France, Bulgaria and Eight more European Union countries, mainly from the eastern part of the continent, have come up with a joint initiative supporting nuclear energy, AFP reported.
The ten countries said nuclear has a role in the fight against global warming in a joint article published yesterday in the French daily Figaro and several other European newspapers. They note that nuclear energy “contributes decisively to the independence of our energy and electricity sources.”
In addition to France and Bulgaria, the other eight countries that signed the article are Romania, the Czech Republic, Finland, Slovakia, Croatia, Slovenia, Poland and Hungary.
Nuclear energy “protects European consumers from price volatility,” they said, amid a sharp rise in natural gas prices over the past few months. According to the ten countries, it is “absolutely necessary” for it to be included in the list of climate- and environment-friendly energy sources that the European Commission must propose in the coming months.
AFP notes that this would open access to “green” funding and provide a competitive advantage to recognized environmental sources.
In addition, the ten countries praise the economic benefits of nuclear energy. According to them, the sector’s development “will generate nearly 1 million highly skilled jobs in Europe.
However, the issue divides EU countries. France, Poland, and the Czech Republic defend nuclear energy, but countries such as Germany, Austria and many NGO’s are fierce opponents. The NGO’s consider the technology risky. Italy doesn’t allow nuclear plants on its territory.
For France, the article, signed by Economy Minister Bruno Le Mer and delegated Industry Minister Agnes Panier-Runache, is an opportunity to highlight his choice to rely on nuclear power plants. Tomorrow, President Emmanuel Macron will present an investment plan worth tens of billions of euros by 2030, in which this sector is expected to occupy a prominent place, AFP notes.
The agency said it was particularly interested in what Macron would say about developing small nuclear reactors in France.