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What is the status of EU Taxonomy under the current climate?

According to the European Commission website, The EU taxonomy is a classification system, establishing a list of environmentally sustainable economic activities.[1]. It is aimed at providing entrepreneurs and regulators with definitions of  which economic activities can be considered environmentally sustainable[2]. In other words, the taxonomy should be a system which makes it possible to clarify which activities may be qualified as green or sustainable in order to support environmental protection by proper direction of possible investments on the market (private or using public funds) and to prevent greenwashing. The taxonomy is based on Regulation (EU) 2020/852 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 June 2020. For the effective enforcement of the regulation, the Commission is required to provide the true list of environmentally sustainable activities for particular sectors through delegated acts.

The Taxonomy Regulation was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 22 June 2020 and entered into force on 12 July 2020. A first, a delegated act on sustainable activities for climate change adaptation and mitigation objectives was published in the Official Journal on 9 December 2021, and has been in force since January 2022[3]. The first act covered most sectors, including manufacturing of RET, batteries, aluminum, iron and steel, electricity generation using photovoltaic technology, solar and wind power, water supply, waste management and transport, as well as construction of buildings.

On March 2022, after a long period of pre-consultation, the Commission adopted the delegated act including, under strict conditions, specific nuclear and gas energy activities on the list of economic activities covered by the EU taxonomy[4]. However, the act was perceived as controversial, since the criteria provided were contrary to the recommendations of the Platform on Sustainable Finance, the Comission’s own expert group[5].  The EU Taxonomy Complementary Climate Delegated Act on specific gas and nuclear activities is currently being scrutinized by the co-legislators and is planned to be voted upon in the July 2022 EU Parliamentary Session[6].


[1] https://ec.europa.eu/info/business-economy-euro/banking-and-finance/sustainable-finance/eu-taxonomy-sustainable-activities_en#what

[2] Ibidem

[3] Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2021/2139 of 4 June 2021, OJ L 442/1

[4] https://ec.europa.eu/info/publications/220202-sustainable-finance-taxonomy-complementary-climate-delegated-act_en

[5] https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/default/files/business_economy_euro/banking_and_finance/documents/220121-sustainable-finance-platform-response-taxonomy-complementary-delegated-act_en.pdf ;

[6] https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-9-2022-001071-ASW_EN.pdf