Georges-Louis Bouchez spoke about the nuclear phase-out in the newspaper Het Nieuwsblad. For the president of the MR, “it is impossible to close nuclear power plants in 2025”. He returned in particular to the negative decision of the Flemish Minister Zuhal Demir for the new gas power station of Vilvorde. “I don’t have the ambition to get involved in Flemish issues,” he warns. “But this permit for the Vilvoorde gas plant is not a purely Flemish issue, but a national one. I have been saying for over a year that there will be problems if you want to open new gas plants to replace nuclear plants. It is absurd to replace two gigawatts of nuclear power plants – which have very low CO₂ emissions – by new plants that emit millions of tonnes of CO₂. If Zuhal Demir says that too, then am I to say that she is wrong because she is from the N-VA and she is part of the federal opposition? “
For the president of the francophone liberals, “there are not ten thousand solutions”. “The coalition agreement states that there must be a green, affordable and secure supply solution. It’s crazy that I have to explain to the Greens that CO₂ is bad for the climate. To this day, I have still not heard a response from Energy Minister Tinne Van der Straeten (Groen), ”Georges-Louis Bouchez is surprised.
Even if Engie believes that it is too late to extend nuclear power plants, the debate is, according to him, far from over. “It will not be a French multinational that will decide on our behalf to phase out nuclear power. There are other nuclear power plant operators around the world. The president of the MR quotes EDF, with whom it would still be possible to reach an agreement. “Technically, we are always perfectly on time. For the administrative procedure that accompanies it, not anymore. But it is enough to modify the law to adapt the timetable of the procedure. This is what the Michel government did in 2014, ”he explains to our colleagues from Nieuwsblad.