The Limited Times

Now you can see non-English news...

EU Commissioner warns of lifetime extension for German nuclear power plants

2022-07-04T14:05:05.882Z

If France's EU Commissioner Breton has his way, Germany should keep its nuclear power plants running. You can't say, "I don't do what I could do, but expect others to deliver."



Enlarge image

EU Commissioner Thierry Breton: warning to the German government

Photo: POOL / REUTERS

According to EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, Germany should leave its nuclear power plants connected to the grid longer.

"It is extremely important to let the three German nuclear power plants that are still in operation run longer," he told the "Handelsblatt".

"For a few months at least, and in a safe way, of course."

Breton argued that extending the service life of the nuclear reactors, which are to be shut down at the end of the year, is in the interest of all of Europe.

»Vladimir Putin uses our dependence as a weapon against us.«

Referring to the federal government, which is still sticking to the nuclear phase-out, the French commissioner said: "We can't say: I'm not doing what I could do, but I expect others to deliver what I need."

Similar to the government in Paris, the French EU Commissioner sees great potential in nuclear power.

Again and again he speaks out in favor of their use and thus has a significantly different opinion on the subject than Germany, for example.

In February, French President Emmanuel Macron even announced a renaissance in nuclear power with the construction of six new and possibly eight more power plants.

Breton now said that the switch to renewable energies must be accelerated.

But the EU should ensure that its supply of the necessary minerals, such as rare earths, is secured.

“We must prevent our dependency on Russia on gas from becoming dependent on China for solar energy.” The EU must therefore promote the mining and processing of raw materials in Europe.

"We not only need mines, we also need refineries, a new industry," said Breton.

»As long as we are dependent, we are vulnerable.«

Klingbeil calls for saving gas

Germany is currently experiencing the devastating consequences of such a dependency on gas.

Like the federal government, the EU Commission also fears that Russia could stop gas supplies to Germany this month.

Four months after the start of the invasion of Ukraine, Russia has already significantly reduced its gas supplies to Europe, triggering an energy crisis in Germany as well.

SPD leader Lars Klingbeil has meanwhile warned of drastic consequences for Germany as an industrial location should Russia permanently shut down the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline.

"We are facing dramatic months," he said on the RTL and ntv program "Frühstart".

Many people with low and middle incomes are already suffering from a high burden.

"We now have to find common ways of how we as a country can get through these difficult months."

The annual maintenance work on Nord Stream 1 will start on July 11. Normally, no gas will flow for ten days.

Klingbeil warned that the worst should be expected with Putin.

"There is a probability (...) that Putin will not turn on the gas tap again after the maintenance."

Klingbeil appealed to citizens to save energy themselves.

Gas in industry should not be rationed.

“That would also have dramatic effects on the job market.

We must avoid this situation.

And everyone can contribute to this by making savings.«

Russia has already severely curtailed supplies through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline.

This caused the gas importer Uniper to experience turbulence and is demanding help from the state due to liquidity problems.

The Ministry of Economics is working "under high pressure" on solutions for the energy company, said a spokeswoman for Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens).

The federal government is in talks with the company about stabilization measures.

However, Uniper has not yet drawn an existing credit line of EUR 2 billion from the state bank KfW.

Companies like Uniper are in trouble because they currently have to buy gas at very high prices but cannot pass these prices on to customers with long-term contracts.

No decision had yet been made on how to support Uniper, it said.

One wants to legally decide on a whole set of instruments.

It is also conceivable that measures could be combined with an equity solution from the state.

It is too early to make a decision, discussions are ongoing with the company.

mmq/apr/dpa/Reuters

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2022-07-04

You may like

News/Politics 2022-03-19T16:21:13.372Z

Trends 24h

Business 2022-08-13T06:21:39.726Z

Latest

© Communities 2019 - Privacy