Macron facing NUCLEAR nightmare as scorching heatwave cripples SIX reactors

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Experts have warned that parts of France are currently facing a “heat apocalypse” as temperatures reach record levels across Europe. Aside from triggering horrifying forest fires, these scorching temperatures are now also threatening to worsen France’s energy crisis. As a result of higher temperatures, rivers like the Rhone and Rhine, which are used by nuclear power plants for cooling, have become too warm to be used in the energy generation process.

Without cooler water supplies, six nuclear power plants in France have been forced to reduce their output drastically.

These include the Golfech power station, which lies on the Garonne river and had to reduce its production by 1000MW since July 13.

Meanwhile, along the Rhone river, the Tricastin power plant had to reduce production by 735MW last week, while St Alban and Bugey power plants reached the river water temperature limits on the 17th and 19th of this month respectively.

Aside from these, Blayais on Gironde estuary, and the Doel 1 nuclear power station in Belgium, which is partly owned by EDF, have also reached their limit.

EDF’s nuclear plants along these rivers use the waters to regulate the temperature of their reactors, discharging warm water back into the waterway.

Regulations are in place that limits reactor production during times of high heat to prevent the process from damaging local wildlife.

However, these rules could soon be scrapped at the cost of regional flora and fauna, as France’s nuclear safety authority green-lighted “temporary modification” of regulations for Blayais, Golfech and St Alban nuclear power plants.

Energy expert Thibault Laconde tweeted: “To state the obvious, it also highlights the vulnerability of #nuclear power to climate change, in particular the vulnerability of ‘French-style’ nuclear power, with its large reactors, large power plants and therefore large cooling needs.

“Climate change has to be factored in nuclear projects.

“Especially as France is preparing to renew its fleet, it would be unimaginable to build reactors if we cannot demonstrate that they will be able to operate with the #climate they will experience throughout their lifetime”

The heatwave crippling nuclear power plants could be devasting for Mr Macron, as France has already been suffering a major energy crisis after half of EDF’s ageing nuclear power plants were forced to shut down recently over safety concerns.

Experts have previously warned Mr Macron of significant corrosion safety problems in EDF nuclear power plants in France as cracks were detected in some nuclear reactors.

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Speaking to, Dr Bernard Laponche, the co-author of a recent study on EDF’s reactors warned that cracks in the cooling systems of many of these reactors could result in horrifying disasters that are only comparable to events like “Three Mile Island or Fukushima”.

As a result of these corrosion problems, four 1500 MW, seven 1300 MW and one 900 MW reactors are shut down.

As a result of these reactor shut downs, EDF has been forced to lower its power output this year, amidst fears of a disastrous winter where fears grow Vladimir Putin could cut Europe off its gas supply.

Dr Laponche also warned that more reactor shutdowns could happen in the future, as EDF power stations are currently under investigation for similar reactor flaws.

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