German unleashes fury at Macron over energy plans – huge EU bust-up brewing

Belgium to shut down its nuclear reactors by 2025

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In a letter to Brussels, Germany reiterated its opposition to the inclusion of nuclear power in the EU sustainable taxonomy and called on the Commission to ease restrictions on fossil fuel based natural gas. The deadline for EU members states to provide their feedback on the sustainable taxonomy proposal expired on Friday.

The EU’s taxonomy is intended to hand a green badge to companies and activities — or to withhold it — to “help shift investments where they are most needed.”

This is part of the bloc’s aim to direct funding towards energy sources with a low or zero carbon footprint, but it has sparked fury among a group of countries who argue that it is not a “green” source

The joint letter signed by Vice-Chancellor and Economy Minister Robert Habeck and Environment Minister Steffi Lemke said: “As the federal government, we have once again clearly expressed our rejection of the inclusion of nuclear energy. It is risky and expensive.”

The German ministers also demanded that the EU Commission ease restrictions on natural gas, calling on them to delete requirements that are aimed at promoting a shift to low-carbon gases such as biomethane or hydrogen in the transition to green energy.

The letter noted that fossil gas used as “a fuel in ultra-modern and efficient gas-fired power plants forms a bridge for a limited transition period” to enable Germany’s “rapid phase-out of coal and thus achieve CO2 savings in the short term.”

The European Commission’s plan to include nuclear energy in the Green taxonomy has previously called prompted sharp criticism from Germany, with its environment minister calling the plan “absolutely wrong”.

The Commission argues that natural gas and nuclear power is a key component in helping lower-income countries transition to cleaner power like solar and offshore wind energy.

During the debate on nuclear energy, France led a group of 12 countries that supported the inclusion of nuclear energy as a part of a green taxonomy.

Germany has been accused of making itself too reliant on imported Russian natural gas, at a time when Moscow is threatening to invade Ukraine.

Previously, Bojan Pancevski, a German author and correspondent slammed Berlin for “going against scientific consensus” and failing to meet its emissions targets after abandoning nuclear energy.

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“The German government must now go against EU consensus, also because it includes the Greens, a party rooted in the anti-nuclear movement.

“Green fundamentals have been rattled recently with the nuclear renaissance and the advent of gentech COVID-19 vaccines.

“Anti-nuclear sentiment is a long part of the national discourse in Germany and Austria, where climate change is often reported with a degree of mysticism while fraudulent anti-science like homoeopathy is covered by medical insurances.”

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