German nuclear firms ‘can claim compensation over shutdown’

December 6, 2016 1:09 pm Published by

German nuclear firms ‘can claim compensation over shutdown’

  • 6 December 2016
  • From the section Europe

RWE power plant in GermanyImage copyright
AFP

Image caption

The shutdown was ordered after the 2011 Fukushima disaster

German energy suppliers can claim compensation over the country’s phasing out of nuclear power by 2022, a court has ruled.

Judges did not agree with power plant operators that the shutdown, ordered after the 2011 Fukushima disaster, was an “expropriation” of their assets.

But they ruled the government should agree a deal to compensate the firms.

The phasing out of nuclear power is a flagship policy of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government.

“It was permissible for lawmakers to take the accident in Fukushima as a prompt to speed up exiting nuclear energy to protect the health of people and the environment,” senior judge Ferdinand Kirchhof told the court in Karlsruhe.

Although the decision itself was legal, the court found, the firms had a right to “appropriate” compensation from the government.

The judges did not specify the amount of compensation, but German media reports said the plaintiffs – Eon, RWE and Vattenfall – had demanded some 20bn euros ($21bn; £16.85m) in damages.

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This post was written by FSB News