Paris and Berlin “agree” on French pressure to label green nuclear energy

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Germany and France have “agreed to disagree” on the EU’s decision to label nuclear energy green, German European Minister Anna Luehrmann said on Friday, denying any conflict between the two. European giants on the issue.

The European Commission has published a draft proposal to label nuclear energy, as well as natural gas, as “green” sources eligible for investment under rules to promote a carbon neutral future.

France has led the nuclear charge – its main source of energy – to be on the list, while Germany, which is in the process of shutting down all of its nuclear power plants, remains staunchly opposed to the move.

“We know what the French position is on nuclear power and the French side knows very well what the German position is,” Luehrmann told AFP in an interview.

“So we can say that we agree to disagree on the issue, and then turn to the issues we want to move forward on … from climate protection to sustainable investments, including of European strategic sovereignty. “

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The green energy list, known as the EU’s “taxonomy”, was due to arrive before the end of 2021, but deep divisions among member states have delayed it.

The European Commission quietly distributed a draft text of its plans on New Year’s Eve and said it had started consulting member states on the proposal.

If a majority of member states support it, it will become EU law, entering into force from 2023.

France, which gets around 70% of its electricity from nuclear power, signed a declaration in October of support for nuclear power with nine other EU states, including Poland and the Czech Republic.

“Not the majority”But German Environment Minister Steffi Lemke said it would be “absolutely wrong” to include nuclear energy on the list, arguing that atomic energy “can lead to devastating environmental disasters”.

Germany closed three of its six nuclear power plants at the end of last year and will shut down the others by the end of 2022, in line with Angela Merkel’s timetable for the phase-out of atomic energy.

“We have made it clear to the entire federal government that we are against the inclusion of nuclear as a sustainable financial product,” said Luehrmann.

“We have to go in a different direction for climatic reasons, but also for reasons of political independence, and I see that as an argument against gas and nuclear energy. Because uranium has to come from somewhere.” , she said.

However, Luehrmann conceded that “we also know that we are not the majority in Europe” on the matter.

(AFP)

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