Navigation and service

"I am impressed by people who have the courage now and then to leave the well-trodden path"

BfS President Inge Paulini interviewed about energy issues

Date 2017.09.15
Interviewed person(s) Dr. Inge Paulini, President of the BfS
Reporter Dagmar Dehmer, Tagesspiegel Background Energy and Climate

Inge Paulini Dr. Inge PauliniDr. Inge Paulini

In the interview with Dagmar Dehmer for the "Tagesspiegel Background Energy and Climate" in September 2017, the President of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS), Inge Paulini, answers four questions on the topic of "energy".

Who is your electricity provider and why?

Paulini: "The electricity from my sockets has been coming from renewable sources for many years now. It is important to me that my electricity neither damages the climate nor comes from nuclear power stations. I am particularly glad to see how easy it is to change electricity providers. It is just a matter of deciding which one - then the switch itself is actually quite easy."

What would tempt you to buy an electric car?

Paulini: "I haven't asked myself this question. I don’t have a car and I don’t miss it. By train, bus and bike I can get almost everywhere - and if I must go by car then I rely on car sharing options.

For the vehicle fleet of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection, ecological viewpoints are obviously of the utmost importance. The BfS already has one electric car and intends to change over its entire fleet, perhaps to hybrid vehicles.

Better coverage is required for this and also the comprehensive provision of charging stations. If new technologies, for example for charging batteries, are to be implemented for this, radiation protection must also be considered. Of primary importance here is the safety of consumers. Furthermore, the BfS is campaigning for further research into as yet unanswered questions."

Who from the energy or environment world has impressed you?

Paulini: "I can't pick out just one person here. So many men and women have done great things for the environment and health. I am impressed by people who have the courage and wisdom now and then to leave the well-trodden path and to seek out what is needed instead. People who are ready to swim against the current because that’s what is needed. And who are prepared to take criticism because of their beliefs. Because others can then follow along these new paths and make them broader.

The same goes for financial experts who have recognised that climate protection is their problem too and are establishing sustainable investments. Or promoters of nuclear technology, who have recognised the potential for risk and who have campaigned passionately for withdrawal. And and and... Not to mention young people, who flout the beauty ideal of tanned skin and lie on the beach under a parasol instead of in the blazing sun."

Which energy innovations of recent times do you consider particularly important? And what else would you like to see?

Paulini: "Although no energy innovations immediately spring to mind, there is however this buzzword Share Economy, which in turn has effects on energy generation. Because we no longer need to possess lots of things but just use them when needed, we need fewer resources, less space to store them and less energy. Because we share cars with one another, give good clothing to others or do not throw away food, we are caring for the environment and at the same time often save time and money.

Together with the recycling economy, this for me is one of the most important developments of recent years. It has been promoted not only through a change in awareness but also and especially through the internet – and it should now be firmly supported and further developed by us all."

State of 2017.09.15

© Bundesamt für Strahlenschutz