Consultazione pubblica sul Programma EURATOM

[contributo del Comitato Nucleare e Ragione]

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Abbiamo partecipato alla public stakeholder consultation on the Euratom Research and Training Programme.

Potrete consultare per intero il nostro contributo qui: https://ec.europa.eu/research/consultations/euratom_rt_programme/consultation_en.htm appena verrà reso disponibile.
Nel frattempo, riportiamo qui di seguito la parte saliente:

Nuclear energy is a young technology, still in its first innovation cycle. It presents, thanks to expected scientific and technical advances in the 21st century, a great potential for future technological breakthroughs, both with regards to its applications (electricity, heat, desalinization), and in new concepts of reactors and fuel systems.

The EU will need nuclear energy to meet its climate objectives, insure its energy independence and maintain competitive electricity prices.

Low-carbon nuclear energy is already providing its essential contribution as a reliable base-load source of electricity. With an adequate and consistent political backing, nuclear energy could substitute all fossil fuels in electricity generation, as being used as a support of the advantages expected from energy efficiency, and renewable development.

Future nuclear reactors will be more competitive and flexible: they will operate in electrical grids together with a significant share of intermittent renewables. They will show advances in intrinsic safety, together with materials and waste management.

To date, half of the EU countries rely on nuclear energy for their energy future, and all of them have nuclear research assets that can make the EU a worldwide leader in nuclear infrastructures of the future, and make sure it achieves its climate objectives. They will need the support of the European institutions to define a common ambition and coordinate their efforts.

The European Commission must fully implement Article 40 of EURATOM Treaty. It must set production and investment targets for nuclear energy in line with the objectives of the Union’s energy policy.

New governance practices must be negotiated with countries that do not wish to use nuclear energy in their future energy mix (e.g. Germany and Austria) so they do not block initiatives around the development of nuclear energy. Countries wishing to use nuclear power should be able to use the provisions of the EURATOM Treaty for the implementation of common objectives.

The EU must:

  • Multiply by at least 3 the budgets allocated to EURATOM to relaunch and revamp nuclear research, development and construction of new fission nuclear reactor concepts. This should include funding in required technology enablers (such as materials) and the experimental means necessary for their development.
  • Strongly promote Gen. IV in order to achieve significant construction milestones within next five years, and a productive implementation of those advanced nuclear systems in overall European electricity grid within a decade.
  • Invest in the construction of one or more European prototypes or demonstrators.
  • Promote and support initiatives to increase nuclear safety culture among EU populations.
  • Promote research on risks and benefits of ionizing radiation, and communication to general public of the outcome, in particular about real risk and possible benefits related to exposure to low and very low levels.
  • Promote review of guidelines for industry, environmental protection, healthcare, radioprotection, etc. in conformity of the results of the more updated research concerning ionizing radiation effects.
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