Bulgaria's Upcoming Nuclear Power Referendum To Reference No Specific Project

Bulgaria's Upcoming Nuclear Power Referendum To Reference No Specific Project

Bulgaria's parliament decided on Wednesday that the ballot in an upcoming referendum on the future of nuclear energy in the country would not include a reference to a specific power plant project.

"The MPs decided on holding a referendum on the construction of a nuclear plant in the country, in which the question would be worded as follows: Should we develop nuclear energy in the Republic of Bulgaria by building a new nuclear plant," the National Assembly said in a statement posted on its website.

A total of 101 MPs voted in favour and seven were against with no abstentions. The MPs of two of the opposition formations, the left-wing Coalition for Bulgaria and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, did not take part in the vote.

The question was formulated by the parliamentary group of the ruling centre-right party GERB after earlier this year the socialists initiated a sign-in campaign in support of holding a referendum with a question worded "Should the nuclear power industry in Bulgaria develop through the construction of a nuclear power plant at the Belene site?"

A total of 543,639 signatures were collected in the campaign. The minimum number of authentic signatures required for a referendum to be called is 500,000.

Earlier this year, the government decided to abandon the project to build a nuclear power plant in the Danubian town of Belene and instead approved plans to raise the capacity of Bulgaria's existing nuclear station in Kozloduy.

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