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Energy security: the Union puts pressure on the debate on the operating life of nuclear power plants

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Status: 05.07.2022 6:10 p.m.

This week, the Union wants to submit a request for an extension of the life of the nuclear power plant – and is putting pressure on the FDP. It is also more pro-nuclear – unlike its coalition partner. Of the SPD he says: Debate harms business location.

Given the looming gas crisis, the Union faction wants the Bundestag to decide on a longer term for nuclear power plants. CSU regional group leader Alexander Dobrindt announced that his parliamentary group would table a corresponding amendment on Thursday alongside the vote on a possible longer life for coal-fired power plants. This should allow the federal government to let nuclear power plants operate longer in the same system.

Spahn: as much electricity supply as possible

In the app who dem ARD Capital Studio was exclusively available, it is said that the traffic light coalition must provide gas substitutes and alternatives more quickly. In addition, energy should be saved earlier. Deputy CDU parliamentary group leader Jens Spahn said that in this serious situation, action must be taken quickly, decisively and pragmatically. “If all the necessary steps are not taken now, it will catch up with us by winter at the latest.” Nuclear power plants still in operation would currently supply 6-7% of Germany’s electricity, says Spahn: “We need as much electricity as possible.

The Union faction will likely want to highlight the differing opinions in the traffic light government with the proposed roll-call vote. Of the three coalition partners, one is longer-term: the FDP. She had increased pressure on coalition partners, the SPD and the Greens, to keep the last three nuclear power plants in Germany running in the face of rising energy prices. “It is high time to ensure the continued operation of nuclear power plants for at least five years,” said FDP Deputy Chairman Wolfgang Kubicki recently.

The Union declares: “The traffic light must now show its true colors when it comes to nuclear energy: the FDP must show if it maintains its position, and the Greens and the SPD if they renounce their ideological blockade.

The AfD is considering its own application

The AfD parliamentary group also wants to present a draft amendment to the Atomic Energy Act to parliament this week, as announced by the first parliamentary director Bernd Baumann. Given the energy crisis, he called the closure of “existing and fully functional nuclear power plants” “extremely absurd”. According to the AfD, an extension of the duration is technically and organizationally possible.

Three nuclear power plants are still in operation in Germany: in Lingen, Neckarwestheim and near Landshut. They should be extinct by the end of this year.

SPD and Greens against longer deadlines

SPD leader Lars Klingbeil again rejected a term extension to secure energy supplies. “Nuclear energy is not a solution to this,” he said at an event of the SPD’s economic forum. “Whoever leads this discussion will end up harming Germany as a business location.” Klingbeil referred to the purchase of fuel elements, the recruitment of personnel or recent security checks that were not carried out. It must now be a question of procuring gas, of expanding the alternatives and also of letting coal-fired power stations operate longer. Operators of nuclear power plants see at least high obstacles.

Economy Minister Robert Habeck and Environment Minister Steffi Lemke had also advised against extending the operating life of nuclear power plants. “A small contribution to energy supply would preclude major economic, legal and security risks,” said a joint test report from eco-led ministries.

EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton believes Germany should keep its nuclear power plants connected to the grid longer. “It is extremely important to let the three German nuclear power plants still in operation operate longer,” he told “Handelsblatt”. “At least for a few months and of course safe.” Breton argued that extending the life of nuclear reactors is in the interest of all of Europe.

Catholics warn EU

The European Commission is considering temporarily classifying nuclear energy and gas as environmentally friendly energies. The European Parliament wanted to decide on Tuesday. The classification as sustainable under the taxonomy aims to stimulate investment in certain economic sectors.

The chairwoman of the Central Committee of German Catholics, Irme Stetter-Karp, said that nuclear power and natural gas should not be declared environmentally sustainable energy sources. Stetter-Karp criticized in Berlin that if the corresponding proposal of the European Commission were to pass, economic investments in gas and nuclear energy would be encouraged over a long period. “It would not be an ethically sustainable investment.” This not only undermines the goals of transformation, but also “deliberately favors investment in sectors with devastating ecological effects and risks”.

With information from Michael Stempfle, studio capital ARD

Source www.tagesschau.de

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