Sorry, but at the moment some of the slideshows on this website will not work on an iPad, tablet or phone, only on a PC or laptop running Flash. I am currently updating slideshows, so do try again soon.

Côteaux du Tricastin

Two huge nuclear complexes, Cruas Meysse and Tricastin, are camped out in the Rhône Valley, to the North and South of Montélimar. Brought on line in the early 80s they produce around 12% of Frances's electricity.

Both are highly visible, bordering the Nationale 7, formerly the main road from Paris to the South, and the river Rhône, a major shipping highway. The newer Autoroute du Soleil (A7) linking Lyon and Marseilles runs close by, loping through the Rhône Valley, as do the TGV and local train lines.

On the other side of the N7, to the east of Montelimar, the Drôme Provençale stretches out across the Rhône valley to the Alps. A lush lavander-scented landscape with ancient farm buildings of substance in the rich, alluvial plains and a growing crop of wind farms on higher ground as the Frence power indistry diversifies into renewable energy.

In the past, the French were quite relaxed about nuclear power, which proved succesful and profitable. However, a leak of uranium solution at Tricastin in July 2008 led to a drop in wine sales and the Côteaux du Tricastin appellation changing its name to Grignan-Les Adhémar to avoid the commercial fall-out.