Brussels knows it depends on money, but not everything – including climate protection. If Europe is to become a truly climate-neutral continent, the economic flow from fossil fuels to clean energy must change. “The economic system plays an important role in this,” the European Commission wrote three years ago. The only question is what is pure energy.
Arguments about this are erupting. Europe is working on the details of the “Green Taxonomy”, a type of standard for sustainable investment. Anyone who wants to invest money in the future, in any project, can see at a glance whether this will help save the weather. To this end, the Commission is currently known as the “Delegated Effects”, which allows conspiracy to determine the details. It is now troubling the various member states.
For example, last week, five environment ministers from Austria, Spain, Ireland, Luxembourg and Denmark approached the European Commission. “Do not encourage new investments in taxonomy fossil infrastructure,” he warned five of them. In particular, investing in gas-fired plants in power plants is above the “sustainable” eligibility threshold. She was deeply concerned about suggestions from some member states to raise the bar.
In fact, many Eastern European countries require a green label for natural gas as part of their taxonomy – even as a substitute for coal. Other countries, after all, consider nuclear energy to be particularly sustainable – after all, it does not emit carbon dioxide, which is harmful to the climate. Both groups have one thing in common: they want to define the term “sustainable investment” as broadly as possible. After all, it may also affect future financial circumstances. Green finance politician Sven Geegold warns that the lowest public sector is threatened. “It will be the worst possible future for sustainable finance.”
The European Union is currently examining whether nuclear power is harmless
As is often the case, Germany is in the middle of it all. German Environment Minister Svencha Schulz (SPD) was also asked if he would like to sign the ministers’ letter. She let it go. The government ministry said the evaluation of the proposals has not yet been completed. You did not want to expect that. According to SEZ sources, Finance Minister Peter Altmeyer (CDU) joined his French counterpart Bruno Le Meyer last weekend. It was about gas and nuclear power: is it compatible with the EU’s Green Deal climate plan?, To spend public funds for this?
Gas-fired power plants can now be found in a paper backed by Germany and France – although they do not run on biogas or green hydrogen. Instead, hydrogen, based on a number of expectations for climate protection, will no longer have to be produced from renewable energy – nuclear power will be as optional as France wants it to be.
The European Union is in grave danger. Taxonomy is the world’s first approach that gives investors clear indications of what is and what is not. This is one reason why the European Union’s Scientific Service is now examining whether nuclear energy can be classified as harmless, even in terms of nuclear waste. The fate of the experts should be decided, not political influence.
But in the context of political interference, concerns are growing as to whether this approach will fail. For example, if investment in natural gas and nuclear energy is considered ultimately sustainable, Luxembourg’s energy minister, Claude Terms, sees it as black. “Then the whole credibility of the taxonomy will be lost.”