With an overwhelming majority, MEPs reject the greenwashing of gas and nuclear power in crucial Committee vote

Posted on 14 June 2022

MEPs in the Environment and Economic Affairs committees have rejected the classification of fossil gas and nuclear power as environmentally sustainable under the EU Taxonomy - the EU’s “green” investment guidebook.
With an absolute majority, MEPs passed a first crucial step by voting down a list that would give a ‘green’ label to fossil gas and nuclear power despite their nefarious environmental impacts. 
“We applaud ECON and ENVI MEPs for choosing the right path to protect the credibility of the EU taxonomy! There is nothing sustainable about fossil fuels and nuclear waste and many investors and banks don’t want them labelled as “green”. Now the plenary must follow its two expert committees and reject what would otherwise be a huge and costly climate mistake: channelling billions into dirty projects, instead of funding the renewable energy transition we need,” said Sebastien Godinot, Senior Economist at WWF European Policy Office. 

Labeling fossil gas and nuclear power as green in the EU Taxonomy could take away billions of euros of investments from renewable energy and green technologies. With the war in Ukraine and the energy price crisis it is causing, labeling fossil gas and nuclear power as sustainable would be even more counterproductive. Gas has become a source of energy insecurity and geopolitical risk in Europe, and nuclear power is expensive, slow to build, and creates highly radioactive waste which we still do not know how to handle.

“The Ukraine war shows the EU cannot be fully independent until it controls its own energy. While imported gas creates dependence, renewables are our ‘freedom’ energy and the key to our independence. Labeling gas as a sustainable investment would lead Europe to use even more gas - meaning less energy security and higher bills for European citizens,” said Henry Eviston, Sustainable Finance Policy Officer at WWF European Policy Office.

The final vote is scheduled for the European Parliament plenary session in the first week of July. If MEPs fail to reject the greenwashed Taxonomy, it will pass into EU law. 

Ines Abbas 
Communications Officer
+32 488 99 27 65 1