Greenpeace urges G8 to take a safe bet on renewable energy instead of gambling with nuclear

Press release - 25 May, 2011
Deauville, France, 25 May 2011 -- Greenpeace urged heads of state attending this week’s G8 summit to choose public health over private profit by backing a secure future powered by renewable energy. The international environmental organisation is also calling for an end to the nuclear age and for subsidies and liability caps that benefit nuclear and fossil fuel industries when business is good, but put the burden on taxpayers when things go bad.

“The ongoing Fukushima crisis has reminded us of the devastating legacy for public health and the environment caused by nuclear disasters”, said Kumi Naidoo, Executive Director of Greenpeace International, at the G8. “Fukushima tells us that when there is profit to be made, private finance will take a gamble and happily pocket subsidies, but in the event of a nuclear meltdown ordinary people pay both the health and financial costs”.

Greenpeace called on leaders to reassess their dangerous nuclear energy policies in light of the new IPCC report on renewable energy [1]. The landmark report demonstrates the potential of renewable energy to deliver a safe cost-competitive clean energy future without dirty and dangerous fossil fuels or nuclear power [2]. It concludes that the only barrier is politics.

“The other G8 leaders need to take inspiration from decisions made by Germany’s Angela Merkel and Japan’s Naoto Kan to steer away from nuclear power towards a clean energy revolution”, continued Naidoo. “A world powered by renewable energy is within our grasp - it is possible to meet the majority of the world’s energy needs with just a fraction of the available renewable energy. Leaders must clear the policy blocks slowing this transition, to ensure a safe, stable and secure future for the global economy and the environment”.

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For interviews with Dr Kumi Naidoo, Executive Director, Greenpeace International, contact Caroline Chisholm on +31 646 16 2018

Patricia J Lerner, Senior Political Advisor, Greenpeace International Tel +31 6 46162027

Karine Gavand, Climate and Energy Campaigner, Greenpeace France Tel +33 6 77046190

Greenpeace International Press Desk Hotline +31 (0) 20718 2470


1. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Special Report on Renewable Energy, May 2011,

2. Greenpeace’s Energy [R]evolution was chosen as one of the lead scenarios of the report. It offers a sustainable path to quit dirty, dangerous fuels by transitioning to renewable energy and energy efficiency.