In late March, the Green Vice-Chancellor of Germany pleaded with the German people to save energy wherever they could: “Every kilowatt-hour of energy saved helps”, a plea he repeated in June, with a European energy crunch looming.
Apparently Berlin counts on kilowatt-hours, but does not care about terawatt-hours. In 2021 six nuclear power plants produced over 65TW/h, providing no less than 13% of German electricity generated. Three of these plants were closed in early 2022, with the remaining three being phased out in December. Though there have been calls by other European states and by German industry to keep them running, so far the government is not willing to reconsider its original plans.
The coalition government of Social Democrats, Greens and Liberals looks out of touch with a voter base that has recently shifted in a dramatically pro-nuclear direction. Several polls have shown that at least 60% of Germans want to postpone the phase-out of nuclear, including a surprising 61% majority among supporters of the Greens.