WEDNESDAY 13 APRIL, 2011 |
Germany To Accelerate Shift From Nuclear Power To Renewable Energy
The Fukushima nuclear power station crisis in Japan, now designated a level 7
incident - on par with Chernobyl, continues to make itself felt around the
world, with many nations reconsidering their pursuit of nuclear power sourced
According to a report on the Wall
, a draft plan from Germany's environment and economy
ministries proposes to speed up the shift from nuclear power to renewable energy and increased energy
efficiency. The draft plan outlines a 5 billion euro initiative to boost offshore
. Under the program, areas for new wind farms would be
designated, an electricity highway would bring wind generated electricity from
the north to the south and wind
in existing facilities would be upgraded.
While Germany has a reputation as being a solar power leader thanks to its
pioneering in solar
feed in tariffs
, the country also has a substantial nuclear energy industry.
Subsidised by Germany's taxpayers to the tune of billions each year, the
Fukushima crisis represented a tipping point for the nation's tolerance of
nuclear's radiation risks, spurring hundreds of thousands of German citizens to
take to the streets protesting against nuclear energy.
The fallout from the Japan incident has been such that in the German state of
Baden-Wuerttemberg, the conservative
party was ousted
after 58 years of rule as a direct result of the nuclear
crisis, with a Green led alliance gaining a majority of votes.
already shut down
7 of its own nuclear reactors and the remainder will be
subject to a safety review by the independent Reactor Safety Commission.
According to Germany's Federal
Ministry of Economics and Technology, the nation's energy
mix in 2010
consisted of the following:
Mineral oil - 33.7%
Hard coal- 12.1%
Brown coal 10.8%
Natural and petroleum gas - 21.8%
Nuclear power 10.8%
Hydro, wind and solar - 1.5%
Other renewables - 7.9%
Other sources -1.9 %
Germany's energy sector is one of the biggest in the world and the nation is
also one of Europe's largest consumers of electricity.
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