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Group ‘disappointed’ that reactors being treated as transitional technology Yves Desbazeille: ‘We remain disappointed that nuclear continues to be treated as a transitional technology’. The European nuclear energy industry has welcomed a decision to include nuclear in the bloc’s sustainable finance taxonomy under certain conditions, but warned that some of the criteria put forward will prove very challenging to attain.

“We remain disappointed that nuclear continues to be treated as a transitional technology,” said Foratom director-general Yves Desbazeille. “We firmly believe that it contributes to climate mitigation objectives and does not cause more harm than any other power-producing technology already considered as taxonomy compliant.”

According to the proposed regulations announced on 2 February, nuclear can be considered as taxonomy compliant as long as it meets several stringent conditions, including:

Date: Saturday, 05 February 2022
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‘Today we are setting out strict conditions to help mobilise finance to support the energy transition’ The European commission has officially put forward regulations to label nuclear energy as sustainable under its financial taxonomy regulations, ending months of uncertainty and wrangling over whether the industry would have a significant place in the bloc’s transition to zero carbon.

The legislation means nuclear will now be labelled as a “green” energy source that could contribute to Europe’s transition to climate neutrality.

The commission said in a statement that the college of commissioners – a body made up of 27 policy commissioners – reached a political agreement on the text of the new regulations, known as a complementary delegated act, which could now become law on 1 January 2023.

It said a great deal of private investment is needed for the EU to become climate neutral by 2050. The taxonomy aims to guide private investment to activities that are needed to achieve climate neutrality.

The taxonomy does not determine whether a certain technology will or will not be part of a member state’s energy mix. “The objective is to step up the transition, by drawing on all possible solutions to help us reach our climate goals,” the commission said.

Date: Thursday, 03 February 2022
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European unions on 27 July reiterated calls for the European Commission (EC) to include nuclear power in its green goals. In a joint letter to EC President Ursula von der Leyen, 18 trade unions in the energy sector from 10 countries said nuclear energy must be included in a delegated act of the European taxonomy. The unions - from Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Hungary, Romania, Sweden, Slovak Republic and Slovenia - called for "a dialogue with the purpose of nuclear energy to play its full potential and build an economically efficient and socially just carbon-free Europe by 2050".

Date: Friday, 30 July 2021
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The slightly elevated levels of three different radioisotopes recently detected in northern Europe are probably related to a nuclear reactor which is either operating or undergoing maintenance, the International Atomic Energy Agency said in a statement on 3 July.

The recorded air concentrations of the particles were very low and posed no risk to human health and the environment, the statement said.

However, the IAEA also said the geographical origin of the release has not yet been determined.

Last week, Estonia, Finland and Sweden reported levels of ruthenium-103, caesium-134 and caesium-137 isotopes in the air which were higher than usual.

The IAEA, in an effort to help identify the possible origin of the radioisotopes, contacted counterparts in Europe and asked for information about whether they were detected in their countries, and if any event there may have been associated with the atmospheric release.

Date: Saturday, 04 July 2020
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Gerard Hogan, advocate general of the European Union Court of Justice said in a non-binding opinion that EU judges should dismiss an appeal by Austria aimed at overturning the approval of UK aid to support construction of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant. He added that a lower EU tribunal was “fully entitled” to dismiss the Austrian challenge.

Date: Tuesday, 12 May 2020
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The European Court of Justice should dismiss an appeal brought by Austria in respect of the European Commission's approval of state aid for the planned Hinkley Point C (HPC) nuclear power plant in the UK, Advocate General Gerard Hogan has concluded. His opinion will be taken into account when the European Court of Justice rules on Austria's appeal of the General Court's 2018 decision to reject the case.

Date: Friday, 08 May 2020
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European Union (EU) leaders on 13 December agreed to a 2050 climate neutrality target aiming at a transition away from fossil fuels and a role for nuclear power.

Date: Thursday, 19 December 2019
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