Eurosif statement on risks arising from inclusion of natural gas & nuclear energy in the EU Taxonomy
The debate on the inclusion of natural gas and nuclear energy in the EU Taxonomy has intensified. It is not clear what the advantages of including these are. However, the risks of including these energy sources for the credibility of the EU sustainable finance agenda are significant. It will weaken the perception of the EU’s ambitions vis-à-vis international partners.
Eurosif key messages are :
- The EU Taxonomy is a list of economic activities that qualify as sustainable because they align with certain environmental objectives according to scientific criteria. It does not prohibit investors from investing in economic sectors not deemed sustainable in any way.
- The EU Taxonomy does not limit Member States’ strategic choices regarding future energy mix. The absence of natural gas and nuclear energy from the EU Taxonomy has not prevented these plans.
- Including natural gas and/or nuclear energy would fundamentally change the nature of the EU Taxonomy, from a “green” to a “transition” list of activities. Therefore, these activities should not be treated as ‘sustainable’ in the EU Taxonomy that is meant to be science-based.
- Including natural gas and nuclear energy brings little benefit, but carries profound risks for the credibility of the EU Sustainable Finance agenda more broadly.
- It is likely to confuse and undermine the confidence of private investors and their advisers as constituting a credible list of sustainable business activities.
- It will set the precedent for other sectors to seek less stringent, less science-based treatment under the EU Taxonomy, in the climate delegated act as well as the further four environmental objectives expected early next year.
- Inclusion of natural gas and nuclear energy will result in less transparency and a greater risk of mis selling, undermining confidence in sustainable investment fund disclosures. Any inclusion of natural gas and nuclear energy would require rethinking the SFDR reporting.
- Regardless of the decision taken on natural gas and nuclear energy, Member States should approve the Climate Mitigation & Adaptation delegated act.
Read Eurosif statement here : 2021-11-24 - Eurosif Statement - Taxonomy Gas-Nuclear
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