Germany to vote against EU plan to label nuclear as green but won’t sue

BERLIN — Germany will vote in opposition to the European Commission’s controversial “taxonomy” proposal that courses nuclear power as inexperienced however will not file a lawsuit in opposition to it, German officers instructed POLITICO.

A German finance ministry official instructed POLITICO that Berlin notified the French Council presidency that it plans to vote in opposition to the measure. France, which at the moment holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU, had requested international locations to point by Friday how they plan to vote on the proposal.

The Commission offered its long-awaited inexperienced labeling system for investments within the power sector on the finish of final yr. The undeniable fact that nuclear power is assessed as a inexperienced know-how — one thing that France had pushed for — immediately caused a strong backlash from the German authorities and particularly ministers from the Green occasion, which has opposed nuclear power since its basis some 40 years in the past.

However, the proposal was extensively seen as a fudge supposed to placate each Paris and Berlin because it additionally connected a inexperienced label to pure fuel, which Germany has insisted is crucial as a transition know-how because it switches to renewables.

The German Greens have since been pushing to not solely reject the Commission proposal but additionally observe Austria’s example and file a lawsuit in opposition to the plan. But the opposite two coalition companions within the German authorities — the Social Democrats of Chancellor Olaf Scholz and the liberal Free Democratic Party of Finance Minister Christian Lindner — have been warier about such motion. Under a deal reached by the three coalition companions, Berlin will now vote in opposition to the proposal however will not take the Commission to courtroom.

“The German government … will not file a lawsuit because there was no agreement on this,” the finance ministry official mentioned.

That makes Germany’s vote largely symbolic as a result of it might require a “supermajority” of not less than two-thirds of the EU’s 27 international locations, representing 65 % of the bloc’s inhabitants, to dam the EU plan. So far, solely a minority of nations similar to Germany, Austria, Luxembourg and Spain have been vital of the proposal.

The proposal may be stopped if a majority of the European Parliament voted in opposition to it, however that seems unlikely.

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