By Constantin Radut
We have just taken the step towards 2022 and the European Union is facing another major internal dispute. It’s about nuclear power. The main protagonists are France, which took over the presidency of the Council on January 1, and Germany, which did not wake up well after Angela Merkel left the Chancellery.
In short, we are referring to an unannounced announcement by the EU Commission, signed by Ursula Gertrud von der Leyen, in which EU Member States are informed that the Commission has decided to propose that nuclear and natural gas plants are included in the EU taxonomy, as a result, to be subsidized like all other types of green energy.
Germany’s reaction on January 1, 2022 was brutal: nicht. On January 2, the Berlin Chancellery overturned its verdict, although Germany shut down three more nuclear power plants. Now the German newspapers are trying to put on the shoulders of Austria the whole “scandal” related to the expected decision of the EC and the European Parliament. Germany feels like a fly on the hat. Because it is the EU country, after Poland, that obtains the largest amount of electricity in coal-fired power plants, the most polluting energy resource. In addition, the German traffic light does not always go green.
As for Austria, it is a definite country.. No and no, also in German. For Climate Protection Minister Leonore Gewessler (Greens), the EU Commission’s project is “unacceptable”. She confirmed this on Monday in the Morgenjournal on ORF radio Ö1. If the EU Commission actually implements the plans, Minister Gewessler has once again announced that he will “take legal action” on the basis of legal advice.
In fact, as Der Spiegel remarked the other day, everything is resolved by a compromise between Germany and France. “No, it’s not about technology, it’s about the national interests of Germany and France. The two largest economies in the Union have opposing views on the energy transition – and are now fraternizing in this consensus. While Germany has decided to phase out nuclear power after Fukushima and shut down all nuclear power plants by the end of 2022, France still has 56 reactors in operation. And there should be more in the future if President Emmanuel Macron achieves his goal. Germany, on the other hand, is based on gas: new gas terminals have been planned in the North Sea for years, Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline is ready. ”
As the saying goes, German greens make foam in vain.
French President Emmanuel Macron is determined. In a recent interview with Le Parisien, Macron reiterated his commitment to building new nuclear reactors in France so that 70% of France’s electricity is generated by nuclear power plants.
The advantage of nuclear energy – the French president underlined – is that it allows “the production of energy without emissions and non-intermittent”, while renewables “have a weakness”, namely “that they are intermittent”.
In addition, “it is not true that it is possible to switch from coal to wind or solar energy from one day to the next, because neither the wind always blows nor the sun shines all day,” Macron added.
As can be seen, the EU is reaching a consensus.
In all this chorus of green, conservative or socialist voices, Romania is not heard or seen. We are pleased that, at the request of the US, we have eliminated from the energy market all Chinese companies interested in building two more reactors at the existing Cernavoda Power Plant (which now has an installed capacity of 1400 MW). We are waiting for the Americans… Like during communism!
By Constantin Radut