Nuclear energy has been reliably providing a quarter of Germany's base load electricity for many years but in 2001 the government legislated the phasing out of nuclear power by 2021. A newly elected government vowed to reverse this decision and has now in September 2010 agreed a highly controversial deal with four big energy companies to extend the lifetime of Germany's nuclear plants again.
Scope of this research
- The background details of the German energy market including insights into the contribution made by Germany's 17 nuclear energy plants
- An in-depth guide to the details, benefits and disadvantages of the latest agreement reached by the government and the nuclear plant operators
- A balanced and informed opinion on the likely implications of the deal in light of Germany's environmental, economic, and political circumstances
Research and analysis highlights
Although Germans are very concerned about environmental degradation and climate change, 13.5% ranked the impact and legacy of toxic nuclear waste as their top environmental issue. Nuclear energy policy in Germany has therefore been dominated by consensus and compromise - a trend that is likely to continue.
As an energy intensive country Germany has been trying hard to reduce its carbon emissions and has set itself ambitious targets above EU mandated levels. Similarly, the use of renewable energy has grown at impressive rates, and Germany aims to further develop this much more strongly in the coming years by using nuclear as a bridge technology.
In return for continuing to operate nuclear plants its operators will have to pay large amounts of levies and taxes, but they will also benefit from huge profits. The deal will guarantee that the government satisfies its many goals of achieving emissions targets, affordability and energy security, but it may come at a high political price.
Key reasons to purchase this research
- Increase your understanding of the facts surrounding the decision to extend nuclear energy in Germany
- Develop your opinion on the likely impact of the agreement on the German energy market including its future outlook
- Formulate arguments for lobbying and campaigning