Germany criticises EU gas labelling plan

German ministers have criticized EU plans to label natural gas and nuclear energy as a sustainable investment as part of the EU Commission’s draft taxonomy for green labeling investments in energy.

The draft says nuclear plants should be considered “sustainable” if the host country can ensure they cause “no significant harm” to the environment. Natural gas can also earn the green label provided criteria such as a carbon dioxide emission level of 270g of CO2 per kilowatt generated are met.

Germany Economy and Climate Protection Minister Robert Habeck and Environment Minister Steffi Lemke say Berlin could not back the proposed scheme. Habeck says the Commission proposal “waters down the good label for sustainability” and that “greenwashing” may not be accepted by investors. Environment Minister Lemke said that nuclear energy “cannot be sustainable.”

Reuters has reported that coalition partners have agreed to abstain in a vote when EU leaders will have their final say at a summit later this year.