battle between France and Germany on the place of nuclear power

By Elsa Bembaron



German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron during the Franco-German Council on January 22. LUDOVIC MARIN/AFP

STORY – Two key subjects for French energy sovereignty and its industrial competitiveness will be on the agenda for the week in Brussels.

This is the myth of Sisyphus revisited by the European Union. Every time France thinks it has won a battle to make room for nuclear electricity in the energy transition, the rock falls down the slope. With two major texts on the program for the week, Brussels has enough to make Paris tremble.

The debates on the reform of the architecture of the electricity markets (market design) will open on Tuesday at the European Commission. Two days later, it will be the turn of the “net zero” regulation, to achieve carbon neutrality in 2050. Two key subjects for French energy sovereignty and its industrial competitiveness, with a stumbling block. Can nuclear, carbon-free, have the same treatment as renewable energies (wind, solar, etc.). Paris says yes. Berlin, no, then yes, then no…

Each country retains control of its energy mix

With each new discussion, it is impossible to predict on which side the balance of the ruling coalition in Germany will tip, with a Green party…

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