G7, Energy and Competition

By April 14, 2007Energy, Global Warming

Europe and North America’s finance ministers (secretaries), recognizing that energy security is necessary for economic growth and fiscal stability, take a stand.

Finance chiefs from the G7 industrialized countries have endorsed nuclear energy, an increasingly attractive power source as governments confront global warming and over-dependence on fossil fuels.

The Group of Seven, following a meeting here Friday, described energy diversification as an important priority for both rich and poor nations.

“Diversification can include advanced energy technologies such as renewable, nuclear and clean coal,” said the ministers and central bank governors from Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States.

The group at previous meetings had been unable to agree on a text citing nuclear power, notably in the face of opposition from Germany.

But a steady rise in oil prices, from less than 30 dollars a barrel in April 2003 to nearly 80 dollars last year, as well as increased energy nationalism in producers such as Russia, Venezuela and Iran have managed to change minds.

UPDATE (7:40 p.m.): Always nice when actions comport with policy:

The five-year, $1.8 billion effort to restart the dormant Unit 1 reactor at Browns Ferry is nearly complete, the Tennessee Valley Authority said Thursday, and a key readiness inspection by federal regulators is expected by month’s end.

TVA reported that it is on schedule to complete “maintenance and testing of the final systems needed to restart Unit 1 safely in May.”