In Germany the energy shortage seems to have ended. At least that’s what the expiry of the Energy Saving Ordinance in mid-April suggests. Buildings and monuments may then be illuminated again at night. But numerous cities and municipalities prefer to keep the buildings in the dark.
Inhalt / Content
Energy shortages required regulation
This weekend, one of the regulations that have been issued very often in recent years will expire. The “ordered” energy savings no longer need to be followed from Sunday. These are therefore obsolete. This ordinance was necessary because otherwise there could have been a black-out due to the energy shortage. This is due to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. The gas turbines used to generate electricity were also immediately affected by the sudden stop in natural gas deliveries. The fact that the gas supply stop resulted from a series of imposed sanctions should only be mentioned in passing. In addition, there was also a power shortage due to numerous nuclear power plants that had meanwhile been “retired”. If necessary, 3 nuclear reactors were left in operation. But these are expected to be finally switched off from April 15th.
At night the light had to be turned off
The decreed energy-saving measures also included switching off the lighting for buildings, monumental structures and memorials in the towns and communities. churches also fell into this category. With the end of this regulation, the lighting may be put back into operation overnight. However, numerous municipalities do not put their night lighting into operation, so katholisch.de the result of a survey by the Evangelical Press Service (epd). Accordingly, some well-known churches will remain in the dark.
Berlin Senate already has a new date
It remains dark for the Frauenkirche in Dresden, the cathedral and the “Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church” in Berlin. Other “thrifty” cities are Speyer and Hanover. In Berlin, the Senate has even set the duration of the continued darkness until September 2024. The former catchment area of the reformer Martin Luther in Wittenberg is also left to the darkness at night.
Cost savings and (of course) climate protection are given as the reason for the continued abandonment of night lighting.
In some towns and communities, however, it gets light again at night. These include Nuremberg, Munich and Magdeburg.
Cologne drives “double track”. General architectural monuments should remain dark even after the end of the regulation. An exception, however, is the Cologne Cathedral. This seems to be so important that the night lighting has been back on since Easter and thus before the end of the regulation. Does it matter that the Federal Office of Administration is based in Cologne?
Darkness around churches does not have to be harm
If such church buildings, whether Protestant or Catholic, remain in the dark out of anticipatory obedience or for cost reasons, it doesn’t matter. The darkness around these buildings has a symbolic character, as is the case with the communication of the gospel to the people.