German Nuclear, Gas & Coal Plants Can’t Compete, May Shut Down

German conventional power plants are being shut down because they can no longer compete against renewables. The price for electricity vs. the cost to run these old sources of power is in the negative, causing the private utilities to operate at a loss. Some have already filed with the government to shut down, others are expected to be in the works. This includes some of the nuclear reactors still online.

The concern is that too many power plant shutdowns could lead to shortages if Germany is unable to balance the power load during low generation times. The US has seen somewhat of a similar problem as wind and natural gas have made nuclear unprofitable.

Germany can keep a certain amount of conventional power in operation by law to assure the power grid remains stable. This creates a new mid term challenge as they work to develop storage technology or renewable grid stabilization plants such as biomass.

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