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Published on January 26th, 2018 | by James Ayre

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Austria Planning To Sue European Union Over Approval Of Hungary’s Nuclear Energy Expansion

January 26th, 2018 by  


The country of Austria is now planning to sue the European Commission for its approval of a nuclear energy expansion project in Hungary, government reps have revealed.

The announcement follows from the decision by the European Commission last year to grant permission to the government of Hungary for an expansion of the extant Paks nuclear energy facility.

Austria, of course, shares a border with Hungary, hence the interest in stopping an expansion of nuclear capacity there — the country would likely be affected in the event of an associated disaster.

The argument to be used by Austria in its lawsuit will revolve around the idea that nuclear energy expansion is not the way to deal with anthropogenic climate change, and that such an expansion is not in the “common interests” of the European Union.

It’s notable here, of course, that Austria does not possess any nuclear energy facilities.

“We in the government have agreed that there are sufficient reasons to sue (the Commission),” explained a spokesperson for Austria’s Sustainability Minister Elisabeth Koestinger. “EU assistance is only permissible when it is built on common interest. For us, nuclear energy is neither a sustainable form of energy supply, nor is it an answer to climate change.”

Reuters provides more: “EU state aid regulators approved last March Hungary’s plan to build two new reactors at its Paks nuclear site with the help of Russia’s Rosatom, saying Hungarian authorities had agreed to several measures to ensure fair competition.

“The two new blocs will double the plant’s nominal capacity of 2,000 megawatts (MW). Hungary aims to start construction on the reactors this year, with the first facility expected set for completion in 2025. The deadline for filing a suit to challenge the executive EU Commission’s decision at the European Court of Justice is February 25, the spokesman said.”

While the lawsuit is worth making note of, it is very unlikely that anything will come of it — the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg mostly (often enough anyways) just finds in favor of, and justifies, whatever it is that the European Commission has already decided.


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About the Author

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.



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