July 15, 2022

EUROPE: European Union Voted To Label Gas, and Nuclear Investment 'Green'. Dutch Join Germany, Austria, In Reverting To Coal. NWO Psychos Who Caused Energy Despair Are Blaming Russia!

Reuters published July 6, 2022: EU votes to tag gas, nuclear investment 'green'. The European Parliament has backed EU rules labelling investments in gas and nuclear power plants as climate-friendly, thwarting attempts to block the law that has exposed deep rifts over how to fight climate change.

Reuters News
reporting by Kate Abnett; additional reporting by Vera Eckert; Editing by John Chalmers, Alexandra Hudson
Wednesday July 6, 2022

BRUSSELS - The European Parliament on Wednesday backed EU rules labelling investments in gas and nuclear power plants as climate-friendly, throwing out an attempt to block the law that has exposed deep rifts between countries over how to fight climate change.

The vote paves the way for the European Union proposal to pass into law, unless 20 of the bloc's 27 member states decide to oppose the move, which is seen as very unlikely.

The new rules will add gas and nuclear power plants to the EU "taxonomy" rulebook from 2023, enabling investors to label and market investments in them as green.

Out of 639 lawmakers present, 328 opposed a motion that sought to block the EU gas and nuclear proposals.

The European Commission welcomed the result. It proposed the rules in February after more than a year of delay and intense lobbying from governments and industries.

"The Complementary Delegated Act is a pragmatic proposal to ensure that private investments in gas and nuclear, needed for our energy transition, meet strict criteria," EU financial services chief Mairead McGuinness said.

The rules have split EU countries, lawmakers and investors. Brussels redrafted the rules multiple times, flip-flopping over whether to grant gas plants a green tag. Its final proposal fuelled fierce debate about how to hit climate goals amid a crisis over dwindling Russian gas supplies.

Gas is a fossil fuel that produces planet-warming emissions - but far less than coal, and some EU states see it as a temporary alternative to replace the dirtier fuel.

Nuclear energy is free from CO2 emissions but produces radioactive waste. Supporters such as France say nuclear is vital to meet emissions-cutting goals, while opponents cite concerns about waste disposal. read more

Slovakian prime minister Eduard Heger said the vote result was good for energy security and emissions-cutting targets.

"We'll remain on the way to climate neutrality by 2050," he said.

Luxembourg and Austria, which both oppose nuclear power and have warned against labelling gas as green, said they would challenge the law in court.

"It is neither credible, ambitious nor knowledge-based, endangers our future and is more than irresponsible," Austrian climate minister Leonore Gewessler said.

Climate campaigners criticised the move, with Greenpeace saying it would also mount a legal challenge.

"This is a poor signal to the rest of the world that may undermine the EU's leadership position on climate action," said Anders Schelde, chief investment officer at Danish pension fund AkademikerPension.

Industry groups welcomed the vote. Ingbert Liebing, managing director of Germany's local utility association VKU, called it "an important sign of the role of natural gas as a bridge to achieving climate goals."

The EU taxonomy aims to clear up the murky world of sustainable investing, by ensuring any financial products making eco-friendly claims meet certain standards. Gas plants, for example, must switch to low-carbon gases by 2035 and meet an emissions limit. read more

How the law will impact investing trends is yet to be seen. The taxonomy does not prohibit investments in activities without the green label.
France24 News
written by AFP staff
Monday June 20, 2022

The Hague – The Dutch joined Germany and Austria in reverting to coal power on Monday following an energy crisis provoked by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The Netherlands said it would lift all restrictions on power stations fired by the fossil fuel, which were previously limited to just over a third of output.

Berlin and Vienna made similar announcements on Sunday as Moscow, facing biting sanctions over Ukraine, cuts gas supplies to energy-starved Europe.

"The cabinet has decided to immediately withdraw the restriction on production for coal-fired power stations from 2002 to 2024," Dutch climate and energy minister Rob Jetten told journalists in The Hague.

The Dutch minister said his country had "prepared this decision with our European colleagues over the past few days".

Germany however said it still aimed to close its coal power plants by 2030, in light of the greater emissions of climate-changing CO2 from the fossil fuel.

"The 2030 coal exit date is not in doubt at all," economy ministry spokesman Stephan Gabriel Haufe said at a regular news conference.

The target was "more important than ever", he added.

'More countries being squeezed' Russia's invasion of its pro-Western neighbour has sent global prices for energy soaring and raised the prospect of shortages if supplies were to be cut off.

Russian energy giant Gazprom has already stopped deliveries to a number of European countries, including Poland, Bulgaria, Finland and the Netherlands.

Germany's reliance on Russian energy imports has made it particularly vulnerable as Moscow looks for leverage against the West.

The Dutch are less reliant, depending on Russia for around 15 percent of their gas supplies compared to the EU average of 40 percent. But they are still concerned.

"I want to emphasise that at the moment there's no acute gas shortage," Dutch minister Jetten said. "However, more countries are now being squeezed (by Russia). That worries us."

The Dutch government said it was also making an "urgent appeal" to companies and business to save as much energy as possible ahead of the winter.

Germany's decision to power up its coal power plants came after Gazprom cut deliveries to Germany via the Nord Stream gas pipeline last week.

The move, presented by Gazprom as a technical issue, has been criticised as "political" by Berlin.

German Economy Minister Robert Habeck, a Green party politician, described the decision to revert to coal as "bitter, but indispensable for reducing gas consumption".

'Unexpected situation'

Austria's government meanwhile announced Sunday that it would reopen a mothballed coal power station because of power shortages arising from reduced deliveries of gas from Russia.

The authorities would work with the Verbund group, the country's main electricity supplier, to get the station in the southern city of Mellach back in action, said the Chancellery.

The European Commission noted Monday that "some of the existing coal capacities might be used longer than initially expected" because of the new energy landscape in Europe.

"We know that the energy mix and the plans of member states will adjust slightly because we are in an unexpected situation," Commission spokesman Tim McPhie said at a press briefing.

Germany, Europe's largest economy, has managed to reduce the share of its natural gas supplied by Russia from 55 percent before the invasion to 35 percent.

The government has also mandated the filling of gas reserves to 90 percent ahead of the European winter at the end of the year, to hedge against a further reduction in supply.

Germany's government, a coalition between the Social Democrats, Liberals and Greens, aims "ideally" to close all coal power plants by 2030.

Their agreement, reached at the end of last year, brought forward the previous government's aim to shut the plants by 2038.


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