When Germany committed itself five years ago to phasing out nuclear power by 2022, there was one big gap in its plans — what to do with the waste that can remain toxic for hundreds of thousands of years. That issue remains unresolved even after a government-appointed nuclear commission came up with ideas on how to ensure funding for shutting down all of the country’s atomic reactors. According to a draft proposal, utilities E.ON, RWE, EnBW and Vattenfall [VATN.UL] could be saddled with up to 56 billion euros ($61.6 billion) in costs to cover their share of the cost of the nuclear exit. But the final bill could climb even higher and the extra cost may have to be met by German taxpayers. The main uncertainty centres on the difficulty of finding a permanent storage site to house highly radioactive material. Local opposition has ruled out turning an interim waste storage site in salt formations in the small village of Gorleben in northwest Germany into a final site, with the location having ultimately been excluded by law.
Reuters 23rd Feb 2016 read more »