French energy company EDF has confirmed that it has turned off one reactor of its oldest nuclear power plant. The plant, located directly on the border to Germany, has drawn frequent protests in recent years.
EDF SA, a French energy company, said that it had completed the shutdown of one reactor at its oldest nuclear power plant in Fessenheim near the border of Germany. The nuclear power plant’s second and last reactor will be shut down on June 30.
The company told media outlets that the 900 megawatt reactor’s shutdown began at 8:30 pm on Friday and ended in the small hours of Saturday.
The shutdown was completed normally, but it was an emotional moment for those in the control room, according to EDF. Around 100 people, including employees, reportedly protested against the shutdown.
German and Swiss officials have long demanded that French energy officials close the aging Fessenheim nuclear power plant, which is located on the border of France near Germany and Switzerland, near Freiburg in southwestern Germany.
“The time has finally come,” said German Environment Minister Svenja Schulze on Friday in Berlin, adding that shutting down Fessenheim would make Germany “safer.”