New starting point for an energy plan for Switzerland

With the economic recovery also increases the consumption of electricity in Switzerland. The Federal Office of Energy has developed energy for new perspectives to meet the supply gap.

The Swiss energy policy in the balancing act between the demands of climate change and the economy with the supply of safe and affordable energy.

For over thirty years, the Swiss authorities undertake efforts to maintain the country's energy consumption orderly tracks.

Decades of economic boom, consumption control without exaggerated curves. It was 1973, the Commission for an overall concept of the energy used to, the different scenarios to prepare for the clash as the policy options can be used.

The Commission, under the "Energy Pope" Michael Kohn 1978 submitted its final report. Some recommendations were in 1991 by the people and the cantons of Energy approved the article in the Federal added.

This allows the federal government in a given context, energy saving and the use of environment to promote energy sources.
Energy consumption continues to rise

Despite the article of the Constitution, however, energy consumption in Switzerland since 1980, grew steadily, although not as fast as 1950 to 1980, but still striking.

Around 40% more energy than 25 years already passed, the Swiss population in 2005 (a total of 890'000 TJ. Terajoules A = 280,000 kWh). While fuel consumption, thanks to more efficient thermal insulation of buildings between 1980 and 2005, about 45 to 25% of total Endenergiekonsums declined.

This success, however, was nullified by the increase in fuel consumption, now 31, compared with 25% of the total energy pie for the claims.
Figure on energy
Chart energy (swissinfo)
Power hungry

Absolute and relative has increased from 1980 to 2005, electricity consumption, from 19 to almost 23% of total energy consumption. Electricity is an important factor of production for industry and services, almost 70% (including railways) flowing into these areas of the economy.

The hopes, economic growth and energy consumption can be decoupled, have not been met. In fact, demand for electricity in each of the past only in times of recession weakened, then the economic recovery in it.
Blocked nuclear energy debate

Switzerland, sooner or later, especially when faced with a shortage of power could be not only endorsed today. However, prevention of the dispute over the use of nuclear energy in the last twenty years, the formulation of a coherent energy policy.

From 1990 to 2000 in the written Constitution moratorium on building new nuclear power plants passed without any concrete and viable proposals, such as the power of central Switzerland and the long term can be presented.
New start

Now, the Federal Office of Energy (FOE) in the spring of its four scenarios for the regional government developed energy outlook presented 2035/2050.

In this context that the era of cheap oil is also in Switzerland is more, the national electricity production is already at its capacity limits that from 2020, the PNP and M├╝hlenberg Beznau I and II are expected to range from the electricity network and contracts with France to start leaving.

Moreover, limiting the scope of energy policy from the commitment to the global climate damaging emissions of carbon dioxide fixed.

For all those who probably do not need to stagnate: Depending on the scenario SFOE wait until 2035 with an increase in electricity consumption by up to 23%.

Only stage IV (2000-watt society) the promises of big investments in energy efficiency and new technologies, reduced electricity demand by almost 8%. This is by far not enough that the then-closed nuclear power plant to compensate.
Focus on energy efficiency

To come from the 2020 shortage, the Federal Office of Energy, with a three-pronged strategy to meet the highest priority is to improve energy efficiency at all levels.

Second is the goal, and the accelerated development of hydropower. The remaining difference is fossil fuel thermal plants will be stopped, with the additional CO2 emissions from abroad would have to compensate.

With new nuclear plants as the BFE, in a first round is not expected, because this due to the long approval process is expected until the network could go 2030/35.

swissinfo, Ulrich Goetz