Nuclear power in Germany: The reasons behind Chancellor Merkel's U-turnhttp://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-13595171France Criticizes German Nuclear Retreathttp://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-05-30/areva-s-lauvergeon-says-germany-will-import-nuclear-power.htmlGerman nuclear energy history: a timelinehttp://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,15117199,00.htmlNuclear Power Global Status [pdf]http://www.iaea.org/Publications/Magazines/Bulletin/Bull492/49204734548.htmlHowStuffWorks: "How Nuclear Power Works"http://www.howstuffworks.com/nuclear-power.htmThere has been some concern throughout the world community regarding nuclear power plant safety since the disaster in Japan back in March 2011. Despite this general cautiousness, many members of the scientific community were surprised by an announcement from Germany's environment minister this past Sunday. After much consideration, Norbert Roettgen announced that Germany will close all of its nuclear power plants by 2022. Currently, Germany has seventeen nuclear reactors, eight of which are off the electricity grid as of this writing. The agreement was reached after an intense set of negotiations between Chancellor Angela Merkel and the leaders of the three major government parties in Germany. The debate about whether to shutter all of Germany's nuclear plants has been a divisive policy issue in the country since the 1970s, and it is one that remains controversial among other members of the European Union. Germany has also elected to keep the equivalent of two power stations on stand-by after 2022, but it remains to be seen how this will work in practice. The first link will take visitors to a news article on the recent decision from this Tuesday's Sydney Morning Herald. The second link will take users to an investigative piece by Stephen Evans of the BBC's Berlin office on the reasons that Chancellor Merkel changed her mind about nuclear power. The third link whisks interested parties to an article from Bloomberg exploring France's critical reaction to Germany's recent decision to phase out its nuclear plants. Moving on, the fourth link leads to a helpful timeline of German nuclear power events from Deutsche Welle. The fifth link leads to a report on the prospects for nuclear power generation around the world, authored by Alan McDonald of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Finally, the last link leads to a very helpful overview of how nuclear power works, courtesy of the dedicated team at the HowStuffWorks website.


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