Germany trades Nuclear for Coal, renewable energy is not a viable alternative

Salon has an article on Germany's increase in Coal power production from 43% to 52% with the retirement of Nuclear Power.

Germany’s clean energy plan backfired

The nation's move away from nuclear power drove it right back to coal

Environmental groups like Greenpeace can make all the noise they want, but the state of renewable energy and its costs are not there yet.

Said a campaigner for Greenpeace, “The Merkel government doesn’t do enough to protect the climate anymore.”

Besides Germany.  Spain tried to push Renewable Energy and met an unsustainable cost with sustainable energy.

Mr Miralda is the victim of a bungled, overambitious renewables programme. Governments everywhere want to turn green and create environmentally friendly jobs. But as Spain shows, good intentions are not enough. If the policies are wrong, the benefits are wasted, the jobs disappear, the costs remain—and business investors bear the brunt.


But costs exploded, too. Subsidies to solar energy rose from €190m in 2007 to €3.5 billion in 2012 (an 18-fold increase). Total subsidies to all renewables reached €8.1 billion in 2012, see chart. Since the government was unwilling to pass the full costs on to consumers, the cumulative tariff deficit (the cost of the system minus revenues from consumers) reached €26 billion, having risen by about €5 billion a year.

Expectations are high for renewable energy, and there are plenty of politicians who pushed for renewable energy projects and subsidies.  But, given Germany and Spain's results it looks like wind and solar renewable didn't work this time around.

If you are anti-nuclear, then you may cheer France's EDF withdrawing from Nuclear projects in the US.  But the withdrawal is driven by cheap US natural gas not renewables.

PARIS—French power group Electricité de France SA EDF.FR +7.39% said Tuesday it has signed a deal with U.S. partner Exelon Corp., EXC -0.73% marking the start of the French firm's gradual withdrawal from its multibillion-dollar foray into U.S. nuclear power and illustrating the shale-gas boom's continued wide impact on energy companies' strategies.

Cheap, plentiful U.S. natural gas extracted from shale rock formations is undercutting nuclear power as a form of energy for generating electricity. As a result, building and operating new nuclear power plants now looks even riskier and less attractive, damping enthusiasm for a resurgence in the sector and prompting EDF—the world's largest nuclear power operator—to prepare a strategy to exit its U.S. operations.