EU seeks nuclear power disaster insurance plan

EU to present plan for mandatory nuclear power plant disaster insurance plan

Associated Press

BRUSSELS (AP) -- The European Commission's energy chief says the bloc's executive arm will present a proposal on mandatory disaster insurance for nuclear power plants in coming weeks.

Guenther Oettinger said Tuesday the proposal should be one of the first items on the European Parliament's agenda following elections in May. He declined to elaborate.

The world's nuclear power plants have hardly any coverage. Governments implicitly guarantee they'll pay for the bulk of a disaster.

In several EU nations, required insurance only covers liabilities of a few hundred million dollars, while a worst-case scenario accident is estimated to cost up to hundreds of billions.

In the U.S., the necessary insurance for nuclear operators is capped at just $375 million per plant, with further claims funded by utilities up to a maximum of $12.6 billion.

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