Germany drops proposed green pylon route amid strong opposition.

FT: “Germany’s plans for new network of electricity pylons to distribute green power around the country have suffered a setback after the government scrapped a proposed route in the face of intense local opposition.”
Sigmar Gabriel, the vice-chancellor and economy minister, put a brave face on his decision to drop the plan, saying the proposed 450km of pylons, which cut through rural districts in central Germany, would still be built. Officials will look at alternatives, including route modifications and proposals to bury parts of the line underground.
Protesters were reluctant to claim victory, however, saying that the authorities might simply move the route “10 kilometres in one direction or the other”. They expect further arguments when new proposals are published.
Initiatives such as the new green energy distribution network have been propelled forward by Germany’s ambitious transition away from traditional power generation towards greener sources of energy, known as Energiewende. It is in response to public concerns about global warming and as the result of a decision by Angela Merkel to phase out nuclear power in response to the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011.
The decision to drop the proposed route raises questions about the authorities’ capacity to implement contentious infrastructure schemes in the face of increasingly vocal protests from the inhabitants of affected areas.”