Thursday, August 6, 2015

Is that really achievable?

France, a leader in the peaceful use of nuclear energy, has decided to take drastic steps.  I doubt these goals can be achieved.  But what surprises me, given how they've shown how easy it is to have nuclear power a major part of the country's energy portfolio, is how they're moving away from it.

Doesn't make sense.

French MPs vote to halve energy use, slash nuclear dependence

"Under the new law approved by the National Assembly, nuclear energy will provide only 50 percent of France's electricity by 2025, down from 75 percent currently.

Six months ahead of the global climate conference in Paris, the legislation also calls for a 30-percent drop in the use of fossil fuels by 2030 (compared with 2012 levels), and 40-percent drop in greenhouse gas emissions, compared with 1990.

Renewable energy will increasingly take up the slack -- accounting for 32 percent of France's energy mix by 2030, compared with 13.7 percent three years ago.

In a bid to meet the tough new targets, parliament must produce "carbon budgets" every five years, setting emission limits for each sector of the economy.

Polluters will also face major hikes in the "carbon tax", first introduced last year, which will go up in stages from 22 euros per tonne of CO2 in 2016 to 100 euros in 2030."

Two thoughts on this.

1.  Well, a carbon tax.  We'll see how that goes.

2.  What about Areva, the world's leading nuclear energy company?

The article partly addresses that:

"Only a month ago, Hollande's office said the government would spend "as much as necessary" to save troubled nuclear group Areva, which posted a record net loss of 4.8 billion euros ($5.2 billion) last year.

Areva has faced reduced global demand since the 2011 Fukushima disaster in Japan and been hit by cost overruns and construction difficulties in the building of new reactors in Flamanville, northwestern France and in Finland."
Areva definitely needs to get back on track.

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