European renewables lobby sues commission over Finnish nuke

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Greenpeace Finland said in a statement Monday that Brussels-based lobby the European Renewable Energies Federation had brought an action before the European Court of Justice challenging the European commission's September 2007 declaration that a 570-million-euro guarantee granted by Coface, a privatised company that continues to act in its eponymous role as the French government's export guarantee agency, to Finnish utility Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) did not constitute illegal state aid.

A consortium comprising France's Areva and Germany's Siemens is currently building a nuclear power station for TVO in Olkiluoto.

"The decision of the defendant (European commission) affects the legal position of the claimant and the industry it represents, in a manner which is both definite and immediate, by restricting the rights of the independent power producers to have a level playing field when entering the energy market, and to be able to compete on it," the action said.

"Access to this market is now extremely restricted due to the defendant's decision that the French Coface publicly funded export guarantee does not constitute state aid for the French public company Areva."

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