The European Commission has extended by nine days, until January 21, the deadline by which it will be able to receive comments from member states on its proposal to consider some nuclear power plants and some power plants that use natural gas as fuel sustainable, AFP reported on Monday.
On 1 January, the Commission announced that it had opened a phase of consultations with Member States and experts on its draft legislation, which was due to end on 12 January. Gathered opinions could lead to changes in the text, the final version of which will be published by the end of January.
“The deadline for feedback on the nuclear and gas taxonomy project has been extended from January 12 to 21,” EC environmental spokesman Stephan Gabriel Haufe said on Twitter on Monday.
EC spokesman Eric Mamer confirmed the postponement. “We are only at the beginning of the year, it was the Christmas holidays. It is therefore normal to offer a little more respite, “he said at a news conference.
According to the European Commission’s proposal, investments in nuclear power plants would be considered “green” if they use the latest technological standards and are accompanied by a concrete plan for the disposal of radioactive waste. The objective is to direct private investments in activities that contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, according to Agerpres.ro.
The inclusion of the nuclear sector in activities that will benefit from funding is being challenged by some EU member states, including Germany, and environmental NGOs. The initiative is instead supported by France and many Central and Eastern European countries, which point out that renewable energy (wind, solar) has an intermittent production and will not be able to meet electricity needs alone.
The EU executive’s proposal states that gas-fired energy production will be considered green if it has a transition to clean energy, with natural gas generating 50% lower emissions than coal, the EU executive said in a statement. a qualified majority of 20 of the 27 Member States, accounting for 65% of the EU population or a majority in the European Parliament.
Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. In addition, they want nuclear energy to be considered sustainable, with France being the most vocal on the subject.
With regard to nuclear energy, opponents of the plan, most notably Germany and Austria, say the long-term risks of radioactivity outweigh the short-term lack of CO2 emissions.
After four months of publication of the final text, the European Parliament will have the opportunity to reject it by a simple majority vote. In theory, the European Council could oppose a vote, but it would have to bring together 20 member states, which seems highly unlikely.