By D. Elliott
The Fukushima nuclear catastrophe in March 2011 led Japan, and plenty of different international locations, to alter their strength guidelines. David Elliott experiences the catastrophe and its worldwide implications, asking no matter if, regardless of persevered backing through a few governments, the transforming into competition to nuclear energy capability the top of the worldwide nuclear renaissance.
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Additional resources for Fukushima: Impacts and Implications
During the election campaign, Hollande said he would order the closure of Fessenheim, the oldest French plant, before the end of his term in office. The Greens had wanted a 100 closure of all plants by 2025, along German lines, and although they were evidently willing to compromise in the electoral pact, given the new political alignments in France there is likely to be continued pressure for a rapid phase-out. A full phase-out would, of course, be a major undertaking and would take time. Nevertheless, a 2006 Institute for Energy and Environmental Research scenario claimed that it would be possible to eliminate nuclear in France entirely by 2040, although the use of gas would expand initially (IEER, 2006).
In parallel, Germany embarked on a major expansion of renewable energy, becoming a world leader in wind and solar power. Wind generation capacity expanded from less than 3 GW in 1998 to more than 27 GW in 2010. During the same period more than 17 GW of solar PV capacity was installed (BMU, 2011a). 1007/978-1-137-27433-5 Reactions in Continental Europe 33 by an innovative feed-in tariff support system. Around 370,000 jobs have been created in the renewable energy industry, with more expected. With the rise of centre-right politics, and the Greens out of the coalition, Angela Merkel’s government sought to soften and delay the nuclear phaseout and also started cutting back on the feed-in tariff, although there was never any suggestion of a nuclear new-build programme.
However, after Fukushima, with public disquiet growing, the government announced a one-year moratorium on its proposed new nuclear programme. Some anti-nuclear groups saw this as a way to deflect opposition in the national referendum, which in any case was quite constrained: it had force only if more than 50 of the electorate participated. There were even doubts as to whether the referendum would happen. Moreover, Italy’s Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, had said that one year would not be long enough to reassure Italians that nuclear was safe.