20 Feb 2020, 13:44
Rachel Waldholz

France to shut down contentious Fessenheim nuclear plant on German border

dpa / Rheinische Post

The French government has announced plans to shut down its oldest nuclear power plant, Fessenheim, which sits right on the German border, newswire dpa reports in an article carried by the Rheinische Post. German politicians have called for the plant to be taken offline for years. One of the plant’s two reactors will shut down this weekend, while the other will cease operation by the end of June. It will be the first nuclear plant to shut down as part of President Emmanuel Macron’s new energy strategy, the article says. France is heavily reliant on nuclear power, which provides some 75 percent the country’s electricity, dpa reports. But Macron has announced plans to shut down 14 of the country’s 58 reactors by 2035, while expanding renewable energy.

France’s approach diverges strongly from its neighbour Germany, which has a long history of anti-nuclear activism and has committed to phasing out all nuclear power by 2022. The Fessenheim plant for long has been a contentious issue for the two neighbour countries, with local politicians from Germany calling for decommission already for several years.

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