Greenpeace issued a warning that France and the UK were calling for nuclear power projects to be included in the Kyoto protocol's "clean development mechanism" (CDM), under which industrialised countries will be able to claim greenhouse gas emissions credits if they help developing countries to cut emissions.
The group said the CDM risked becoming "a new subsidy for the nuclear industry" if nuclear was not excluded. "The CDM is meant to promote sustainable energy in developing countries, not create more radioactive waste," it claimed.
European nuclear industry association Foratom hit back, calling for the CDM to be implemented "without limits" on technologies that could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. "All forms of energy are necessary for global sustainable development," the group said.
A source at the EU meeting confirmed that the UK and France were pushing informally to allow nuclear projects under the CDM, although there has been "no [formal] clear position" from either. The source said most other member states and the European Commission wanted to exclude nuclear, but that the issue would only be resolved at a senior political level, possibly when environment ministers meet later this month.
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