German Economy Minister On Extending Nuclear Power Plants: “It Is The Wrong Decision”

German Economy Minister Robert Habeck said on Sunday that extending the life of the country’s three remaining nuclear power plants should be ruled out, given the little gas it would contribute to the state resources as Berlin heads for a much colder winter.

“It is the wrong decision given the little we would save,” said Habeck, a member of the Green party.

The economy minister’s recent pronouncements evoke his earlier contentions against prolonging the dependence on nuclear energy, suggesting building LNG terminals instead. The former administration started the legislation to close down the last of the country’s nuclear power. But recent developments with the tension between Russia and Europe, and the weaponization of energy exports through tightening the gas flow on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline have revitalized the debate on extending the plants’ lives.

Habeck added that opening up the nuclear plants would only save at most 2% of gas usage. After several shutdowns in 2021, Germany currently still has three nuclear power plants running to provide 11% of the country’s electricity.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said earlier this month that it might “make sense” to extend the life of the country’s last nuclear power plants to contribute to the nation’s energy sources. The nation’s leader is awaiting the results of the stress test conducted on the reactors to arrive at a decision, but also noting that the technology is problematic based on France’s situation that half of its nuclear plants are offline due corrosion and maintenance issues.

Instead, renewable energy plants would cost less than building new nuclear reactors, leading to lesser rise in energy prices.

Habeck, however, noted that he is open to extending the life of the one nuclear power plant in Bavaria if the stress test results would show that it can ensure the stability of electric supply in winter.

Germany’s nuclear energy policy has been a point of debate among the country’s political parties. Scholz’s own party Social Democrats and the Green Party have opposed extending the life of the nuclear plants while the Free Democrats have been pushing for it.

Information for this briefing was found via Reuters. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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