Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Natural Resources, Michael Moynihan TD, has called on the Taoiseach to state if he made any representations to the British Prime Minister regarding concerns about the construction of a new nuclear power plant on the West Coast of England.

The European Commission today approved the construction of a nuclear power plant at Hinckley in Somerset.

Deputy Moynihan commented: “The decision by the European Commission today to grant state aid approval for Britain to construct a nuclear power plant only 240km from Ireland is deeply concerning.

“Britain’s other nuclear power plant at Sellafield, also located on the west coast, has resulted in the Irish Sea being called the most radioactive sea in the world. The Taoiseach has to outline whether Ireland was part of the discussions about another plant.

“Teagasc has, however, said that there was little or no consultation with Ireland in this process, which is a cause of considerable concern.

“Did the Taoiseach make any representations with UK Prime Minister David Cameron prior to this ruling by the European Commission? What environmental assessment has been conducted as to the potential impact on the Irish Sea, on our marine life and into possible air pollution?

“Ireland needs to robustly defend its interests here. We cannot stand aside and watch Britain potentially build another harmful nuclear power plant, which could have a devastating environmental impact on the Irish Sea and on the Irish East Coast.”