Thursday, November 19, 2015

Victoria's Green Matters 19th November 2015

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

A new nuclear power station is being built at Hinkley Point in Somerset; this is the first nuclear plant to be built in Europe since the disaster of the Fukushima reactor melt down in Japan in 2011. This suggests that the rest of Europe, and certainly Germany, do not believe that nuclear energy is the most reliable form of generation and are opting for renewable sources instead.

Germany has chosen to switch off all nuclear reactors by 2022, partly in response to anti-nuclear protests in the 1980’s, and to use renewables to make up the shortfall. They have called this process the energy transition. Currently, 26% of Germany’s electricity comes from renewables in the form of solar, wind, and biomass but it must be said that 44% is generated by coal. The government wants to increase the renewables’ share to 40%-45% by 2025.

The Hinkley Point nuclear plant is going to cost electricity customers at least £4.4 billion in subsidies while our government has cut subsidies for solar energy on the grounds of cost! The nuclear industry has been promised energy prices at twice the market price for the next 30 years. Crazy or what?

Germany’s choice to go for renewables has helped to create jobs. About 370,000 people work in the renewables industries, about twice as many as in fossil fuels. The town of Bremerhaven has benefitted from the establishment of a wind turbine manufacturer employing 350 people after suffering from the collapse of the fishing and shipbuilding industry.

Victoria Nicholls. Transition Deal.

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