EU wakes up to energy security

On July 6, the European Parliament, one of the most liberal legislatures on the planet, voted to classify certain nuclear and natural gas projects as environmentally sustainable. The move brings these projects into line with previous European Union legislation that withheld government support for projects designated as non-sustainable. This legislation has contributed to disproportionate investment in unreliable renewable energy infrastructure in the EU. When these failed, Russian natural gas supplied by Russian infrastructure served as a backup.

Although the European Parliament’s announcement only paid lip service to the EU’s obligations under the Paris agreements and its determination to achieve net zero carbon emissions, it represents a sea change in the posture Europe’s energy sector, which now seems to recognize that progress towards a cleaner environment will be a Pyrrhic victory if it comes at the cost of the continent’s security and prosperity.

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