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ENERGY

More Swedes favour nuclear phase out: poll

Some 36 percent of Swedes now support a phasing out of nuclear power, up from 15 percent in 2008 and having risen sharply after the disaster in Japan, a poll showed Tuesday.

More Swedes favour nuclear phase out: poll

The Synovate poll, published in the leading Dagens Nyheter (DN) daily, also showed that only 21 percent of Swedes are now in favour of further developing

the country’s nuclear power capacity, down from 47 percent in 2008.

The percentage of Swedes who want the country’s nuclear capacity to stay the same currently stands at 36 percent, according to the poll, up slightly from 33 percent three years ago.

Pollster Karin Nelson explained that Swedish public opinion towards nuclear energy had stayed relatively stable throughout the years, but shifted after the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant.

“We didn’t ask any questions related to Japan, but the shift (in opinion) is linked to the events there,” she told DN.

Sweden has 10 nuclear reactors at three plants and the country’s parliament passed a landmark bill last June allowing the reactors to be replaced at the end of their life spans instead of simply ending nuclear power when they expire.

The centre-right government announced earlier this month it was expanding its nuclear regulator’s mandate to include reviewing the safety of the reactors, in the aftermath of the accident at Fukushima.

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ENERGY

German households to receive relief for gas costs ‘starting in January’

To help German residents with skyrocketing energy costs, the government is planning to provide relief starting in January, according to draft legislation.

German households to receive relief for gas costs 'starting in January'

Through the gas price cap, the so-called Gaspreisbremse, both German residents and companies will receive retrospective relief for their gas costs starting in January 2023, according to the draft. 

Previously the relief payments were set to stretch between March 2023 and spring 2024, with 25,000 larger businesses, as well as almost 2,000 hospitals and schools to receive the help starting in January. 

READ ALSO: How much could households save under Germany’s new price cap?

The German government is reacting to the sharp rise in energy prices with energy price brakes worth billions and wants to soften the blow on both private households and companies. 

Germany will also be divvying out a one-off energy relief payment in December.

READ ALSO: When will people in Germany get their December gas bill payment?

How much will households and businesses receive?

Under the gas price cap, households and small and medium-sized enterprises are to receive a guaranteed gas gross price of 12 cents per kilowatt hour for 80 percent of their current consumption. For the remaining 20 percent of consumption, the contract price is set to apply.

For district heating, the guaranteed gross price is to be capped at 9.5 cents. 

Starting in January, a gas price brake is also planned for industry. These large consumers are to receive a guaranteed price of 7 cents per kilowatt hour net for 70 percent of their previous consumption volume.

The largest part of the energy price brake is to be financed by a “defence umbrella”, or special reserve, totalling up to €200 billion. The government is still taking on new debt in order to finance the energy caps. 

Russia’s war against Ukraine has increasingly aggravated the situation on the energy markets in Germany and Europe in the course of 2022, the draft states. 

In particular, the recent large price increases for natural gas and heat represent a “considerable, in some cases existence-threatening burden for residents and companies in Germany,” it continued. “They are an enormous socio-political and economic challenge.”

Vocabulary

relief – (die) Entlastung

Natural gas – (das) Erdgas

Consumption – (der) Verbrauch

cushion/soften a blow – abfedern

We’re aiming to help our readers improve their German by translating vocabulary from some of our news stories. Did you find this article useful? Let us know.

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