Zero-Carbon Energy Development Booming In France

Country Overview

The French Republic (France) is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Monaco, Spain, Mediterranean Sea, English Channel, and the Celtic Sea. The population of France is approximately 64.76 million people.

In 2021, France’s economy was ranked 7th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP). The country’s economy is dependent on the export of planes, helicopters, spacecraft, packaged medicaments, cars, motor vehicle parts, wine, beauty products, and perfumes.

Environmental Policies

In 2009, France as a member of the European Union (EU) committed to the Renewable Energy Directive,” which required each country to use renewable energy for 20% of its total energy needs by 2020 and 27% by 2030.

In 2016, France as a member of the EU signed the “Paris Climate Agreement. The EU committed to a 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emission by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, 100% of the people in France had access to electricity. In 2022, utilities used oil (34.7%) nuclear power (31.6%), natural gas (16.5%), renewable energy (14.6%), and coal (2.6%) to generate electricity in France. Hydropower, wind, and solar are the dominant types of renewable energy used to generate electricity in France.

Recent zero-carbon energy projects in France include:

  • 25,000 MW Nuclear Power Projects –French utility, EDF is continuing work to build the first of six new nuclear power plants in France. The total capacity of the six new nuclear power plants is 25,000 MW. The first two nuclear power plant are forecast to be commissioned by 2035.
  • 1,000 MW Solar + Energy Storage Project – French utility, Engie is continuing work on the Horizeo solar plus energy storage project at a site approximately 300 miles southwest of the nation’s capital, Paris. The project is forecast to be commissioned in 2026.
  • 498 MW Offshore Wind Project – Renewable energy company, Éolien Maritime France is continuing work on the Fécamp Offshore wind project, which is located approximately 9 miles off the northwest coast of France. The project is forecast to be commissioned by year-end 2023.
  • 496 MW Offshore Wind Project – In July 2023, French power company, Iberdrola commissioned the Saint-Brieuc Bay wind project, which is located approximately 8 miles off the northwest coast of France.
  • 448 MW Offshore Wind Project – Canadian energy company, Enbridge is continuing work on the Courseulles-sur-Mer wind project, which is located approximately 10 miles off the northwest coast of France. The project is forecast to be commissioned by year-end 2024.
  • 30 MW Floating Offshore Wind Project – French renewable energy company, Quadran Energies Marines is continuing work on the EOLMED floating offshore wind pilot project, which is located in the Mediterranean Sea, off the coast of Gruissan, France. The project is forecast to be completed by July 2024.
  • 25 MW Floating Solar Project – Spanish renewable energy company, Iberdrola is continuing work on a floating solar project at a site approximately 270 miles east of Paris. The project is forecast to be commissioned by October 2026.
  • 20 MW Floating Solar Project – EDF is continuing work on a floating solar project at a hydroelectric plant in southeastern France. The project is scheduled to be commissioned by year-end 2023.
  • 12 MW Solar Project – EDF is continuing work on a solar project in south-central France. The project is forecast to be commissioned by June 2023.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the crude oil and natural gas prices increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

Countries in the EU now realize the importance of energy independence. In 2021, Germany used fossil fuels to generate 45.6 % of the nation’s electricity. In 2021, Germany imported 55% of its natural gas and 35% of its oil from Russia.

On August 30, 2022, Russian energy company, Gazprom halted natural gas exports to Germany. On October 13, 2022, France began transporting natural gas to Germany, capable of producing 31,000 MW hours per day of electricity. France is also exporting zero-carbon electricity to other neighboring EU countries.

France’s development of new zero-carbon power plants is transforming the country into a major exporter of fossil-free fueled electricity to other EU countries. Zero-Carbon energy development is now booming in France

 Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”

www.jackkerfoot.com

 

Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio, podcast, and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on a diverse range of energy issues.

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