France has always wanted the rest of us to pay its astronomical nuclear decommissioning bill so a 'CEP' was always going to be on the table to join the CAP at some stage ... Why would the fervent anti-nukes allow France the opportunity to enshrine the nuclear option in an EU charter? (as they surely will - an absolute red line for them)Well France has made the first strike, cannily rallying the UK and others to her flag. (Why exactly the Grauniad fingers Romania is anyone's guess: their fault, I suppose, for being pushed out in front by the French.) They call for
"new EU financing mechanisms for nuclear as a low carbon technology, and research and innovation initiatives to deal with the costly and unresolved issues of nuclear waste and decommissioning. New state aid guidelines are also needed, it says, and these should be based on past EU decisions, including the approval of the UK’s planned Hinkley Point C nuclear plant in Somerset. “It is vital that the forthcoming communication on an Energy Union reaffirms the important role that nuclear power ... can potentially play in Europe”Note the other countries involved: Czech Republic, Lithuania, Slovenia and Slovakia. In other words, this isn't just a nuclear hunting party, its members include the core of the anti-Russian eastern grouping (with which the UK is often allied in matters EU) - another key strand we identified last week.
"Energy Union" obviously means very different things to different people. I'm looking forward to a ten-nation riposte along greenish, anti entente-cordiale-nucléaire lines. Britain and France and Poland and Czechoslovakia against, errrr, Germany and Italy and Austria ... this promises to be epic. Energy Union in our lifetime? Pardon me if I'm skeptical.