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COGEMA's Group Employee Council to review conditions for stopping MOX production at the Cadarache plant

Press release

January 21, 2003

The Group Employee Council of COGEMA will meet on 10 February, to begin reviewing the project of stopping the commercial MOX fuel production at COGEMA-Cadarache plant by 31 July 2003 and the subsequent consequences for the personnel.

The Cadarache plant, which employs 306 people, went into operation in 1962, before earthquake protection regulations for the region were made more stringent. Studies showed that upgrading the facility to the new standards would not be feasible at both technical or economical levels.

Therefore, with the agreement of the French nuclear security authority, COGEMA proposed in the autumn of 2000 to the ministries responsible for the environment and industry to transfer all its MOX fuel production to the MELOX plant. Also located in southern France, this more recent facility meets the strictest security, safety and environmental standards.

The Cadarache plant is currently producing MOX Fuel for the German clients of COGEMA.
By allowing the Group to meet its commercial commitments, a positive outcome of the public inquiry currently being conducted in the vicinity of MELOX would help ease the labor, industrial and commercial consequences of ending MOX production at Cadarache.

In this framework some Cadarache employees will be offered identical jobs at MELOX. Shutting down and dismantling the Cadarache facilities will provide work for about 160 others on site. The remaining staff will be offered transfer or new jobs in other entities of the COGEMA Group or the Atomic Energy Commission (CEA).