|30 YEARS AFTER CHERNOBYL: HIGH TIME FOR A SUSTAINABLE ENERGY TRANSITION IN EUROPE!|
Vienna, 21st April 2016
On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Naturefriends International demands the active implementation of a sustainable energy transition in Europe. Important instruments are the introduction of CO2 taxes and true-cost pricing for nuclear power plants.
Nuclear power plants not profitable without subsidies
In Europe, 93 nuclear power plants are in operation in 18 countries; 11 reactor blocks are currently being built – in many cases with public subsidies. For example, the planned new reactors in Great Britain need a state subsidy of € 95 per MWh, otherwise they would not be profitable. Furthermore, the majority of power plants have not set aside sufficient provisions for the costs after the end of the operating period. These are thus shifted onto future generations.
No true-cost pricing for fossil fuels
At the same time, coal-fired power stations are being increasingly rebuilt, although they aggravate the greenhouse effect through the emission of carbon dioxide. Were CO2 emissions to be subject to taxes, those power stations would not be profitable either. Manfred Pils, president of Naturefriends International, says, “The pivotal element of sustainable energy policies is increasing the costs for carbon dioxide emissions. Only in that case will there be an incentive to avoid fossil fuels – in production, transport, heating and air conditioning.”
Renewable energies as opportunity
A focus on renewable energy sources would not only considerably contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, but in the medium term would also lead to a drop in energy costs and help fight energy poverty. "At the moment, a huge part of energy provision costs cover the production and transport of oil, coal and gas − to a large extent, the money goes to the producing countries where it often supports more or less undemocratic, often corrupt governments and oligarchs. Sun, wind, hydropower and geothermal energy are free energy resources. The costs are predominantely used for power plants, modern technologies and services provided on site" says Manfred Pils.
For a sustainable energy transition, Naturefriends International demands:
NFI is the international umbrella organisation of the Naturefriends movement, uniting over
50 member organisations and approximately 500,000 members. The focus of NFI’s work is on creating and implementing sustainable development of the environment and society. NFI is member of the “Green 10”, a coalition of ten leading environmental NGOs active at the EU level.
President of the Naturefriends International
Naturfreunde Internationale, Public Relations
Tel.: +43 (0)1 89 23 877-13
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