Last year the European commission set up a technical expert group on sustainable finance. One of the group’s tasks is to help the commission develop an EU classification system – the so-called EU taxonomy – to determine whether an economic activity is environmentally sustainable.
Foratom said that in the case of nuclear, the group’s report focused on the issue of waste and used it as an excuse to exclude nuclear from the taxonomy.
For other technologies, however, the waste criteria do not appear to have been applied in the same way, Foratom said.
Foratom urged the commission to set up a new group of experts with technical expertise on nuclear life cycle technologies to take another look at nuclear power. Ideally, this work should be completed before the end of 2019, Foratom said.
“We strongly believe the decision to not include nuclear at this stage in the taxonomy should be reviewed as it is in total contradiction with EU climate policy,” Foratom said. “Also, much still needs to be done in order to ensure that the principle of technological neutrality is maintained.”
“Foratom supports the European commission’s goal of creating a sustainable finance initiative for technologies that can help Europe decarbonise its economy” said the group’s director-general Yves Desbazeille. “However, this initiative should not aim to exclude a particular technology without providing a valid justification”.