Croatia Among EU Member States Calling for Stronger Shift to Nuclear Energy

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Photo: Davor Puklavec/PIXSELL
Photo: Davor Puklavec/PIXSELL

To win the fight for climate, we need nuclear energy. For all of us that is a key and reliable tool for a low carbon future, says the declaration titled Why Europeans Need Nuclear Energy, signed on behalf of Croatia by the Minister of Finance, Zdravko Marić, and the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, Tomislav Ćorić.

In addition to Croatia, the initiative was signed by Bulgaria, Czechia, Finland, France, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.

Nuclear energy is a clean, safe, independent, and competitive low-carbon source of energy which gives Europeans a chance to continue developing a strong value-added industry, creating thousands of skilled jobs, strengthening leadership in environmental protection, and ensuring strategic autonomy and energy self-sufficiency for Europe, the signatories said.

They cited the prediction made by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in its latest report that the goal of limiting global warming to up to 2°C this century would never be achieved unless greenhouse gas emissions were considerably reduced in the next eight years.

They also noted that the rise in energy prices has shown how important it is to reduce energy dependence on third countries as soon as possible. Problems with supply will become increasingly common, so Europe has no choice but to diversify its supply chain and make sure it does not increase its dependence on energy imports from outside Europe, they added.

Nuclear energy is safe and innovative and must be part of the solution

Decarbonization requires immediate and deep transitions in our production and consumer activities so that we make them less carbon-intensive. This implies mass electrification of our use and development of a low-carbon industry such as hydrogen, which also requires electricity production, the declaration says, stressing that nuclear energy must be part of the solution.

Although renewable energy sources play a key role in our energy transition, we also need other emissions-free energy sources to meet our needs at a sufficient and constant level. Nuclear energy is necessary. It already makes up half of the European carbon-free energy production, the declaration says.

The document notes that nuclear energy is a key affordable, stable, and independent source of energy and that this is so primarily because it protects European consumers from price volatility, given that now we are facing high prices of natural gas, and because it evidently contributes to the independence of our energy and electricity supplies.

This is affordable carbon-free energy that can deliver a large amount of competitive electricity without increasing our dependence on electricity supplies from third countries, the declaration says, adding that the European nuclear industry is a global leader and that its development could generate more than a million highly skilled jobs in Europe in the near future.

Increasing cooperation between the member states will lead to the construction of new modern reactors, such as small modular reactors, the document says.

It concludes by saying that nuclear energy should be treated equally as all other low-carbon energy sources and included in the European taxonomy framework before the end of this year and that there is no scientific evidence showing that nuclear energy is less climate-friendly than any other energy source included in taxonomy.

For more about politics in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.


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