Czech Republic to End Coal Use by 2033, Boost Nuclear Power
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The new Czech government has announced plans to phase out coal in power generation by 2033 while increasing the country’s dependence on nuclear and renewable sources
PRAGUE – The new Czech government aims to phase out coal from power generation by 2033 while increasing the country’s dependence on nuclear and renewable sources, its policy program released on Friday said.
Coal-fired power plants currently generate almost 50% of the total Czech electricity production.
“We will create such conditions for energy transformation and the development of coal regions in order to enable the phasing out of coal by 2033,” said the government headed by conservative Prime Minister Petr Fiala.
The previous government, led by populist billionaire Andrej Babis, had not approved any targets for stopping coal use, but its advisory body recommended 2038, a plan that environmental groups say was not enough ambitious.
Environmental activists said on Friday that 2033 was still an unwarranted late date.
“The Czech government knows all too well that climate science tells us that European countries must phase out coal by 2030,” said Mahi Sideridou, managing director of Europe Beyond Coal. “He has to speed up the plan.
The European Union member plans to become more dependent on nuclear power, which neighboring Germany has decided to phase out by the end of 2022.
Germany and some other EU countries, such as Austria, have opposed a draft proposal from the bloc’s executive board which concludes that nuclear power, as well as natural gas, can, in some conditions, be considered sustainable for investment purposes.
The Ministry of Industry and Commerce said on Friday that it was “a priority” for it to support nuclear power and renewable energy sources.
The Czech Republic relies on six nuclear reactors in two power plants for one third of its electricity. He is finalizing a plan to build another nuclear reactor and working on plans for more.
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