What a Swiss nuclear disaster could do to Europe

Source(s): swissinfo.ch - International Service of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation

By Susan Misicka

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A Swiss-led study has calculated the potential effect of nuclear meltdowns on the health of people living nearby. Its focus is on how meteorology and geography would influence the movement of a radioactive cloud.

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The research team used the weather conditions throughout 2017 to calculate the fallout of disasters at the Swiss reactors and concluded that 16-24 million Europeans would be affected by a nuclear meltdown in Switzerland, which itself has a population of 8.5 million. They reckoned that 12,500-31,100 people would die on account of cancer and heart problems caused by the radiation. On top of that, there would be additional health problems, including genetic maladies and sterility.

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“The Swiss nuclear power plants have been designed, built and regularly retrofitted in such a way that they can cope with severe accidents,” explained a swissnuclear spokeswoman, calling the situation described by the study an “unrealistic event”.

“Thanks to multiple and independent safety systems, it is extremely unlikely that a serious accident will occur.”

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