Popular Initiative “For an orderly withdrawal from the nuclear energy programme (Nuclear Withdrawal Initiative)”
Switzerland has five nuclear power stations. They produce around 40 per cent of Switzerland’s electricity. All these nuclear power stations have open-ended operating licences. They can therefore continue to operate for as long as they are safe. In its 2050 Energy Strategy, the Federal Council proposed a gradual withdrawal from the nuclear energy programme: this strategy envisages that the existing nuclear power stations, once decommissioned, will not be replaced by new ones, and that no additional nuclear power stations will be built.
What is the aim of the initiative?
The initiative also aims to prohibit the construction of new nuclear power stations. It further demands that a limit be placed on the operational lives of the existing nuclear power stations: if the initiative is approved, then the nuclear power stations Mühleberg and Beznau 1 and 2 will have to be closed in 2017, Gösgen in 2024 and Leibstadt in 2029. The initiative also demands that the federal government direct its energy policy towards less consumption, more energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.
The view taken by the Federal Council and Parliament
The Federal Council and Parliament reject the initiative, because it would lead to the premature closure of Switzerland’s nuclear power stations. The reduction in electricity output could not be com[More...]