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Free Democrats' nuclear battle intensifies

The Local · 31 Mar 2011, 09:04

Published: 31 Mar 2011 09:04 GMT+02:00

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His remarks came as the internal battle over the party’s direction – and particularly the future of FDP chairman Guido Westerwelle – intensified.

Brüderle blasted what he considered hasty talk of a quick shut-down of atomic energy in Germany – putting himself clearly at odds with both Chancellor Angela Merkel as well as members of his own party.

“The energy transition must continue, but it must be manageable and certain,” he told daily Bild.

He said his pro-business Free Democratic Party wanted to move into the era of renewable energy as quickly as possible. “But we must be honest with people: it won’t work without new pathways, and probably also not without cost.”

But Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger supported FDP General Secretary Christian Lindner on the issue. Lindner had previously provoked criticism for suggesting that the eight oldest reactors in Germany to be permanently taken off-line.

Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger told the Mittelbayerische Zeitung: “He is not getting ahead of himself on this issue.”

She also said her party had a credibility problem.

“We can’t shove everything onto the nuclear catastrophe in Fukushima,” she said. “If the FDP is looking for answers ... it has to keep in mind that we were already in a difficult situation before.”

Story continues below…

But the party is also facing simmering internal criticism of its leadership, notably chairman Westerwelle as well as Brüderle. Katja Suding, leader of the party in Hamburg, told the Hamburger Abendblatt the FDP needed an overhaul – and pointedly named general secretary Lindner as a potential leader.

“Christian Lindner certainly has the potential to one day become party chairman,” she said.

DAPD/The Local/djw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

09:58 March 31, 2011 by proclusian
So how is it the case that Frau Merkel has not already thrown Brüderle, "Minister für Verplaudern" as Titanic called him, out of her cabinet? Clearly, is is like the exposed rods of a nuclear reactor: she needs to cool him down or find some way to remove him. He's also being really obstinate on the Frauenquote issue, to which I thought Schröder had a nice compromise worked out (the flexible Frauenquote). Am I alone here in thinking it is time for Herr Brüderle to go?
13:38 March 31, 2011 by freechoice
hallo! why is no one monitoring the nuclear radiation coming from Fukushima to Deutschland??? It will be intensified during the week or so!
18:03 March 31, 2011 by berfel
Merkel says jump. Brüderle points out that one is about to jump off a cliff to a de-industrialised (jobless) Germany if there are no high-density, reliable energy sources available to run modern industry.


BfS is monitoring. Butthey are very, very, very low. Levels of radiation are a million times lower than from you. Average person produces 2000 to 4000 Bq (mostly from K-40, IIRC). Isotope emssions which could be attributed to Fukushima reported so far are about 0.000500 Bq/m³ of air.


Radioactivity in total diet before and after the Chernobyl reactor accident The situation in the Federal Republic of Germany


Radioactivity in total diet samples (1-day rations of adults) has been determined in the Federal Republic of Germany since 1960. Average intake of cesium-137 was 8.9 Bq per day and per person (Bq/ d.p) in 1964, 0.15 in 1985, 4.2 in 1986, 7.2 in 1987, and 2.0 in 1988. Cesium-134, not measureable in pre-Chernobyl fallout, averaged 2.0 Bq/d.p in 1986, 3.0 in 1987, and 0.6 in 1988. Intake of strontium-90 was in the same range as in the years preceding the Chernobyl accident. It is estimated that the total effective equivalent dose for adults due to ingestion of Chernobyl-released radionuclides, including iodine-131, will be 0.14±0.08 mSv.
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