The government is working to reduce the share of nuclear energy in electricity generation by up to 50% by 2035, the Minister of Ecological Transition, Francois de Rougue, said on Sunday, confirming the horizon mentioned by the Prime Minister in September.
Responding to a question during the grand European project 1-CNEWS-Les Echos on multi-year energy programming (EPP), which will determine France’s strategy for ten years and should be published before the end of the month, Mr. de Rougue responded that “The deadline we are working on”.
The 2015 Energy Transition Act provided for the reduction of this share of nuclear energy to 50% by 2020. But Nicholas Hulot, the predecessor of François de Rougue, who resigned at the end of August, abandoned this goal, was considered unrealistic, not setting a new date, but calling the horizon between 2030 and 2035.
“We are in this deadline, we are forced to carry out the operation in accordance with the truth,” the minister said. “The 2015 law named the promise of 2012, and not much happened between 2015 and 2017. Thus, we have lost time, and therefore we will correct the course.
Currently, nuclear power accounts for more than 70% of electricity production in France, while in Europe it is less than 30%.
In early September, Prime Minister Edward Philippe just mentioned the “horizon of 2035,” and Matignon indicated that arbitration on the exact date would be determined in the EPP.
When Francois de Ruga was a candidate for the 2017 left bosses, he advocated a nuclear exit by 2040 and the goal of 100% renewable electricity in 2050.
“But I’m in the government called Emmanuel Macron (…) His program was 50/50, so we are in this context,” he said on Sunday.
“Our strategy does not stifle the French nuclear industry, but its future is not guaranteed,” he added, before mentioning Areva’s bankruptcy and the uncertainty surrounding the new EPR reactors in terms of “reliability, safety and competitiveness”.
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