Yes, We Can Save German Nukes!
Government announces new "stress test" to reconsider nuclear plant closures
For years, the conventional wisdom has been that there is no point in trying to save Germany’s nuclear plants. Such pessimism even infected many pro-nuclear people. “It’s over for nuclear in Germany,” claimed a nuclear pessimist just 10 days ago.
Happily, pro-nuclear Germans never gave up, and their arguments are starting to have national impact. “Nuclear power does help,” read the above-the-fold headline in the weekend edition of the influential newspaper, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ).
The editorial was written by the newspaper’s politics editor, Morten Freidel. “The federal government says there is no point in letting nuclear power plants run longer,” wrote Freidel. “But that's not true. Point by point one can refute their arguments. In truth, nuclear power can solve a lot of problems.”
Positive media attention for nuclear is, of course, not enough. “It’s too bad this wasn’t written two years ago,” tweeted pro-nuclear leader Anna Vero Wendland. “Rainer Moormann and I — with a view to climate protection and Russian energy dependency — sounded the alarm and sent a memo to the Bundestag. It was decided that the topic was politically dead forever. And yet, at that time, it was still possible to change course.”
But now, just a few hours ago, Der Spiegel, reported that the federal government is “leaving a door open for the continued operation of the three remaining nuclear power plants in Germany beyond the end of the year."
The news comes on the heels of a report by Die Welt that Germany’s Economy and Climate Minister, Robert Habeck, a member of the Green Party, has been lying to the world since February, falsely claiming that the nation’s nuclear plants can’t run for lack of fuel rods. And today, the German newspaper, Tichys Einblick, published a translated version of my article.
Given Habeck’s history of lying to the public, it’s not clear if the latest announcement is for real. His spokesperson announced a “stress test” on the security of the power supply and said it would be “the basis of decisions.”
But there already was a stress test in March, notes Der Spiegel. If nothing is changed, three nuclear power plants, Isar 2, Emsland, and Neckarwestheim 2, will shut down on December 31, 2022, if not earlier. "Nevertheless,” said a spokesperson for Habeck’s Ministry of the Economy, “let's calculate again and then decide on the basis of clear facts.”
What, exactly, is going on in Germany? And what can we expect to happen next?
Nuclear For Life!
This morning I flew to Berlin, Germany to participate in a pro-nuclear demonstration tomorrow being sponsored by our allies at Nuklearia, a grassroots movement. They are calling their demonstration, “Kernkraft for Life,” or “Nuclear Power for Life.” They want to draw attention to the fact that people will die, around the world, if Germany reduces the global supply of natural gas due to its closure of nuclear plants.