Private investors need to see clear and consistent political support for nuclear energy as a way to tackle climate change if they are to play a role in raising the large amount of capital required for new-build projects, Stephen Vaughan, vice chair of Energy & Power at Rothschild & Co, said yesterday during World Nuclear Association’s Strategic eForum on Sustainable Finance. Specifically, taxonomies must back investment in nuclear power, he said. On the role of government in nuclear new build, Vaughan described EDF’s Sizewell C project in Suffolk, England. The proposed twin EPR development will be a replica of the French company’s Hinkley Point C, under construction in Somerset. This is primarily financed by EDF on its own balance sheet, but for Sizewell C the expectation is that EDF will not play a major role on the financing side. Instead the company will take a small minority stake. “The ambition for Sizewell C is to raise private financing and that means a big quantum of capital, in excess of GBP20 billon (USD28 billion). And of course that capital needs to be raised at low cost. We need the power output from Sizewell C to be competitive and we’re targeting a power price of GBP40-60/MWh,” Vaughan said, adding this requires “the deepest pools of capital to be available”. Such a project cannot afford to face any impediments, which means the taxonomy and the environmental, social and corporate (ESG) reference points need to be positive.
World Nuclear News 19th March 2021 read more »