“In order to meet the EU’s climate and energy targets for 2030 and reach the objectives of the European green deal, it is vital that EU directs investments towards sustainable projects and activities. This is achieved by the action plan on financing sustainable growth called for the creation of a common classification system for sustainable economic activities, or an “EU taxonomy”. The Taxonomy Regulation, published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 22 June 2020, establishes the basis for the EU taxonomy by setting out 4 overarching conditions that an economic activity has to meet in order to qualify as environmentally sustainable.
Under the Taxonomy Regulation, the European Commission had to come up with the actual list of environmentally sustainable activities by defining technical screening criteria for each environmental objective through delegated acts. A first delegated act on sustainable activities for climate change adaptation and mitigation objectives was adopted on 4 June 2021. Already in 2020 the EC launched in-depth work to assess whether or not to include nuclear energy in the EU taxonomy of environmentally sustainable activities. As the first step, the Joint Research Centre drafted a technical report on the ‘do no significant harm’ aspects of nuclear energy. This report has been reviewed by two sets of experts, the Group of Experts on radiation protection and waste management under Article 31 of the Euratom Treaty, as well as the Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks on environmental impacts. It is planned to publish a second delegated act for the remaining objectives soon.
It is in this context that NTW has written this open letter to the Commission to ask when and how citizens will be consulted on whether or not to include nuclear energy in the European Taxonomy.”