Nuclear will join the EU’s green taxonomy next year, potentially easing investor concerns about whether it should be considered environmentally friendly. The move could in turn open new funding sources for European nuclear operators, such as Electricité de France SA, or EDF, and Fortum Oyj, as the industry faces up to €550 billion of investment needs through 2050, based on EU forecasts.
Admission to the EU taxonomy could let European nuclear developers sell green bonds to help fund new plants, which was previously unheard of in the region, said Petroleka.
Investors are in particular concerned with reputational risk and possible accusations of “greenwashing” from environmental campaigners.
Opposition to nuclear remains strong in countries such as Germany, Austria and Luxembourg, which all opposed adding nuclear to the taxonomy. Germany is shutting its last reactors at the end of this year. Some energy experts and environmental groups are also against the change.