For three remaining nuclear reactors: “Economy” Grimm for longer nuclear power plant runtimes

For three remaining nuclear reactors
“Economical” Grimm for longer nuclear power plant runtimes

Russia’s curbing of gas supplies has reignited the debate about extending the service life. Grimm’s “economy” not only calls for longer runtimes for nuclear power plants. All levers should also be set in motion to store gas.

“Wirtschaftswise” Veronika Grimm has spoken out in favor of longer running times for the three remaining German nuclear power plants. “For the coming years, in which we will not have enough renewable energies available, the extension of the lifetime of the nuclear power plants can give some breathing room,” Grimm told the newspapers of the Funke media group.

The nuclear reactors are supposed to go offline at the end of 2022. However, Russia’s throttling of gas supplies has reignited the debate about extending the service life. The economist, a member of the German Council of Economic Experts, warned that supply chains would collapse if Russia stopped supplying gas to Germany. “The effects would then have to be addressed with state aid measures, similar to those in the corona pandemic: corporate aid and short-time work,” said Grimm.

Depending on the scenario, a Russian halt to gas deliveries would drop German economic output by 0.5 to 6 percent, in extreme cases even by 12 percent. “The smaller the gas gap, the smaller the impact on the supply chain. That’s why it’s now important to pull out all the stops to save gas,” warned Grimm. There should be incentives for households to save gas.

Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder calls for the continued operation of the Isar 2 nuclear power plant and sees no shortage of fuel rods. “According to our information, many experts believe it is possible. This is also confirmed by a report by TÜV Süd, which was commissioned by the Bavarian Ministry of the Environment,” Söder told the “Münchner Merkur”. “Accordingly, Isar 2 could generate 100 percent electricity by the end of the year – and with the existing fuel rods then another five terawatt hours for six months. By then we would have new fuel elements again.” Söder demanded speed: “So it’s a political decision and not a technical one. But every day that the traffic light passes makes it more difficult.”

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