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Germany To Follow Angela Merkel’s Nuclear Reactor Shutdown “Timetable”
Germany is planning to completely wind down atomic energy by the end of 2022.
Germany will shut down three nuclear power plants on Friday even as Europe faces one of its worst ever energy crises, following Angela Merkel’s timetable for phasing out atomic energy.
With energy prices already on the rise and tensions higher than ever between Europe and key gas supplier Russia, the closure of the plants in Brokdorf, Grohnde and Gundremmingen could well tighten the squeeze.
The move will halve remaining nuclear capacity in Germany and reduce energy output by around four gigawatts — equivalent to the power produced by 1,000 wind turbines. Protests over the Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011 prompted former chancellor Merkel to set the wheels in motion for abandoning nuclear power just over 10 years ago.
Germany is planning to completely wind down atomic energy by the end of 2022, when it will shut its final three plants in Neckarwestheim, Essenbach and Emsland.
But with energy prices soaring across Europe, the timing of the plans coming to fruition could hardly be worse. Europe’s reference gas price, Dutch TTF, hit 187.78 euros per megawatt hour in December — 10 times higher than at the start of the year — and electricity prices are also soaring.
The spike has been fuelled by geopolitical tensions with Russia, which supplies one third of Europe’s gas. Western countries accuse Russia of limiting gas deliveries to put pressure on Europe amid tensions over the Ukraine conflict.
Moscow also wants to push through the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline, set to ship still more Russian gas to Germany.
The end of nuclear power in Germany will likely push prices up even further, according to Sebastian Herold, a professor of energy policy at the Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences.
“In the long term, the hope is that an increase in renewable energy will balance things out, but this will not be the case in the short term,” he told AFP.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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