In Switzerland, the energy transition is defined as the period from 2011, following the Fukushima nuclear accident, to 2035, or even 2050. During this period, our energy system will undergo fundamental changes, following the decision of the Federal Council and Parliament to abandon nuclear power and the commitment to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
The challenges are of several kinds: strategic (maintaining a high level of security of supply, not only for electricity in the absence of nuclear power plants but also for fuels and combustibles), socio-economic (keeping energy prices affordable for all), environmental(minimising the impact on nature and the landscape) and climatic (reducing our greenhouse gas emissions).
The decision to phase out nuclear power means decommissioning our nuclear power plants at the end of their operating period without replacing them with new ones. As a result, we will have to make up the resulting shortfall in electricity production in one way or another.
The vast majority of the scientific community believes that emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases, linked to human activities, play an important role in the global warming and ocean acidification that is currently observed worldwide.
Switzerland is by no means an exception in this regard. All countries, depending on their particular circumstances, face an obligation to embark on an energy transition, given the global nature of the energy issues: greenhouse gas emissions, an increasingly costly and polluting quest for new fossil resources, questions about nuclear energy, geopolitical instability.