Engie-Electrabel relaunched the debate on this theme by announcing that it was renouncing its investments in nuclear power in view of the government agreement, which confirms the phase-out of nuclear power in 2025, and various political declarations to this effect. The announcement was made clear: the company is working on two scenarios, one based on full exit in 2025, the other on maintaining part of the capacity beyond this deadline. The government agreement provides for an assessment in November 2021 of the practical and financial feasibility of the exit and the possibility, if necessary, of extending two reactors.
Asked on Saturday in “De Tijd”, the CEO of Elia, manager of the electricity transmission network, Chris Peeters, brushed aside the idea of a disruption in the country’s electricity supply in the event of a shutdown. nuclear.
“The light is not going to go out. We will do everything to avoid it. We often asked to make choices because the debate (on phasing out nuclear power) did not stop. The Minister (of Energy) now says that the nuclear phase-out will be implemented. We may or may not appreciate this political choice, but now there is the clarity that the sector was looking for. There is also realism in linking it to monitoring of supply and prices, ”he declared.
“I tend to listen to him,” said the Prime Minister.
The Flemish nationalists’ proposal also surprises Mr. De Croo: it was in 2015 that the exit from nuclear power in 2025 was confirmed … when the N-VA was in the government.
Basically, the Prime Minister wanted to place himself in a perspective longer than the 2025 deadline. New generation gas-fired power stations will partially replace nuclear production. However, within 10 years, these units could also run on hydrogen.
“The shift towards an economy based on hydrogen is the future, and Belgium must be at the cutting edge of technology. Belgium is not going to save the world on its own, but Belgian technology can do it, and I want us to be at the cutting edge of technology, ”he said.