France, which depends on nuclear reactors for 70 percent of its electric power, is shutting down two reactors after problems were found near welds on some pipes in its safety system, according to Reuters. The French power company EDF said this would mean a cutback in power production of about 1 terawatt-hour by the end of the year. The cutback will aggravate the power crisis in Europe, where natural gas prices have skyrocketed in the last few months.
Germany has decided to shut down all of its nuclear power reactors, although it still trades some power with France, and thus relies to some extent on nuclear reactors in France. The lack of German nuclear power will increase Germany’s reliance on Russian natural gas, which is a major diplomatic concern as a result of Russia’s military threats against Ukraine.