CNIC Statement: Germany achieves nuclear power phase-out! A turning point in history

15 April 2023

On 15 April 2023, the Federal Republic of Germany finally achieved nuclear phase-out. This event marks the beginning of the end of the global nuclear age. It also gives courage to people around the world who aspire to a nuclear free future.

Germany used to have 37 commercial nuclear power plants in operation, but in 1998 it reached an agreement with the power industry to phase out nuclear power and enacted a law to do so. Following this, there was some discussion about extending the operation of these plants, but the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident brought a resounding end to these discussions. Gas supplies were cut off due to opposition to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but the government did not change its line on shutting down nuclear power plants.
This was possible because Germany has become a world leader in the field of renewable energy. Even in the midst of the energy crisis, the fact that Germany did not simply return to nuclear power was a political choice that was made with an eye on future global trends.

On the other hand, Japan used to boast excellent technology in the field of renewable energy, but in the shadow of the nuclear industry, this has withered away.

Twelve years after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, the Japanese Government’s policy of returning to nuclear power under its so-called “Green Transformation” (GX) can only be seen as a political decision to protect the interests of the nuclear industry over the lives and safety of citizens. However, the revision of the Atomic Energy Basic Act, the Nuclear Reactor Regulation Act and the Electric Utility Industry Act, which are at present being debated in the Diet, can be seen as the desperate resistance of the sinking nuclear industry. Every part of Japan’s nuclear policy is built on the premise that nuclear power will continue, and if one part of it falls apart, the whole thing will collapse.

There is no way that Japan will be able to reinstate nuclear power when 70% of public opinion favors nuclear phase-out.

Japan should learn from Germany’s strategic development with an eye on global trends and aim for a society based on 100% renewable energy.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

You may also like...