Kretschmer wants to keep the nuclear reactor connected to the grid for years to come

Dresden (dpa) – Saxony’s Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer believes that, in view of the energy crisis with extremely high gas and electricity prices, a significant extension of the nuclear lifespan is necessary.

“If we look at the period for the search for a repository, it is not decisive whether the German nuclear power plants will remain online for 5, 10 or 15 years,” said the deputy CDU chairman to the newspapers of the “Funke Mediengruppe”. “By that I don’t just mean the three remaining reactors, but all those that can be reactivated. We can’t afford ideology in the current situation.”

Discussion about remaining nuclear power plants

Since Russia has been delivering less gas to Germany as part of its war of aggression against Ukraine, there has been discussion about longer operation of the three remaining nuclear power plants in Germany. Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) plans to keep two power plants operational until mid-April in the event of bottlenecks: Isar 2 (Bavaria) and Neckarwestheim (Baden-Württemberg). After the nuclear phase-out decided under the former Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), all German nuclear power plants should actually go offline by the end of the year.

Kretschmer said it was about a “new energy transition”. A commission of experts must be set up for this. “Of course we have to become climate-neutral. So far, gas was planned as a bridging technology. It probably won’t work that way, so we need a new way together,” he said, referring to the gas shortage as a result of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine. Nuclear power is a CO2-free form of energy. The piles would have to remain online “as long as we need them”.

Kretschmer: Sanctions have contributed to the shortage situation

“We are currently experiencing that we cannot do without Russian gas. Our sanctions also caused this shortage,” Kretschmer continued. In this “extreme energy emergency” everyone would have to work together to get gas prices down again.

“We have to take all measures to do this. It’s about gas from Qatar, the development of gas wells in Germany and, in due course, Russian gas again,” said the CDU politician. “It must be our goal to get gas from Russia again after the end of the attack on Ukraine.” The current gas price is ruining German industry.

© dpa-infocom, dpa:220924-99-878798/2

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