• Germany's news in English

Energy firms want billions for nuke exit

The Local · 13 Jun 2012, 10:18

Published: 13 Jun 2012 10:18 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The country's biggest power utility E.ON wants at least €8.0 billion alone, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) said, without revealing its sources.

In the wake of the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan, Berlin decided to phase out nuclear power, forcing energy suppliers to shut down their profitable large-scale power plants, while it also levied a tax on the reactors' fuel for their remaining lifespan.

Both E.ON and its next biggest rival RWE have already filed complaints with the constitutional court, arguing that the nuclear exit decision has harmed their proprietary rights as they had to shut down reactors early. Both have seen profits fall sharply since the closures.

And according to the FAZ, Swedish energy provider Vattenfall may follow suit.

E.ON said the complaint was not about the pull-out from nuclear energy per se, which is largely supported in Germany, but about the lack of compensation for the companies affected by the energy policy U-turn.

Environment groups have hit back at nuclear power companies asking for compensation, calling them “impassably audacious.”

Story continues below…

“The damage her is not in shutting down the plants, but what they were doing when they were working,” said Jochen Stay, spokesman for the anti-nuclear organisation Ausgestrahlt.

AFP/DPA/The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

12:47 June 13, 2012 by Bigfoot76
The government may as well compensate every person edged out by the latest and greatest things. Local farmers, VHS movie distributers, bellbottom jeans and soon maybe Angela Merkel as well. Fads come and fads go. I mean in the early 90s whoever thought the New Kids On the Block would disappear? Then reappear, then disappear again only to reaapear this time with backstreet boys and then...once again....
15:33 June 13, 2012 by raandy
Originally these companies and their investors built these plants with government help to supply low cost energy to the consumer and nice profits for the company a win win at the time. Now the big Japanese diaster has the government closing out the plants with little to no prior discussions or plans as to how this is going to be accomplished economically for both the consumer and producer. Before this is settled there will be suits from both sides.

Like putting the cart before the horse
09:32 June 14, 2012 by Bilderberg
I say to give these greedy basturds a choice. They can either shut up and leave now, or be thrown into a reactor. No other options.
10:26 June 14, 2012 by mos101392
Just ask for a bailout like everyone else. In the end it will be the average Joe that will pay through taxes. Only the Politicians and Bankers are immune and above the law and profit. Why do you think Greece and Spain were pressured to take bailouts with crazy interest rates. If Germany and Europe were so concerned about keeping the beloved Euro together, they would offer these bailouts with low interest or interest free.

If Greece and Spain are having issues now, do you think it will get better with more loans at even higher rates? The best thing that could happen to all those greedy bankers is for Ireland, Portugal, Spain, and Greece to default on those billions and leave the Euro....they'll do ok, just look at England!
10:34 June 14, 2012 by AlexR
Four easy steps to success:

1. Build a power plant with the help of taxpayers money.

2. If something goes wrong, sue the government for billions, and get more taxpayers money.

3. Increase your prices due to "extraordinary circumstances" and make the taxpayers pay more through their electricity bills.

4. Profit
15:55 June 14, 2012 by catjones
I support the lawsuits. The government's actions appear to be knee-jerk and not thought out. If the power suppliers are not compensated for their losses, there will be no incentive for wind or solar power investments because the government is a fickle (and costly) partner. If the gov decides the wind farms are environmentally adverse or solar panels are not disposed of properly and then banned, somebody has to pay for the loss.

If the gov orders a submarine and then decides to cancel mid-way, the contract will assure penalties.
17:11 June 20, 2012 by hanskarl
Economics 101................
05:21 September 16, 2012 by tercel
The Japanese Fukushima nuclear disaster was caused by a tidal wave much larger than planned for, the earth quake did nothing to the reactors, the backup electrical support was taken out by the tidal wave. How many tidal waves have hit Germany in the past 5,000 years?

Poor disaster reaction performance planning on the part of the Japanese added to the disaster. Poor reaction performance planning on the part of the German government will create a power disaster. So far there have been 5 major nuclear accidents. Chernobyl, because the Russians didn't know what they were doing and had numerous design flaws. The Mayak Nuclear Power Plant in 1957 also in Russia, again the Russians didn't know what they were doing and had numerous design flaws. Nuclear reactor fire in England in 1957, mostly due to operator error. Three Mile Island, which was contained and no one was killed or injured. Fukushima, caused by earth quakes and tidal waves, can man really totally protect himself against the forces of nature? 5 major accidents and how many nuclear reactors are in operation around the world?

If Germany wants to buy it's electricity from French nuclear power plants and it's natural gas to power conventional power plants from Russia, be my guest, I'm just glad I will not have to pay the exorbitant cost of electricity the average German citizen will have to end up paying.
Today's headlines
Eurowings braces as cabin crew union proclaims strike
Photo: DPA

A union representing cabin crew for Lufthansa's budget airline Eurowings announced that strikes could take place at any time over the next two weeks, starting on Monday.

Mysterious German U-boat wreckage found off Scotland
Photo: ScottishPower

First World War U-boat "attacked by sea monster” thought to be found off Scottish coast.

Supermarket Edeka warns of exploding apple juice bottles
Photo: DPA

"Risk of injury" from "Gut und Günstig" sparkling apple juice bottles has forced Germany's largest supermarket to recall the product.

By wheelchair from Syria to Germany: teen's story of hope
Nujeen Mustafa. Photo: HarperCollins-William Collins Publicity/Private

She tackled the gruelling 2,000-kilometre migrant trail in a wheelchair, translating along the way for other refugees using English she learned from a US soap opera. Now this teen is living in Germany and hoping to inspire others with a newly published memoir.

Berlin Zoo to have a pair of pandas by next summer
A recently born panda pair at Vienna Zoo. Photo: DPA

The giant bamboo-eating bears will move into a brand new 5,000 square-metre enclosure in the capital's Zoologischer Garten.

Two new spider species discovered in Munich
Zoropsis spinimana. Photo: rankingranqueen / Wikimedia Commons

It's news every arachnophobe in Munich is no doubt thrilled to hear: two types of spider new to the region have been discovered in the Bavarian capital - and one of them bites!

After woman's body found in barrel, husband may walk free
Franziska S., who went missing 24 years ago. Photo: Hanover police.

A woman disappeared in Hanover 24 years ago, but no one reported her missing. Although her husband has now confessed to her murder, he still may not step foot in jail.

Two injured after army tank falls 50 metres in Alps
A Bundeswehr Puma tank. File photo: DPA

A Bundeswehr (German army) soldier has been severely injured after the tank he was riding in crashed 50 metres down an embankment after going off course in bad weather.

Teen girl stands trial for 'Isis' police stabbing in Hanover
Police guard the courthouse in Celle. Photo: DPA

A teenage girl stands trial from Thursday in Germany for stabbing a police officer, an assault allegedly "ordered" by Isis but which was not claimed by the jihadist group.

Merkel threatens Putin with more sanctions on Berlin visit
Angela Merkel and Vladimir Putin in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Chancellor Angela Merkel created a united front with French President Francois Hollande in Berlin on Thursday to denounce Russia’s “war crimes” in Syria.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd