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France 'not doing enough' to meet its energy and climate targets: IEA


Efficiency, renewables, nuclear need investment

Ageing hydro masks renewables' contribution

Financing clarity needed for post-2030 plan

France is not acting fast enough to meet its energy and climate targets, the International Energy Agency said in a policy review report Nov. 30.

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In particular the country's electricity market needed a clearer policy strategy, it said.

"By investing much more in energy efficiency, renewable energy and nuclear power, France can accelerate progress on its key energy and climate goals," said IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol, launching the report in Paris alongside France's Minister for the Ecological Transition, Barbara Pompili.

"This review comes in a crucial time frame, in particular to anticipate the French multi-annual Plan review preparation and the energy and climate programming act discussion in 2023," said Pompili.

Half of France's renewables output came from hydro plants built decades ago, the report said, noting the country needed "more sustained and consistent policies" to accelerate new additions of solar and wind capacity.

France also needed to decide on the future of its ageing nuclear fleet, which in 2019 accounted for 71% of electricity production.

A clear post-2030 generation plan with related financing mechanisms were needed to send a signal to investors, "especially on nuclear energy," the IEA said.

Finally, France "still relies on oil and gas for two-thirds of its energy consumption. The government should foster the shift to low-carbon fuels and support the adaptation of France's oil and gas infrastructure, including by engaging in international and European cooperation on fuels such as hydrogen," the IEA said.