Dr. Walter Hohlefelder, President of the German Atomic Forum, has today (Tuesday) opened the 2006 Annual Meeting on Nuclear Technology in Aachen. The Annual Meeting on Nuclear Technology, which this year takes place for the 37th time, is one of the biggest specialist conferences of its kind worldwide, with over 1,000 participants from Germany and abroad.
In his opening address, Dr. Hohlefelder called for the German ban on research into the development of new reactors to be lifted. "Holding on to this research ban would be evidence of Germany`s incapacity as a centre of technology and industry," Dr. Hohlefelder pointed out. He went on to say that practically all large industrialised nations were working on the development of advanced reactor concepts with even higher levels of efficiency and safety as well as with greater flexibility of use. One of these reactor concepts belonging to the so-called "Generation IV" is e.g. the High-Temperature Reactor (HTR) that was originally developed in Aachen. Without any involvement in reactor research, Germany would also lose its international influence on future safety standards, the President of the German Atomic Forum added.
Apart from the international expert speakers from Finland, Sweden and China, others addressing current issues of energy supply during today`s plenary session will be the Economics Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia, Christa Thoben, FDP party chairman Dr. Guido Westerwelle, and Jan Zilius, member of the board of the RWE AG power utility. Furthermore, Dr. Patrick Moore, co-founder of Greenpeace, will explain why he thinks that nuclear power is indispensable as a part of preventive climate protection in the face of the dramatic rise in energy demand worldwide.