Together Against Nuclear Energy
Nuclear Power? No Thanks!
.ausgestrahlt is an anti-nuclear organization and has been active throughout Germany since 2008. We are convinced that the use of nuclear energy is a grave injustice that harms both people and the environment. We are fighting for a future powered by sustainable and environmentally friendly energy instead of nuclear power. Only political pressure from the general public can bring about the complete phasing out of nuclear energy. That is why we encourage people to become engaged in political discourse by voicing their discontent about the continued use of dangerous and unsustainable energy sources.
We develop ideas for strategies and campaigns and publish materials with arguments against nuclear energy, to be used by individual activists and regional groups. This is how we aim to support all those who wish to make their voices heard in the fight against nuclear energy. We also organize campaign days, petitions, information events, and large demonstrations so that there is always a wide range of opportunities for people to get involved. By working with local initiatives, partner organizations, and countless individual opponents of nuclear energy, we have already achieved a great deal!
The story of .ausgestrahlt
.ausgestrahlt was founded by activists of the “X-tausendmal quer” initiative, a network campaigning against nuclear energy by blocking the routes of nuclear waste transports. The aim was to get those members of the public involved in the anti-nuclear movement who supported the cause, but were not actively involved in blocking transport routes. The founders wanted to make the anti-nuclear movement more accessible, so that people could get on board even if they didn’t have the time or means to protest on site.
In 2008, .ausgestrahlt became one of the leading figures in the fight against nuclear energy when public interest in the movement rose amid reports that energy companies were lobbying to extend the operating times of nuclear power plants. The increase in support enabled us to employ two full-time activists to lead the organization for the first time. Cooperating with both regional initiatives and larger environmental organizations, we achieved our initial goal of reigniting the movement.
Large crowds rallied against nuclear energy in the years that followed. In November 2008, 16,000 people took to the streets to protest against the transport of so-called CASTOR casks with high-level radioactive waste to the interim storage facility at Gorleben. A crowd of 50,000 turned out in Berlin in 2009. In 2010, an astounding 150,000 were part of human chains between the nuclear power plants of Krümmel and Brunsbüttel and surrounding the power plant in Biblis as well as protests at the interim storage facility in Ahaus on the same day. Yet despite continued protests throughout the autumn of 2010, with 100,000 people demanding the end of nuclear energy at a rally in Berlin, the German government stood by its decision to extend the operating times of nuclear power plants. .ausgestrahlt continued to grow as an organization, employing six activists by the end of 2010. At this point, we set ourselves a new goal: that all nuclear power plants should be shut down permanently. This was also supported by public opinion.
After the Fukushima meltdown in 2011, the anti-nuclear movement experienced a huge boost, with 23 people working at our office. Hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets until the government finally listened to their demands. It decided to shut down eight reactors with immediate effect and cancelled plans to extend the operating times of those power plants that remained in operation. In 2013, the year of a general election, we were hot on the heels of policymakers demanding at every opportunity that nuclear power in Germany be phased out more quickly, using surveys, expert opinions, and huge banners in Berlin’s government district.
Despite resistance from numerous policymakers and business leaders, the anti-nuclear movement successfully prevented an extension of the operating time of a nuclear power plant in Southern Germany (Grafenrheinfeld), which was eventually taken out of service in 2015, half a year earlier than planned: a huge success that was celebrated by thousands – including .ausgestrahlt.
In the following years, our protest against the operation of nuclear power plants focused on individual reactors. We demanded that they be shut down due to safety issues such as loose screws in Philippsburg and cracks in heat exchanger tubes in Neckarwestheim and Lingen in order to reduce the nuclear risk in Germany. Although none of these reactors were taken out of operation as a consequence, the media reported widely on reactor safety issues. As of 2020, despite placating statements from the operators and regulatory bodies, old reactors still pose a significant risk, as more cracks are forming all the time. .ausgestrahlt continues to inform the public regarding these problems and to advocate the plants’ immediate shutdown.
In addition to the risks of power plant operation, nuclear waste is another focus of our work. Together with other anti-nuclear initiatives, .ausgestrahlt has organized a conference on nuclear waste in Berlin and fought for transparency of the national nuclear waste commission and against exports of nuclear waste from German reactors. To prevent the consequential costs of nuclear power from being socialized, .ausgestrahlt developed a satirical campaign against utility company E.on and held a speech at its annual stockholders’ meeting, thus fuelling the debate on consequential costs.
This debate continued into 2016, when .ausgestrahlt provided critical commentary on the work of a federal commission on nuclear power financing and protested against plans to isolate the costs of nuclear waste disposal in a “bad bank”. We also exposed the tax dodges of nuclear utilities that led to a tax loss of € 800 million and demanded that nuclear fuel elements continue to be taxed.
In 2018, .ausgestrahlt pulled off a coup by publishing a map of areas that may be considered for the location of Germany’s final repository for nuclear waste. We regularly comment on the search for a deep geological repository for high-level waste, criticizing the non-transparent and inadequate procedures and demanding actual civic participation.
.ausgestrahlt has received a number of awards for its commitment to the fight against atomic energy, including the “Stromrebell 2015” award for .ausgestrahlt speaker Jochen Stay and the “2017 Nuclear Free Future Award”.
Our team is currently comprised of 17 people, 13 of whom work from our Hamburg office. .ausgestrahlt and the entire anti-nuclear movement are currently facing new challenges as we continue to call on the government to deliver on their promises concerning the nuclear power plants in operation until the end of 2022. While .ausgestrahlt keeps raising awareness of the fact that the German population is still exposed to the risk of a serious nuclear accident until the last reactor is finally shut down in 2022, we also focus on the problem of nuclear waste. The energy utilities that have produced large amounts of nuclear waste must dispose of it in a safe and responsible manner, both terms of costs and environmental impact. We also campaign to salvage and accelerate the transformation of the energy sector towards renewable energies. Although we focus on the situation in Germany, we seek to be part of a worldwide movement for a future without nuclear power.
Your donation towards the end of nuclear energy
Our work towards ending nuclear energy costs a lot of money: well-informed research, dependable public relations work, effective campaigns, and quality materials to support all those who are fighting against nuclear energy don’t come for free. We therefore depend on your financial support.
All donations – big or small, regular or one-off – help us in our work!
Donations can be made through our » online donation form (in German), where you will find several easy and secure payment options, including PayPal and credit card.
Alternatively, you can transfer your donation directly to our GLS bank account:
IBAN: DE51 4306 0967 2009 3064 00
BIC: GENO DEM1 GLS