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Germany Will Be Nuclear-Free by 2022

Germany’s government agreed early today to shut down all the country’s nuclear power plants by 2022, making it the first major industrialized nation in the last 25 years to go nuclear-free.

What’s the Latest Development?

A political consensus has emerged from Germany’s coalition government to shut down all of its nuclear power plants by 2022. Norbert Röttgen, the country’s environment minister, said that the nature of the agreement is what is most pleasing: a clear cross-party decision to end the German nuclear power industry. “‘This is coherent. It is clear,’ Röttgen told reporters in Berlin. ‘That’s why it is a good result.’ … ‘We want the electricity of the future to be safe, reliable and economically viable,’ Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters on Monday.”

What’s the Big Idea?

Germany, Europe’s largest economy, stands alone among the world’s major industrialized nations still using nuclear power in its determination to gradually replace it with renewable-energy sources. “Germany’s energy supply chain ‘needs a new architecture,’ necessitating huge efforts in boosting renewable energies, efficiency gains and overhauling the electricity grid, Merkl said. ‘We have to follow a new path.’ … Many Germans have been vehemently opposed to nuclear power since the Chernobyl disaster sent radioactive fallout over the country.”


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