Germany commits to end nuclear power

Germany will phase out all of its nuclear power and replace it with renewables in just over a decade, the county's chancellor announced yesterday (May 30).

Angela Merkel who leads the country’s conservative majority coalition will close all German nuclear power plants by 2022.

The decision comes after a wide reaching review of nuclear infrastructure following the Fukishima disaster earlier this year.

Germany has already shut down a number of pre-1980 constructed plants and said these will now never be reactivated.

However, it will now close an eight plant – which is currently offline – and a further six others would be decommissioned by 2021, with the three newest closing in 2022.

In a move which the German’s clearly consider itself to be taking global leadership chancellor Merkel hopes to make up the shortfall in power by cutting energy consumption and boosting renewables.

Germany has in previous years cut subsidies to coal power plants and pushed funding towards renewables.

But around 35% of the country’s energy currently comes from nuclear and only about 14% produced by renewables.

Under the plans with the nuclear gone renewable power would be expanded to fill the gap, with energy reduction measures of 10% a year put in place to cover any shortfall.

Chancellor Merkel said: “I am very pleased with what we have achieved here, this marks major progress.”

Luke Walsh

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