatives on several environmental and cultural issues related to the development and preservation of a region unique in cultural and environmental resources.
In this regard, and during the crucial moments our country is facing, we consider it necessary to highlight the importance of another development pattern, of lower risk for the communities and the environment of the Aegean Sea. In this perspective, nuclear power should not be an option and this has to be clearly stated to Greece, Turkey and worldwide.
The initiative undertaken by the Rectorate of the University of the Aegean, aims at mobilizing the academic community and conscious citizens and organisations in Turkey, Greece and worldwide to demonstrate their opposition against the construction of the two nuclear plants in Akkuyu and Sinop, through the collection of their signatures.
The Rectorate of the University of the Aegean
Professor Paris Tsartas, Rector
Associate Professor Nikolaos Soulakellis, Vice Rector of Academic Affairs and Student Welfare
Professor Angelique Dimitracopoulou, Vice Rector of Research and Strategic Management
Professor Ioannis Kallas, Vice Rector of Finance and Development
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