Australian news, and some related international items

EU Labels Gas and Nuclear as ‘Sustainable,’ Betraying Climate Promises

the taxonomy is the result of a “Faustian pact”

Socialist Project,  July 13, 2022  •  Anna Maria Merlo

It is a “disgrace,” a “scandalous result,” but “the struggle continues.” Green, left-wing and environmental organizations have strongly criticized the result of last Wednesday’s vote in the European Parliament, which rejected, by 328 votes to 278 and 33 abstentions, the “objection” – which amounted to a veto – against the inclusion of gas and nuclear in the Renewable Energy Taxonomy, at least as a transition, that had been put to the European Parliament’s Environment (ENVI) committee on June 14.

As the veto failed, the Commission’s text presented in January was approved, which deems certain investments for energy production in CO2-neutral nuclear power plants built until 2030 (and adopting a protocol for greater safety from 2025 and plans for waste storage from 2050) as “sustainable.” Also accepted are gas-fired power plants, provided they use the latest technology and allow the closure of even more polluting coal-fired plants.

The story does not end there, however: Austria and Luxembourg intend to go to the European Court of Justice, a court case that will be joined by various oppositions. The European Council will need to approve the Commission’s line, but there is opposition from eight countries (not enough, however, for a qualified majority that would block the decision)

Environment Takes a Back Seat

The Commission on Wednesday assured that it “remains determined to use all available instruments to move the EU away from carbon-intensive energy sources.” In these hours, the focus of the Commission and member states is all on the Russian threat to turn off the gas tap, and ecological concerns are taking a back seat………………………

Greenpeace reminded on Wednesday that including gas in the taxonomy means giving a gift to Putin: that’s at least €4-billion a year for Moscow to finance the war in Ukraine, €32-billion until 2030. The strengthening of the dollar against the euro and rising energy prices also help to fill the Russian coffers………..

for the Greens, the taxonomy is the result of a “Faustian pact” between France and Germany: the latter, anti-nuclear, has traded Paris’s support for gas for support for French (and Eastern European) nuclear power. “By keeping gas and nuclear as sustainable in the taxonomy,” the S&D group says, the conservatives have shamefully betrayed the EU’s climate ambitions………………………………….


July 14, 2022 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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