The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry Fukushima Chernobyl Mayak Three Mile Island Atomic Testing Radiation Isotope

European Union’s rift over nuclear power

EU faces nuclear rift in decision on energy funds, future, Ravalli Republic, By SAMUEL PETREQUIN and RAF CASERT – Associated Press By SAMUEL PETREQUIN and RAF CASERT -17 Dec 21,

BRUSSELS (AP) — The leaders of the European Union’s two most important nations faced reporters together during a joint news conference early Friday, a show of unity at the end of the EU’s final summit of the year.

Then two words – “nuclear energy” – intervened.

Heading into the Christmas week, atomic power is a topic on which France and Germany broadly differ, and one that has become a big thorn in the side of the EU as the 27-nation bloc decides whether to include nuclear-generated energy among the economic activities that qualify for sustainable investment.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who took office last week, and French President Emmanuel Macron agreed on most of the issues tackled during Thursday’s summit, including Ukraine-Russia tensions and an immigration dispute with Belarus.

On the the sustainable investment rules, however, the two leaders have yet to reach a compromise. The rift over nuclear energy was enough to scuttle any agreement on energy prices during the summit.

A big rise in energy prices has reignited the debate about whether the EU should promote nuclear power projects as a way of becoming greener and more energy independent.

France has asked for nuclear power to be included in the so-called “taxonomy” by the end of the year, leading the charge with several other EU countries that operate nuclear power plants.

The group initially faced strong opposition from Germany and other members that wanted nuclear power to be ineligible for green financing, but Scholz adopted a peacebuilding tone in the summit’s final hours early Friday.

“We are talking about countries with different business models. It’s important that each EU country can pursue its own approach without Europe becoming disunited,” Scholz said. “At the end of the day, we will have to come together despite the different priorities we may have set.”

Germany’s remaining nuclear power plants are due to go offline next year. France derives about 70% of its electricity from nuclear energy……………..

making future nuclear power projects eligible for billions in euros available as part of the European Green Deal while avoiding “greenwashing” remains a controversial issue.

……..  “The lack of agreement shows how lively this is, not only in our country, but throughout Europe,” Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, who faces a domestic crisis over how to phase out nuclear plants and still maintain energy security to his citizens.

De Croo suggested that amid the energy price crunch, nuclear energy and gas could be temporarily eligible for funds……..

The ball is now with the EU’s chief, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. She is expected to present before the end of the year the list of activities eligible for the green investment funds and must decide whether nuclear energy and natural gas make the cut.

Von der Leyen has been under pressure from environmental groups and Green European lawmakers to resist the inclusion of both.

“Fossil gas and nuclear power have no place in the EU taxonomy” for sustainable activities, said Sven Giegold, a Green lawmaker in the European Parliament…….

December 18, 2021 - Posted by | climate change, EUROPE

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: