Skip to main content

Will Germany Flip On Nuclear Energy?

Back in March we told you about how the electrical utility executive who negotiated the planned phase-out of German nuclear power plants was predicting that the decision would eventually be reversed. Now, with perhaps some political changes in the offing, nuclear energy may be making a comeback. Here's Deutsche Welle:
After Chancellor Gerhard Schröder's center-left coalition of Social Democrats (SPD) and environmentalist Greens hammered out an agreement in 2001 with the energy industry to slowly phase out Germany's nuclear power plants, most Germans thought the subject was dead and buried.

But Schröder's decision to call for an early general election this fall after his party was trounced in a regional poll on Sunday has changed the political landscape. Suddenly, the conservative Christian Democrats (CDU) are considered favorites to form the next government in Berlin. And that has convinced many in the energy sector that reports of nuclear power's demise may have been premature.

"If the CDU wins the election, economic aspects of the power industry would take precedence over the environmental," Klaus Rauscher, head of utility Vattenfall's European operations, told the Handelsblatt newspaper.
Technorati tags: , , , , ,

Comments

Norris McDonald said…
Let's hope the CDU prevalis. However, by embracing nuclear, it does not favor the economy over the environment; it compliments the economy and the environment.

I recently debated a German anti nuclear activist on a BBC radio show and the guy was saying that wind power could replace all of the nuclear plants. He estimated that Germany already has approximately 1,000 four megawatt windmills. Does anyone know if this estimate is true? It was easy to dismantle the wind replaces nuclear argument.
Brian Spears said…
If the financial markets are any predictor, the German nuclear industry is looking better.

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/L18401482.htm
Matthew Bohun said…
The funny thing about the Germans is, they are largely self-interested and pragmatic. It suited them to vote for the Greens when they looked like the best option. I believe, however, that Gerrman voters know the difference between the polemics of the "Green" movement, and the fact of global warming and the role nuclear fueled electricity generation could play in its mitigation. I have no doubt that the German electorate will vote in favor of science and the most environmentally benign form of electricity generation - nuclear reactors.

Popular posts from this blog

Sneak Peek

There's an invisible force powering and propelling our way of life.
It's all around us. You can't feel it. Smell it. Or taste it.
But it's there all the same. And if you look close enough, you can see all the amazing and wondrous things it does.
It not only powers our cities and towns.
And all the high-tech things we love.
It gives us the power to invent.
To explore.
To discover.
To create advanced technologies.
This invisible force creates jobs out of thin air.
It adds billions to our economy.
It's on even when we're not.
And stays on no matter what Mother Nature throws at it.
This invisible force takes us to the outer reaches of outer space.
And to the very depths of our oceans.
It brings us together. And it makes us better.
And most importantly, it has the power to do all this in our lifetime while barely leaving a trace.
Some people might say it's kind of unbelievable.
They wonder, what is this new power that does all these extraordinary things?

A Design Team Pictures the Future of Nuclear Energy

For more than 100 years, the shape and location of human settlements has been defined in large part by energy and water. Cities grew up near natural resources like hydropower, and near water for agricultural, industrial and household use.

So what would the world look like with a new generation of small nuclear reactors that could provide abundant, clean energy for electricity, water pumping and desalination and industrial processes?

Hard to say with precision, but Third Way, the non-partisan think tank, asked the design team at the Washington, D.C. office of Gensler & Associates, an architecture and interior design firm that specializes in sustainable projects like a complex that houses the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. The talented designers saw a blooming desert and a cozy arctic village, an old urban mill re-purposed as an energy producer, a data center that integrates solar panels on its sprawling flat roofs, a naval base and a humming transit hub.

In the converted mill, high temperat…

Seeing the Light on Nuclear Energy

If you think that there is plenty of electricity, that the air is clean enough and that nuclear power is a just one among many options for meeting human needs, then you are probably over-focused on the United States or Western Europe. Even then, you’d be wrong.

That’s the idea at the heart of a new book, “Seeing the Light: The Case for Nuclear Power in the 21st Century,” by Scott L. Montgomery, a geoscientist and energy expert, and Thomas Graham Jr., a retired ambassador and arms control expert.


Billions of people live in energy poverty, they write, and even those who don’t, those who live in places where there is always an electric outlet or a light switch handy, we need to unmake the last 200 years of energy history, and move to non-carbon sources. Energy is integral to our lives but the authors cite a World Health Organization estimate that more than 6.5 million people die each year from air pollution.  In addition, they say, the global climate is heading for ruinous instability. E…