EES President Dr. Ingo Friedrich:
The nuclear pullout has to be linked to a
wider energy policy framework for the EU
Brussels, 26 April 2011. Dr. Ingo Friedrich, President of the European Economic Senate (EES) warns against a German ‘go it alone’ in its move to pull out of nuclear power. As Dr. Friedrich states, “In order that the supply of energy to Germany and Europe remains available and affordable in the future, the planned stepchange with regard the energy mix must be connected to a wider energy policy framework for the EU”. Before nuclear power stations can be shut down in Germany, the Community of European States needs an Energy Master Plan for a sustainable European energy market. According to Friedrich, this includes the security of supply, environmental compatibility, the rapid further development of renewable energy sources / transmission grids, a significant increase in efficiency, the removal of national barriers in the European electricity market and more pricing transparency in the wholesale markets for electricity.
As Dr. Friedrich stresses, “For the economic development of the EU and its Member States in the field of energy, reliable flows of energy and European safety standards are essential for nuclear power stations. I therefore support the planned pan-European stress tests for nuclear power stations”. There are currently 143 nuclear stations in Europe, 17 of which are in Germany. After the terrible accident in Japan, the EU countries have now agreed on a uniform safety test for nuclear power stations for the first time. This will especially assess all the risks that can have an impact on nuclear power stations in the case of natural disasters (such as earthquakes and floods) and even a terrorist attack / plane crash.
The energy import requirement of the EU is currently 55 percent and will increase to 75 percent over the coming 20 years. As Friedrich explains, “In order to sustainably shape the generation, transmission and consumption of energy in the long term, investments are required between nations. The change in energy policy brings with it additional costs for all that can only be paid for through a consistent, environment-based tax reform.” In addition, Friedrich stresses that it is only possible to secure the continual and secure supply of energy within the EU, the conservation of fossil fuel resources and a reduction in the dependence on energy imports (most of which come from unstable regions) on a long term basis with such a policy.