Belgium postpones its plans to exit from nuclear energy in 2025 by a decade

The country had ambitious plans to scrub nuclear by 2025.
Loukia Papadopoulos
Tihange Nuclear Power Station in Huy, Belgium.jotily/iStock

Earlier this month, techno king Elon Musk tweeted that he thinks that Europe should restart its dormant nuclear power stations to deal with the energy crisis resulting from the Ukraine war.

One country at least is listening. 

Belgium announced on Friday that it would delay its plans to scrub nuclear by one more decade, according to Tech Explore.

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Extending the life of two nuclear reactors

"The federal government has decided to take the necessary steps to extend the life of two nuclear reactors by ten years," Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said in a statement.

"This extension will strengthen our country's independence from fossil fuels in a turbulent geopolitical environment," he added.

Nuclear has been seeing a revival in popularity with Bill Gates' company Terra Power attempting new types of nuclear reactors and U.S. President Biden's recent infrastructure law setting aside $6 billion to preserve nuclear power reactors in the U.S.

In addition, the U.S. military is also considering a mobile nuclear power station to address their energy needs overseas, while NASA wants to power missions on the Moon using nuclear energy. 

An existing infrastructure 

It has been suggested that, in the face of threats to energy security brought on by the Ukrainian war, countries in Europe would be better off sticking longer with their existing infrastructure than trying to rapidly switch to renewables that still need to be scaled up immensely to address current energy demands. 

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Belgium currently, has at its service two nuclear power plants with a total of seven reactors. On Friday, the government agreed to extend the operations of the Doel 4 reactor near the port city of Antwerp and the Tihange 3 reactor near Liege until 2035.

De Croo stated that the delay would give the country much-needed security. "For too long our country has lacked vision," De Croo told a news conference. "This has caused a lot of uncertainty. The plan we have on the table today responds to that lack of vision."

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