French Minister Sticking to Planned Nuclear Power Cuts
French Minister Sticking to Planned Nuclear Power Cuts

French Minister Sticking to Planned Nuclear Power Cuts

French Minister Sticking to Planned Nuclear Power Cuts

France should define a clear roadmap to fulfill its pledge to cut the share of nuclear power in its electricity generation to 50% by 2025, French ecology minister said in an interview in the Sunday edition of regional daily Ouest-France.
A 2015 law requires France to reduce within eight years the share of atomic power generation to 50% from over 75% currently and include more renewable wind and solar generation, Reuters reported.
Nicolas Hulot also said in a radio interview that for France to meet that target, it might have to shut down up to 17 of its 58 nuclear reactors operated by state-controlled utility EDF.
His comments drew questions from observers on how nuclear-dependent France, a net power exporter in Europe, could possibly shut down 17 reactors and continue to guarantee adequate power supply.
Hulot clarified that he did not say 17 reactors must close, but that if the 2015 law were respected, the reactors would have to close.
Newly-elected French President Emmanuel Macron has maintained the target of cutting French nuclear production by 2025.
"We have to define realistic and possible scenarios, otherwise it will be brutal," Hulot said.
Hulot, an environmental campaigner who was appointed ecology minister by Macron, said that since the 2015 law was passed, little has been done and there was no clear strategy on how France would meet the 50% target.
"I want to engage in planned course of action, especially on a social and economic level," Hulot said. "Nuclear power plants cannot be closed without taking into account the reality of jobs. We must model scenarios and build a roadmap."
The closure of nuclear plants is a hot-button issue in France with trade unions and some political parties saying the plan would cripple the French nuclear sector.
Hulot also said state-controlled utility EDF would have to accelerate its development of renewable energies.
"The French authorities could stimulate the development of these energies by implementing tax incentives, easing regulatory processes and cutting the length of potential litigations," he said.


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