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Agency says more support is needed for development of new generation reactors The European Union needs to offer more support for nuclear power with the bloc facing the largest fleet decline across advanced economies and the possibility that the share of nuclear in the electricity mix could fall from 25% in 2017 to 5% in 2040, a report by the International Energy Agency says.

The report, which reviews energy policies in the European Union, says the EU should support a broader spectrum of research, development and demonstration on advanced nuclear concepts and small modular reactors, including for heat production for industrial uses and cogeneration.

It calls for the integration of flexible nuclear and renewable sources and progress towards harmonisation and standardisation. It says there is a need for the development of common approaches for licensing.

The report warns that the EU’s fleet of 126 commercial reactors is ageing after the large construction wave in the 1970s and 1980s and the much more modest rate of construction since then.

Date: Friday, 26 June 2020
Original article: nucnet.org/news/iea-reports-warns-of-largest-fleet-decline-across-advanced-economies-6-4-2020

Policy uncertainty is ‘preventing industry from making investment decisions’ Policy uncertainty in a number of countries is preventing the nuclear industry from making investment decisions and “forthright recognition” by governments of the value of nuclear energy would encourage policymakers to explicitly include nuclear in their long-term energy plans and commitments under the Paris Agreement, the International Energy Agency has said.

The Paris-based agency said in a report on meeting climate goals that nuclear policy uncertainty is partly the result of inconsistencies between stated policy goals – such as climate change mitigation – and policy actions.

While some countries maintain they can meet decarbonisation objectives while phasing out nuclear (Belgium, Germany, Spain, Switzerland) or reducing its share (France), others continue to recognise the need to increase nuclear reliance: China, Russia, India, Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Egypt, Finland, Hungary, Poland, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the UK and Uzbekistan.

In late 2018, the EU long-term energy strategy clearly stated that nuclear power – together with renewables – will form the backbone of the EU power system in order to reach carbon neutrality by 2050, the IEA said. At the same time, ongoing EU taxonomy discussions regarding the eligibility of nuclear power generation for sustainability funding highlight the difficulties in recognising the contribution that nuclear energy makes to climate change mitigation.

Date: Friday, 12 June 2020
Original article: nucnet.org/news/agency-calls-for-forthright-recognition-of-nuclear-energy-6-4-2020

New-build projects are making progress, but governments are still struggling with finding the right financing package for large reactors The delayed Flamanville-3 is one of three EPR units under construction in Europe. The others are at Olkiluoto in Finland and Hinkley Point in the UK. Photo courtesy EDF. Western Europe

The UK is facing a major challenge to replace its aging fleet of Generation I nuclear power plants, many of which are scheduled to shut down in 2023.

The project by French state utility EDF to build two Generation III EPR units at Hinkley Point C in Somerset is on track for connection to the grid by 2025. Once in commercial operation the two units will provide up to 7% of the total electricity demand. Two similar units are planned for the Sizewell site in Suffolk.

However, press reports have suggested EDF is in “a race against time” to secure a funding deal for Sizewell C as delays risk making the project prohibitively expensive.

According to The Times newspaper EDF has hired Rothschild as financial adviser for the project and says it wants a “definitive way forward” from the government this year so it can start construction in 2022.

Date: Friday, 17 January 2020
Original article: nucnet.org/news/what-lies-in-store-in-2020-1-4-2020

Low-carbon nuclear is an essential component of a low-carbon economy, says industry group The Brussels-based nuclear industry group Foratom has welcomed the EU’s goal of providing financial support to coal-dependant regions to help them in their decarbonisation efforts, but said it regrets the European Commission’s proposal to exclude such funds being used for nuclear plants.

The funding proposal is part of the commission’s “just transition mechanism” (JTM), details of which were announced on Tuesday along with €1 trillion in funding for the European Green Deal, which was adopted by the commission last month and sets out ambitious climate and environmental objectives for the bloc.

The JTM, and an associated just transition fund, was one of the proposals in the Green Deal, which is the major initiative in the bloc’s efforts to become zero-carbon by 2050.

The total investment expected to be mobilised under the proposed JTM will be €100bn over 2021-2027 with financing coming from the EU budget, co-financing from member states, EU regional aid programmes and the European Investment Bank, the commission said.

Date: Thursday, 16 January 2020
Original article: nucnet.org/news/europe-s-just-transition-loans-should-be-extended-to-nuclear-1-3-2020

European Union (EU) lawmakers and member countries on 16 December agreed on a deal to promote environmentally-friendly investment after weeks of discussions on whether to exclude nuclear projects.

Date: Friday, 20 December 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsnuclear-not-excluded-from-eu-taxonomy-regulation-7563323

Climate scientist James E Hansen and others have written to the Financial Times, making the case for the inclusion of nuclear power in the EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy. The text of the letter, published yesterday, and the list of signatories to it, follows.

Date: Wednesday, 18 December 2019
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Viewpoint-EU-must-include-nuclear-power-in-its-lis

Nuclear has a place in Europe's energy mix, but rising costs - even if only perceived - need to be addressed to ensure future growth, speakers agreed at the New Nuclear Watch Institute's (NNWI's) first annual forum, held in London yesterday.

Date: Friday, 08 November 2019
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Costs-and-financing-key-to-Europes-nuclear-future

As a result of higher energy consumption, CO2 emissions rose 1.7% last year and hit a new record, according to the latest data from the International Energy Agency (IEA). The Paris-based agency’s Global Energy & CO2 Status Report, released today, shows that the global energy system emitted 33 billion tonnes of CO2 in 2018.

Date: Tuesday, 26 March 2019
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/IEA-demands-increase-in-clean-energy-as-emissions