The Reds are actually Greenpeace activists. "With this action Greenpeace is asking F.Hollande, the red president of the "Grande Nation", to come up with his plans to close "Triscastin". This plant is among the five most dangerous in France," (statement made by Greenpeace justifying the action.)
In the context of security, noteworthy is the fact that the 20 activists were still walking around for over 30 minutes in the power plant. Nobody seems to care, despite the fact the the red colored overalls in nuclear plants are not common. Imagine 20 guys, dressed in red, armed with AK47 and till someone noticed that these red guys are actually not part of the official personnel. There is still a lot to think about for the security priests. Well, never mind ...
Because does it really matter? The Tricastin plant really should shut down. Not only because of its close proximity, 200 km distance to Marseilles, Frances second largest city.
The region has roughly 250 sunny days per year, we know for quite a while about this so called solar technology. There are mountains not useful for any agricultural use, but the French administration is in the hands of the monopolist Areva and EDF who dominate the supply with energy. Their far foreseeing management with unprecedented and incomparable high wages is still clinging on to the dreams of the 1980/90 that there will be Uranium forever and if there a problems, they are forcing the currently president in charge to invade such remote places like Niger, Mali etc where they have their mines. The costs of these wars are straight put on to the tax payer. That's why "defense" is such a great democratic thing, everybody has the pleasure to contribute. If this is not democratic...
Greenpeace said to honor his very own promises Hollande had made during his election campaign it is now the time to close at least 10 reactors by 2017 and 20 by 2020. The problem lies within the system: while French energy companies, spoiled by decades of seemingly unlimited availability of uranium has not bothered to invest in other forms to generate energy, especially in renewable solar farms the government is putting its head into the sand waiting till something is happened with these old reactors. To include Triscastin into those reactors which have to be closed, because it was built over 30 years ago, has a track record of failures is actually a must because its better having no electricity then being "shining".
To give you a glimpse of what is happened if something serious is happens: the impact will be roughly 10 times worse then Chernobyl, - four 900 mega watt reactors. The coolant water must be highly pressurized to remain liquid at high temperatures. This requires high strength piping and a heavy pressure vessel and hence increases construction costs. The high temperature water coolant with boric acid dissolved in it is corrosive to carbon steel (but not stainless steel); this has caused in the past in Tricastin Plant radioactive corrosion products who then circulated in the primary coolant loop. But of course it was never really made public.
Action à la centrale de Tricastin – liveblog