Today I’d like to tell you about an unusual project I discovered in Lower Austria – and I’m not exaggerating when I say that this story is truly one of a kind. The groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of Austria’s first nuclear power plant took place right here, in Zwentendorf on the Danube, in April 1972. After four years of construction work, the plant was completed. I bet you’re wondering what’s so great about that, right? Well, I’ll tell you: a lot of Austrian citizens were completely opposed to generating electricity in this way and protested passionately against it. And they won. In the end, a referendum prevented the brand-new nuclear power plant from ever becoming operational!
A happy end
But this isn’t the end of the story. In 2005, Austrian energy utility company EVN bought the property and built a solar power plant.
Today there is clean, safe and 100% sustainable energy being generated from natural sources in a 3,700-square-meter space – on the same site that was once destined to produce nuclear energy.
What a fantastic plot twist! Local companies were involved in establishing the solar plant. The direct current produced at the plant is converted to alternating current by PV inverters, including 43 devices produced by Austrian manufacturer Fronius, before it is fed into the grid. This is equal to approximately 450 kilowatts of electricity, which provides energy for households and industrial operations in the whole region. Isn’t that awesome?
Zwentendorf is the safest nuclear power plant in the world!
I wonder if I’ll see anything else like it on my travels.