French president François Hollande has reaffirmed his campaign promise that France will reduce its reliance on nuclear power from 75% to 50% by 2025. Speaking at an environmental conference in Paris on 14 September, Hollande also confirmed that France’s oldest operating nuclear power plant, Fessenheim, would close by the end of 2016.

Hollande told the conference that renewables have ‘huge potential’ and that he ‘regretted’ the delay in French diversification into renewable energy. He promised a strategy based on energy efficiency and renewables to achieve an energy transition in France.

The two-unit Fessenheim nuclear power plant, which is located close to France’s borders with both Germany and Switzerland, will close by the end of 2016, Hollande pledged. He said that successful decommissioning of the site would become and ‘example’ of French decommissioning expertise, offering further international opportunities for the French nuclear industry.