The head of nuclear at one of Britain’s leading engineering companies says the sector will not have the engineering capacity to develop a new generation of nuclear power plants, if the government fails to commit to a clear policy strategy. The country hasn’t built a nuclear power plant in decades and government inaction has presided over a failure to train new engineers, while experienced engineers gradually retire. Alistair Smith, nuclear development director at Costain told Financial Times, “It’s 20 years since we built a nuclear power station. These people are not just sitting around waiting to start again. We’ve just got Hinkley Point C started and resources on that project are already starting to look scarce.” About 1,800 people are already employed at Hinkley and about 25,000 jobs are expected to be created by the project over the next decade. Mr Smith said there were a limited number of UK contractors with the capabilities to deliver projects as big and complex as nuclear power stations and companies needed to see more clarity before decisions are made on investing in the necessary skills.
Power Engineering International 14th Aug 2017 read more »