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Forerunners or scaremongers? Germany to abandon nuclear power. OSW Commentary No. 58, 2011-07-21

Kwiatkowska-Drozdz, Anna (2011) Forerunners or scaremongers? Germany to abandon nuclear power. OSW Commentary No. 58, 2011-07-21. [Policy Paper]

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    The German government’s final decision to abandon nuclear power as of 2022 has been expected for months. However, instead of calming the waters, providing solutions and answering the question ‘What next?’, it has only fanned the flames. Even the adoption of legal amendments enforcing the government’s decision by the German parliament (both the Bundestag and the Bundesrat) in late June and early July has not calmed the situation. It is more than apparent that these decisions have been made under emotional pressure: there was not enough time for accurate calculations to be made and consideration to be given to the consequences of Germany abandoning nuclear power. Chancellor Angela Merkel has so far been unable to fully convince the public that the ‘energy shift is a huge opportunity’ and that this process will be carried out on condition that ‘the supplies remain secure, the climate protected and the whole process economically efficient’1. German economic associations have warned against a politically motivated, ill-judged and irreversible abandonment of nuclear energy. They are anxious about an increase in electricity prices, the instability of supplies and environmental damage. The government believes, however, that green technologies will become a new driving force for the German economy and its main export commodity. Before that happens the industry will have to increase its use of electricity produced from fossil fuels, mainly natural gas imported from Russia. This may be exploited by Gazprom which will try to strengthen its position on the German market, and thus in the entire EU.

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    Item Type: Policy Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > energy policy (Including international arena)
    Countries > Germany
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Centre for Eastern Studies (OSW) > OSW Commentary
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 12 Dec 2014 14:44
    Number of Pages: 5
    Last Modified: 12 Dec 2014 14:44

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