German policymakers cautiously welcome Macron’s nuclear plans
dpa / Focus Online
The decision to shut down Fessenheim, the oldest nuclear reactor in France, by mid-2020 that French President Emanuel Macron announced in a keynote speech on energy policy has been welcomed by policymakers in Germany, although many remain wary that France could pursue its energy transition towards renewables slower than expected. “We're glad that President Macron personally vouches for shutting down Fessenheim in the summer of 2020,” German environment minister Svenja Schulze was quoted in an article by the news agency dpa carried by Focus Online. “It’s important, though, that words are now followed by actions,” she added. Winfried Kretschmann, state premier of the federal state of Baden-Wurttemberg, at whose border the nuclear plant is situated, said that “I hope this now is a binding deadline that will be respected and not called into question again.”
Macron’s government decided that the target of reducing France’s reliance on nuclear power from 75 to 50 percent should only be reached by 2035, ten years later than what had been envisaged by his presidential predecessor, François Hollande. At the same time, he announced that France should be completely carbon-neutral by 2050. Owing to its nuclear capacity, France’s emissions are much lower than Germany’s.
Find the article in German here.
For more information, see the CLEW dossier The challenges of Germany’s nuclear phase-out.