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Germany To Ditch Nuclear Power By 2022

In the wake of Japan’s nuclear disaster, Germany says it will go cold turkey on nuclear power. Shut it all down. It’s a big step. We’ll look at that decision.

People ride their bikes and hold flags reading "Nuclear power? No thanks" during a demonstration at the nuclear power plant of Biblis in Germany, April 25. (AP)

People ride their bikes and hold flags reading "Nuclear power? No thanks" during a demonstration at the nuclear power plant of Biblis in Germany, April 25. (AP)

The latest fallout from the nuclear meltdowns in Japan is in Germany.

Europe’s industrial powerhouse announced this week it will go cold turkey on nuclear power. By 2022, all of Germany’s nuclear reactors will be shut down. Done. Germany’s energy, said the chancellor, must be safer.

It’s a big about-face for Europe’s economic engine. It’s highly political. And it presents Germany with a huge alternative energy challenge: How to replace nearly a quarter of its electric power generation in just eleven years.

This hour On Point: Germany slams the brakes on nuclear power.

- Tom Ashbrook

Guests:

Marcel Vietor, program officer for energy and climate, Alfred von Oppenheim-Center for European Policy Studies at the German Council on Foreign Relations.

Arne Jungjohann, director for the Environment and Global Dialogue Program in the Washington office of the Heinrich Boll Foundation of North America. He is former senior adviser for the Green Party in the German Bundestag, the country’s legislative body. He worked on the implementation of the EU’s emissions trading scheme and on Germany’s Renewable Energy Act.

Charles Ebinger, director of the Brooking Institution’s Energy Security Initiative. Ebinger has served as an energy policy adviser to more than 50 governments and is an adjunct professor of Electricity Economics at Johns Hopkins Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.

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