Speaking at today`s energy and climate policy conference hosted by the Federal Ministry for the Environment in Berlin, the President of the German Atomic Forum, Dr. Walter Hohlefelder, has called for a new, open and impartial debate concerning nuclear energy. "All options for the energy supply of future generations have to be kept open and developed," said Dr. Hohlefelder. One of these viable options was also nuclear power - if operated in a technically safe manner and at the highest level of safety culture, as was the case in Germany.
Dr. Hohlefelder rejected any politically-motivated calls for wanting to assess the safety status of a nuclear power plant by its age. To keep up the high level of safety in Germany, the plants were permanently improved from a safety-related point of view and upgraded in line with the state of the art. "Therefore it can only be the actual safety-related condition of a nuclear power plant that can be the determining factor for its safety-related assessment. It is an undisputed fact that the German nuclear power plants are among the safest in the world," Dr. Hohlefelder explained.
The Agreement between the Federal Government and the power utilities of 11 June 2001 still applied as before, Dr. Hohlefelder continued. However, no facts should be established as long as CDU/CSU and SPD held different views on the issue of the future use of nuclear power. "Until the overall energy-political concept for our energy supply of tomorrow, which the government has promised to come up with by 2007, is available, we must not bar any of our options," Dr. Hohlefelder declared.