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Vladimir Putin: German nuclear phase out «does not make any sense»

A share of nuclear power plants in the energy mix of Russia was 20.28% in 2020

Vladimir Putin: German nuclear phase out «does not make any sense»

Source: RIA Novosti

Russia has set a target of 2060 to reach net-zero carbon dioxide emissions, President Vladimir Putin told Russian Energy Week 2021, World Nuclear news anaylsed.
Counting nuclear exports as contributing towards global decarbonisation and saying Germany's phase out «does not make any sense», he said that he thinks energy system decisions should be made by experts.

However, Putin still expects fossil fuels to play a major role in the global economy until as late as 2045:
According to expert estimates, in the next 25 years, the share of hydrocarbons in the global energy balance may decline from the current 80-85% to 60-65%
Importantly, the role of oil & coal will go down, whereas the role of natural gas as the cleanest 'transitional' fuel will go up

Russia plans to capitalise on this by upping its production of LNG in a play he said would «strengthen our positions in this dynamic market and occupy about 20% of it owing to low production costs and competitive logistics.»

In a segment following his formal speech, Putin took questions from a moderator, CNBC journalist Hadley Gamble.
She asked him, «Do you believe it is a mistake for governments, for example, for Germany, for other countries, to move away from nuclear energy
Putin responded:
  • Whether it is a mistake or not, is up to the people of Germany to decide
  • If you want to know my opinion on this matter, whether this is a mistake, in my opinion, it does not make any sense, because nuclear power accounts for over 80% of the energy balance in France, Germany's neighbour, (Nuclear energy actually makes up about 70% of French electricity)
  • Does it make any sense to close down nuclear generation in one place while on the other side of the fence, on the neighbouring territory, nuclear is flourishing?
Putin continued:
  • I can understand that in a country as big as Russia, with its immense territory - the biggest country in the world - you could say that we will develop nuclear in one part of the country, but there are reasons not to do so in other parts
  • However, in Europe with its density where everything is crammed together, does this make any sense?
  • Either they have to agree on this policy on a pan-European level, or it will not make any sense
He said, quickly referring to Rosatom head A.Likhachev for figures:
  • That said, nuclear power accounts for a substantial portion of Germany’s energy mix
  • They used to have over 30%, but now they have only 11% [nuclear in their electricity mix]
  • This is a huge loss in power generating capacity, of course, they must replace this resource with something
  • But what? Wind turbines? That is tricky. It is how you get price hikes
  • You see, everything must be done softly, calmly, in a balanced and calibrated manner
  • In addition, professionals must be the ones to take these decisions, not someone else
In terms of clean energy, Putin noted Russia's experience in nuclear, including fast reactors, small reactors and its goal to close the fuel cycle:
  • Building on the achievements in this area, we will continue to export nuclear technology and thereby contribute to decarbonising the global energy sector