Vattenfall sues Germany over nuke power move

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Vattenfall sues Germany over nuke power move

Swedish power group Vattenfall said Thursday it was joining bigger rivals E.ON and RWE in filing a complaint with Germany's top court seeking compensation for Berlin's decision to abandon nuclear power.


"We have recently lodged a complaint with the Constitutional Court," a spokeswoman for Germany's third biggest nuclear energy producer told AFP.

The spokeswoman stressed that the complaint was not against the decision to ditch nuclear power per se but against the requirement to shut down reactors early, which they say infringes their proprietary rights.

The move follows similar complaints lodged in April by RWE and in November by E.ON.

All three companies have already seen profits fall sharply.

In the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan, Berlin decided to phase out nuclear power, forcing energy suppliers to shut down their profitable large-scale power plants and also levying a tax on the reactors' fuel for their remaining lifespan.

Vattenfall has previously claimed it stands to lose €700 million ($957 million) it had invested in the nuclear power stations Krümmel and Brunsbüttel after the government originally agreed to extend the life-spans of its nuclear power stations.

Both of those reactors were shut down permanently earlier this year after Angela Merkel’s government performed a dramatic U-turn following the Fukushima disaster.

Germany’s last nuclear power stations are set to be shut down permanently in 2022.

Vattenfall said it was seeking "appropriate compensation" from Germany for expected losses caused by the nuclear reversal.

Germany's biggest power utility E.ON has said it wants at least €8.0 billion.

AFP/The Local

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