Civil society has used many forms of activism to push for a transition to a greener electrical grid in South Africa. This year, they’ve taken their battle to the courts, winning two significant rulings. Leonie Joubert takes a look at the case to stop a new coal-fired mega-station north of Johannesburg.
It is commonly held that Germany’s nuclear phaseout was a major victory for the Greens. But when the first agreement was signed in 2000, the Greens paid bitterly for the compromise. Today, Germany still lacks a final repository for nuclear waste. Craig Morris investigates.
Even countries with long-standing nuclear aims are adding wind power much faster, as Brazil, China, and India show. Those interested in the fastest way to mitigate climate change can forget nuclear, says Craig Morris.
Various studies on future low-carbon electricity mixes suggest that the least expensive option is one with nuclear along with solar and wind mixed in. But the economists overlook the cost impact of ramping. Craig Morris takes a look.
Since the 1950s, the Euratom Treaty has encouraged large investments into nuclear energy projects and funding for nuclear research. In all this time, the treaty was never revised to suit present-day demands. The trend towards cheaper renewable energy is ignored, while millions of euros that go towards nuclear research are legitimated. Cordula Büsch takes a look at why the Euratom treaty needs to be reformed, if not abolished.
Proponents of 100% renewable energy face harsh criticism, even well-respected scientists like Mark Jacobson. He has been arguing for countries to switch to an all-renewables grid for years, both through academic papers and activism. Today, he rebuts the argument that the US should continue using nuclear power and fossil fuels.
50,000 people from Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands formed a cross-border 90 km-long human chain on Sunday, 25 June to protest against the controversial Tihange nuclear power plant. Micro-cracks were recently discovered in one of the facility’s reactors. Sam Morgan has the details.
When conventional forms of activism don’t reach the ears of a democratically elected government, the courts can provide a platform to hold the state accountable. A High Court ruling against the South African government’s efforts to buy in nuclear power is a case in point, writes Leonie Joubert.
The 2011 Fukushima disaster was a huge turning point for how many countries saw nuclear energy. Years later, many Japanese people have not returned home but may be forced to help pay for the cleanup. Tatsujiro Suzuki looks at the current situation and recommends that the Japanese government take measures to regain public trust.
In the US, a debate on “deep decarbonization” is raging: going nearly zero-carbon in energy supply. Journalist David Roberts says we will need “dispatchable” nuclear. Via Twitter, he told readers that, to refute his argument, people need to move beyond their anti-nuke rant and show that we won’t need “dispatchable nuclear.” Craig Morris has a different take: Roberts needs to define “dispatchable.”