France's Macron says nuclear will remain key energy source

PARIS (Reuters) - Nuclear power will remain a key part of France's energy supplies, President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday in a show of support for the industry even as he looks to reduce nuclear's dominance as a power source. France has said it will cut its reliance on nuclear energy to 50% from 75% by 2035 and has yet to make a final decision on whether to build next-generation EPR nuclear reactors. That is due by 2023, by which time state-controlled utility EDF's Flamanville 3 EPR project should be up and running, but Macron said he wanted to make a big push on preparations by next year

Reuters December 09, 2020 00:11:07 IST
France's Macron says nuclear will remain key energy source

Frances Macron says nuclear will remain key energy source

PARIS (Reuters) - Nuclear power will remain a key part of France's energy supplies, President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday in a show of support for the industry even as he looks to reduce nuclear's dominance as a power source.

France has said it will cut its reliance on nuclear energy to 50% from 75% by 2035 and has yet to make a final decision on whether to build next-generation EPR nuclear reactors.

That is due by 2023, by which time state-controlled utility EDF's Flamanville 3 EPR project should be up and running, but Macron said he wanted to make a big push on preparations by next year.

"The preparatory studies around the construction of new reactors are key and I want them to continue and be wrapped up in the coming months," Macron said during a visit to nuclear components maker Framatome, part of EDF.

EDF, which has been plagued by delays and cost overruns on existing projects, has already said it plans to unveil a new, cheaper-to-build version of its EPR nuclear reactor by mid-2021.

Macron nonetheless signalled broad support for the industry, even as he flagged the need to move more towards renewable energy. He said France's next-generation aircraft carrier would be nuclear-powered.

"The nuclear industry will remain the cornerstone of our strategic autonomy," Macron said.

Some environmental campaigners have hit out at this policy, with Greenpeace calling nuclear energy a "false solution" to climate change concerns, saying it entailed costs that could be better spent on cleaner solutions.

France is continental Europe's only nuclear power. Britain is a nuclear power too, though its relationship with the European Union - from trade to security - once it leaves the EU's orbit on Jan. 1 remains uncertain.

(Reporting by Gwenaelle Barzic, Geert De Clercq; Writing by Matthieu Protard and Sarah White; Editing by Mark Potter)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.