This week Chancellor George Osborne told Parliament that the power from the planned Hinkley C nuclear plant would be cheaper than onshore wind, writes Doug Parr. That could be true on Planet Zog – but here on Earth the reverse is the case. Exactly what are Osborne and his Treasury mandarins smoking? There is an increased air of unreality about what is going on in UK Government on energy policy, and what is visible to the rest of the real world. Nowhere is this clearer than their continued bullishness on the proposed Hinkley Point nuclear power station. On the one hand, earlier today the Financial Times joined environmental campaigners in saying that the project should be abandoned. That’s become almost normal, given that the energy minister who last gave the go ahead to new nuclear power in the UK (David Howell, now Lord Howell) has withdrawn his support. But the reason the Financial Times offers for its view is interesting, as they argue that “the cost of alternative low carbon sources, such as solar, and better battery technology, is falling fast.” The UK’s Chancellor George Osborne in stark contrast claimed that the country’s first new nuclear power station is the cheapest form of low-carbon generation available – cheaper even than onshore wind.