If the EU is to achieve its zero-carbon target 2050, then its current 2030 CO2 reduction targets may not be enough. We therefore support the Commission’s goal of raising this target, so long as it leaves Member States free to choose their own low-carbon energy mix. Expecting them to reduce their GHG emissions, whilst at the same time preventing them from investing in specific low-carbon technologies such as nuclear, would be counter-productive.
As indicated by Fatih Birol upon the publication of the 2019 edition of the IEA’s World Energy Outlook “There is no single or simple way to transform global energy systems. Many technologies & fuels have a part to play across all sectors of the economy.”
FORATOM furthermore supports the goal of designing and implementing a strong industrial strategy. Not only is nuclear key in providing the baseload electricity which other industries depend on at a reasonable cost, it is also an important European industry in itself.
“The European nuclear industry currently sustains more than 1.1 million jobs in the EU and generates more than half a trillion euro in GDP,” said FORATOM Director General Yves Desbazeille. “This is important when we bear in mind the potential impact of the energy transition on citizens. For example, those currently employed in the coal industry could be retrained in order to fill the skills gap in the nuclear industry.”
Both the IPCC (Global Warming of 1.5°C) and the IEA (Nuclear Power in a Clean Energy System) have made it very clear that decarbonisation goals cannot be achieved without nuclear energy. The European Commission (A Clean Planet for all) has confirmed that nuclear will form the backbone of a carbon-free European power system, together with renewables.
The European Atomic Forum (FORATOM) is the Brussels-based trade association for the nuclear energy industry in Europe. The membership of FORATOM is made up of 15 national nuclear associations and through these associations, FORATOM represents nearly 3,000 European companies working in the industry and supporting around 1,100,000 jobs.