EU Green Taxonomy Scrutinized Over Inclusion of Nuclear, Gas
Plans by the European Union to classify nuclear power and natural gas as "green" investments have divided energy experts, environmental groups and EU members.
Late on Dec. 31, the European Commission confirmed both nuclear and gas would be included in the long-awaited draft of its sustainable finance legislation, a checklist for climate-friendly investments aimed at preventing greenwashing and supporting the EU's pursuit of net-zero by 2050.
While the taxonomy is a guidebook, investments in gas and nuclear would have remained possible regardless of their inclusion, and projects with profitable business models would have continued to receive funding. Conditions for gas are stricter than for nuclear, although it remains to be seen how they are implemented in member states.
Nuclear projects permitted until 2045 will be classified as green, on the condition that countries can safely dispose of the toxic waste and do not create significant harm to the environment. Meanwhile, gas is only included until 2030 and emissions thresholds are also in place.