Germany Extends Three Reactors Through April

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Policy, Government 26809392-germany-reichstag-governement

Germany's coalition government this week moved forward with plans to allow not just two — but three — power reactors to operate until next Apr. 15. On Thursday the cabinet amended the Atomic Energy Act to allow this. The policy shift represents a victory for the pro-business Free Democrats and for reactor operators who argued that the original idea of putting at least two reactors — E.On's Isar-2 and EnBW's Neckarwestheim-2 — on "cold reserve" during the same period next year didn't provide enough certainty. The decision was also welcomed by RWE whose Emsland reactor in the northwest will now be allowed further operation as well. Finance Minister Christian Lindner, who had pushed for the unit's continued operation, called the decision on Emsland, to which the Greens finally agreed, "a clear signal" both to Germany and to Europe "that we really do everything in our power to eliminate shortages in the electricity market." But after Apr. 15, "it's over," said Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection Robert Habeck in an official statement Oct. 19, referring to the legally mandated phaseout. Next winter "we will be able to import significantly more gas" and "the power grids will be strengthened."

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