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Newsline: EU climate diplomacy deal on hold

European Union countries failed to adopt conclusions on climate diplomacy that had been planned for Monday, owing to a deepening spat over the role of nuclear energy in the green transition, EU officials said. The upset is the latest development in a dispute between France and other countries who want more EU policies to promote nuclear energy’s contribution to cutting CO2 emissions, and those like Germany and Spain who warn this risks distracting from efforts to massively expand renewable energy. The debate – which focuses on hydrogen produced from nuclear or renewable energy – has already delayed negotiations on new EU renewable energy targets and threatened a multi-billion-euro hydrogen pipeline. Some EU officials fear it could spill into other green energy policies, potentially delaying laws needed to meet EU climate targets. “There are outstanding obstacles, but they will be resolved,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said of the climate conclusions on Monday, without specifying what the obstacles were. (https://neuters.de/world/europe/eu-climate-diplomacy-deal-hold-nuclear-dispute-deepens-2023-02-20/) The conclusions would set out the EU’s diplomatic priorities ahead this year’s U.N. climate summit. Speaking after a meeting of EU countries’ foreign ministers, who had planned to approve the conclusions, Borrell said he expected countries to give written approval to a final text within days. EU officials told Reuters the majority of the text had been approved – including plans for the EU to rally support for a global pledge to phase out fossil fuels ahead of the November U.N. climate summit.

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