Horizon Nuclear Power and Hitachi refused to qualify media reports claiming Hitachi has decided to halt further work on the £20 billion nuclear power plant. Campaigners for a second referendum on Brexit claim industry insiders have told them the decision is a consequence both of the economic uncertainty caused by Brexit and by the way in which Brexit has destroyed capacity in British government – something which the Government’s “blindfold Brexit” deal would make a permanent fixture as rows and negotiations and renegotiations stretch into the decades to come. Andrew Adonis, former chair of the National Infrastructure Commission and a leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said: “As chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, I saw at first-hand how reliant on new nuclear this Government’s plans for green, secure energy were. Hitachi’s decision – the result of a civil service that is distracted by Brexit, a complete lack of political leadership and global investor nervousness – leaves that strategy in tatters.
North Wales Chronicle 13th Jan 2019 read more »
The company behind the Wylfa Newydd nuclear power plant is more likely to put it on hold rather than scrap it completely, an economic adviser claims. Hitachi is expected to announce this week that it will suspend all work on the £20bn plant on Anglesey. Questions have been raised about what it means for the north Wales economy. Dr Edward Jones, who teaches economics at Bangor University and advises the North Wales Growth Bid, doubts Hitachi will walk away after investing £2bn. Hitachi’s UK subsidiary company, Horizon Nuclear Power, has been investing money in apprenticeships and training centres in north Wales, including at the Llandrillo Menai college group and Bangor University. Robat Idris, from the anti-nuclear campaign group People Against Wylfa B (PAWB), told BBC Radio Wales that planning for the North Wales Growth Deal has been based on the premise that Wylfa Newydd would go ahead.
BBC 15th Jan 2019 read more »
Hitachi may cancel its plans for a $20.5 billion nuclear power project in Wales, according to several media reports from the UK and Japan. The Japanese company is expected to determine the fate of the project at a board meeting this week. The Guardian newspaper was among those that in recent days reported an impasse in talks among Hitachi, UK officials, and the Japanese government regarding financing for the plant would likely lead to a cancellation. Hitachi already has spent about $2.6 billion on the project. The Nikkei Asian Review on Jan. 11 reported that Hitachi’s board this week would likely move to suspend all work on the Wylfa Newydd plant. The power station on Anglesey, an island on the north coast of Wales, was first proposed in 2009 as a 3,000-MW plant with two advanced boiling water reactors. Horizon Nuclear Power, a joint venture of E.ON and RWE, was behind the project. Hitachi bought the venture in 2012.
Power Mag 13th Jan 2019 read more »
Japanese firm Hitachi is set to cancel a £16 billion nuclear power station in Wales, leaving the long-term future of Britain’s energy sector in jeopardy. Hitachi’s withdrawal would also mark the collapse of the energy policy adopted in 2013 by the Coalition government. “Since then much has changed, and the assumptions which underpinned the old policy now look laughably wrong”, says the Financial Times. “The costs of all forms of energy (apart from nuclear) have fallen dramatically and there is no shortage of supply. Electricity demand is down thanks to efficiency gains and new technology. The contract for the first new nuclear station being built at Hinkley Point in Somerset, which enjoys a guaranteed index-linked price for 35 years from the moment the plant is commissioned, looks exorbitant” says the paper. The BBC says “the latest developments are likely to force the government to sweeten future nuclear plant deals for potential investors”. Energy Secretary Greg Clark has already suggested that regulated asset base (RAB) funding could be used for nuclear projects in future. Prof Paul Dorfman, of the Energy Institute at University College London, told the BBC that nuclear power plants could not be built without “vast” public subsidies and that RAB funding was merely “a fiscally dextrous form of subsidy. It really looks as if the government are flailing. It’s a last desperate leap in the dark,” he said.
The Week 15th Jan 2019 read more »