Cold snap forces Germany to restart nuclear reactors: report

8th February 2012, Comments 1 comment

The cold snap gripping Europe has forced Germany, which decided last year to abandon nuclear power, to bring several reactors back on line, the daily Handelsblatt reports in its Thursday issue.

The cold related surge in electricity demand prompted Germany's network operators to call upon nuclear power plants left in reserve as a "preventative measure", a spokeswoman for Tennet, one of the operators, told the newspaper.

In the wake of the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan last March, which prompted radiation to leak at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, Germany decided to phase out nuclear power by 2022.

Eight of Germany's 17 reactors were immediately taken off line, but five of them are serving as reserve generators in case electricity demand cannot be met from other sources.

In December, Germany imported power from neighbouring Austria to stabilise its network.

© 2012 AFP

1 Comment To This Article

  • Jan Haverkamp - Greenpeace posted:

    on 11th February 2012, 20:51:37 - Reply

    I am sorry, but this is a hoax. AFP mangled an article from Handelsblatt. In fact, Handelsblatt never wrote this.

    Slovak newspaper SME explained it on their website:

    Fact is that none of the closed German NPPs are in reserve according to a decision of the German regulator. Restarting them would be illegal because their license has been taken back.

    True is that the German regulator brought some oil and coal capacity from cold shut down into spinning stand by in case there would be emergencies. To my knowledge, this extra capacity has not been called upon so far, because there is still sufficient capacity, partly due to a large amount of solar power in the South of Germany. In fact, Germany has over the last weeks exported electricity to France, which is in problems exactly because of its addiction to nuclear electricity.

    Painful that you fell into this.