EU’s Green Label for Nuclear and Gas Faces Opposition from European Parliament

The European Parliament economic and environmental committees support an attempt to block EU’s green label on some nuclear and gas projects, setting the stage for a full parliament vote next month to decide whether to accept or reject the rules.

The two committees are backing a resolution which attempts to bloc the European Commission plan to include nuclear and gas in the EU’s “green taxonomy”, a system that labels sustainable investments to steer private capital towards projects that support the bloc’s climate targets.

Both the EU member states and lawmakers are divided over whether gas and nuclear  should earn that label, signaling broader disagreements over how Europe should meet climate targets.

The European Parliament will vote on the resolution in July. If half of the 705 lawmakers support it, the gas and nuclear rules will be blocked.

The resolution says gas and nuclear cannot be considered sustainable based on existing EU laws, and labelling them as green would confuse investors.

The supporters of the resolution argue that the bloc is already short of cash and need to spend every euro on renewable energy, such as solar and wind power.

Opponents say the proposed rules clearly state gas and nuclear will be deemed climate friendly only if they are “transitional activities”.

The division among the member states heightened after the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which is the EU’s top gas supplier. Eastern European member states argue that gas investments are needed to replace more polluting coal, while other say carbon emitting gas labeled as sustainable would undermine the bloc’s targets to curb emissions.

Meanwhile, pro-nuclear states including France view the carbon-free energy source as crucial to meet climate targets, while opponents like Germany cite concerns over waste disposal.

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