News January 2016

31 January 2016

Hinkley

BRITAIN could withdraw financial support for the controversial £18bn nuclear power station at Hinkley Point, Somerset, if a similar plant being built by France’s EDF is not running by 2020, The Sunday Times can reveal. The condition, attached to a Treasury loan guarantee, raises fresh questions about the future of Britain’s first new atomic power plant in a generation. Last week EDF, which is 84% owned by the French state, postponed a board meeting in Paris to approve Hinkley Point, …

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30 January 2016

Hinkley

The spectacle of the disastrous attempts to build a new generation of nuclear reactor – the European Pressurised Reactors (EPRs) – and EDF’s apparent desire to carry on despite the increasing likelihood that the financial losses from this will destroy EDF as a going business (see my earlier blog posts on this) raise the question: If this is true, then why do they carry on with this apparent financial suicide? The answer can be analysed through something well known in …

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29 January 2016

Hinkley

EDF has told contractors at Hinkley Point to restart “unconstrained spending” in anticipation of the £18bn nuclear plant obtaining the final green light within days. The instructions to suppliers, reported by the industry magazine Building, comes despite EDF’s unwillingness to press the last investment button at a board meeting on Wednesday. The state-owned French group delayed the decision after last-minute pressure from its investors and unions over the cost of the scheme, but contractors in Somerset are being told to …

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28 January 2016

Hinkley

What if EDF says no to Hinkley Point? What if the French power generator, under pressure from its unions and potential lenders, decides it can’t finance the £18bn project, even with the Chinese chipping in? After all, the disgruntled French workers make a reasonable point. EDF’s last big foreign adventure, in Finland, is nine years behind schedule and massively over-budget, so why risk another expedition? EDF’s share price, remember, is down 85% since 2004: the company is in a weak …

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27 January 2016

Hinkley

George Osborne’s gamble on a nuclear future for British energy looked increasingly risky last night as the company set to build the first new reactor for a generation postponed its “final investment decision”. EDF had been expected to announce the go-ahead for the £18 billion Hinkley Point project today but the French state-owned company pulled back amid growing financial problems. It is reported to be seeking extra support from the French government amid a collapse in energy prices and the …

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26 January 2016

Hinkley

A French union has published a set of last-minute challenges to EDF over its plans to build an £18bn nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset, with just days to go before an expected final investment decision. People close to the deal said they expected the decision about whether the project would go ahead to happen at a board meeting on Wednesday. EDF declined to comment. The CFE-CGC energy union, which is represented on EDF’s board, has drawn up …

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New reactors would quadruple waste stockpile

The Stop Hinkley Campaign has published a new briefing on the huge impact a new reactor programme would have on the UK’s radioactive waste stockpile.

The proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear power station alone would produce radioactive wastes and spent fuel with a radioactivity inventory equal to roughly 80% of the radioactivity in all of the UK’s existing radioactive wastes put together.

The Stop Hinkley Campaign uses figures from Radioactive Waste Management (RWM) Ltd which show that the UK’s proposed 16GW new reactor programme will altogether …

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25 January 2016

Hinkley

A final investment decision on the UK’s first nuclear plant in a generation could be made within days with the project’s construction chief revealing that work could begin within weeks. Speaking exclusively to Construction News, Hinkley Point C’s construction site director Nigel Cann said he was “expecting in the next few weeks” both the final investment decision and, subsequently, the start of pre-construction work. Mr Cann said: “Very openly, we are planning to start when FID is announced, that is …

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24 January 2016

Hinkley

Sources in France say decision on whether to give the green light to controversial project would be made on Wednesday. The final decision on whether to build Britiain’s first nuclear power station in decades is set to be made by energy giant EDF this week, amid claims of “panic” among the French firm’s board over the viability of the £18bn project. Sources in France said the decision on whether to give the green light to its controversial plant at Hinkley …

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23 January 2016

EDF

Unions are to hold an urgent meeting with EDF Energy executives amid speculation that the company wants to cut more than 2,000 jobs in Britain. Concern among staff escalated yesterday after reports in France that EDF, the state-run giant that owns EDF Energy, is planning 6,000 redundancies worldwide. There are fears that the company is intending to cut up to 2,500 jobs in retail operations in Britain over the next few years through natural attrition. Eamon O’Hearn Large, national officer …

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