In the dispute over the planned reserve operation of the Isar 2 nuclear power plant, Bavaria's Economics Minister Habeck is under pressure. A necessary valve replacement requires a clear decision. The Federal Environment Minister accuses the CSU of a delayed information policy.
In Bavaria's opinion, the replacement of a worn-out pressure valve, which is necessary for the backup operation of the nuclear reactor Isar 2, increases the pressure on the federal government to make a decision. Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck must say "now finally hop or great" about the extension of the term, said Bavaria's Minister of Economics and Deputy Prime Minister Hubert Aiwanger from the Free Voters in Munich. The operator, politics and the economy should know how things will continue immediately and from January.
"In the event of an - urgently needed - service life extension, maintenance must be carried out in the next few weeks, such as replacing the valve or reassembling the fuel rods, in order to then be able to produce for several months without interruption in the new year," emphasized Aiwanger. However, this maintenance does not have to be carried out when New Year's Eve is over. "Anyone who is seriously concerned with the technical issues must now finally answer this call for help from the operator after a decision has been made."
The Environment Minister responsible for nuclear supervision in Bavaria, Thorsten Faithr, does not interpret the repair decision as a question of the safety of the reactor built in Essenbach near Landshut in 1988, but only as a political course setting: "Now a federal decision is finally needed and no further tactics," said he in Munich. It turns out that the idea of a cold reserve for the Isar 2 and Neckar Westheim power plants in Baden-Württemberg from January to April is not a good solution. "A nuclear power plant is not an emergency power generator. Now the hurdles inherent in this idea are becoming apparent."
On Monday, the Federal Ministry for the Environment published a statement that the Eon subsidiary Preussen Elektra had informed the Federal Ministry last week "about an internal valve leak" in the nuclear power plant. This does not affect the safety of the facility. The power plant can also continue to run until the end of operations, which is actually planned, on December 31, it said. However, for reserve operation beyond this date, as the federal government envisages in the event of a power supply emergency, a repair would be necessary as early as October, Preussen Elektra announced.
Federal Environment Minister Steffi Lemke criticized not having received any earlier information from Bavaria. In particular, the Greens politician targeted the Union and the Bavarian Minister of State, Glauber. The Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder and CDU leader Friedrich Merz both looked at the reactor and spoke to the operator. "I'm wondering whether they weren't informed about the leak or whether they simply didn't mention the problem at their press conference on August 4 in front of the reactor," said Lemke. "The question also arises as to why Minister Glauber, after all the head of the Bavarian nuclear supervisory authority, did not draw attention to the problem. That is simply dubious," she continued.
"We are in the process of evaluating the changed situation and drawing conclusions," explained Lemke. In addition to the necessary repairs in October, an additional change in the law is required for emergency reserve operation from January, emphasized the minister. Therefore, discussions with the operator are now pending. "It is true that the operator must now decide very promptly whether to carry out these repairs," said Lemke.
The leak that has occurred makes it clear "that questions of security requirements are being systematically ignored in the political debate about extending the term of the CDU and CSU," criticized the minister. "For me, the new twist is also a confirmation that an extension of the term by three to four years is not responsible and also not simply possible," affirmed the Green politician.