To many, France’s ongoing elections are the latest showdown between the liberal world order and a new brand of right-wing populism. That narrative follows a similar path in energy. France’s elections are pitting nuclear versus renewables, closed markets versus open, and disruption versus protectionism. France is going through a quite radical revaluation of its electricity mix. It gets about 75 percent of its electricity from nuclear. However, in 2015, President François Holland set a policy that would phase out aging nuclear plants, and reduce nuclear generation to 50 percent by 2025. He wants to fill in the gap with more renewables and efficiency. Now the two presidential candidates — Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen — are sparring over what to do with nuclear. It’s part of a broader debate over nationalizing the energy giant EDF, expanding or limiting energy trading with the E.U., and mixing variable renewables with a really high nuclear grid.
Green tech 27th April 2017 read more »
[Machine Translation] Alert to La Hague. The unions CGT-FO-Unsa-CFDT and local elected representatives deplored a “decrease” in safety within the Areva factory. Located at the tip of Cotentin, near Cherbourg in the English Channel, it is the largest unit of reprocessing and vitrification of radioactive waste in the world. Libération had access to the La Hague site last month for a rare report. This deterioration in security would be linked to the “serious financial situation” of the group. In fact, the Local Information Commission (CLI) of the site, which includes local elected representatives, trade unionists and environmental associations, adopted a motion on Thursday calling on the French nuclear safety authority (ASN) to “increase vigilance” The “reduction in the safety of installations”.
Liberation 27th April 2017 read more »