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German parliament dumps nuclear energy; shutdown in 2022 news
01 July 2011

Berlin: Voting overwhelmingly in favour of renewable energy, German lawmakers have approved plans to close the country's nuclear plants by 2022. The lower house of parliament voted 513-79 for the shutdown plan drawn up by chancellor Angela Merkel's government after Japan's post-earthquake nuclear disaster.

Eight lawmakers abstained even as most of the opposition voted in favour.

Lawmakers put the seal of approval on the permanent shutdown of eight old reactors, which have been off the grid since March. The country's remaining nine reactors will shut down in stages by the end of 2022.

Till 2011, nuclear energy accounted for almost a quarter of Germany's power supply.

In its ambitious plan for deriving energy from alternative sources, Germany wants to double the share of energy stemming from water, wind, sun or biogas to at least 35 per cent by 2020.

"Some people abroad ask: will Germany manage this? Can it be done? It is the first time that a major industrial country has declared itself ready to carry through this technological and economic revolution," environment minister Norbert Roettgen told lawmakers.

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German parliament dumps nuclear energy; shutdown in 2022