Last week, the Czech government proposed a bill, which is now to be reviewed in Parliament. The renewables community is speaking of a step in the right direction, but the battle is still uphill, as a sociologist explained at a conference our Craig Morris attended.
In many countries, solar energy is enjoying great success – photovoltaic modules are increasingly affordable and available to those interested in producing their own electricity. In the Czech Republic, however, those investing in and building solar power stations must constantly resist efforts by the government to destabilise the business environment, as Martin Sedlák explains.
Politicians from Central and Eastern Europe use wrong assumptions to justify new nuclear power in their region. They base their pro nuclear stance on an expected significant increase in domestic power demand and increasing wholesale prices. Jan Ondrich reports.
Media conglomerate Axel Springer AG is known in Germany for its populist and archconservative tone. What most don’t know is the degree to which it also owns publications across Central Europe – in which it spreads deep-seated skepticism of Germany’s energy transition, remarks Paul Hockenos.
Germany’s Energiewende has also impacted Poland and the Czech Republic, but these effects are rarely discussed or well-understood by German lawmakers. EU-wide energy policies are needed in order to ensure that Germany’s transition to renewables is permanent, sustainable, and fair to its neighbors.
When Germany shut down nearly half of its nuclear capacity in the week after Fukushima, critics charged that the country would only be importing more nuclear power from its neighbors as a result. Craig Morris says it is a physical impossibility.
Martin Bursik is deputy leader of the Greens and chairperson of the Chamber of Renewable Energy Resources in Prague. Paul Hockenos talked with him about the renewables, the problem that Germany’s electricity flows swamping the Czech grid and the missing public debate about energy-related topics in the Czech Republic.
Paul Hockenos recently attended a conference on the European perspective of the German Energiewende organised by the Heinrich Böll Foundation in Berlin. His report shows that distrust remains a common sentiment of German neighbors and that better coordination and communication is needed.
In a recent article about the German energy transition, a researcher in the US looks at the challenges Germany faces. But Craig Morris thinks the report says more about Americans than about Germany.
Is Germany not simply switching off its own nuclear plants in order to import nuclear power from its neighbors? It turns out that nuclear plants in neighboring countries have always run at full capacity and simply cannot be ramped up any further to sell more to Germany. Craig Morris discusses the recent findings of a report by the German Institute for Applied Ecology (Oeko-Institute).