Britain is looking at funding options for the 17-18 billion pound ($22-$23 billion) Sizewell C nuclear plant that France’s EDF EDF.PA is scheduled to build in eastern England, a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Thursday. “The government is looking at options to invest in Sizewell, nuclear energy has a key role in meeting our net zero commitments,” Johnson’s spokesman told journalists. “We regularly engage with all developers on their projects and are considering a range of financing solutions.”
Reuters 17th Sept 2020 read more »
The government has said it is exploring financing options for Sizewell C after plans were scrapped for a nuclear power station in Wales. The government has now revealed it is looking at “a range of financing solutions” to ensure the power station can be built. Among the options being considered is the government taking a stake in the station. A government spokesperson said: “Nuclear energy has a key role to play in meeting our net zero commitments. “We regularly engage with all developers on their projects and are considering a range of financing solutions.”
East Anglian Daily Times 17th Sept 2020 read more »
In the United Kingdom, the renewal of nuclear power is at an impasse. After Toshiba, Hitachi abandons its plan for a nuclear power plant. EDF is one of the last players in the running.
Le Monde 17th Sept 2020 read more »
The decision by Japanese company Hitachi to pull out of plans to build a new nuclear power station in Wales “may accelerate government approval of a new station at Sizewell C” in Suffolk, BBC News reported, citing “government and industry sources”. The BBC said the government taking a stake in the project to build two Generation III EPR units at Sizewell is one option being considered as it looks to “replace China’s CGN [China General Nuclear] as an investor”. France’s EDF and CGN are 80% and 20% shareholders in the Sizewell C project. The cost of the project has been estimated at £18bn, although this has not been confirmed by either EDF or CGN. After Sizewell C, CGN was set to build it’s a single HPR1000, or Hualong One, reactor design at Bradwell in Essex, but BBC News cited sources saying this idea “‘looks dead’, given revived security concerns and deteriorating diplomatic relations” between London and Beijing. The HPR1000 is a China-designed 1,100-MW Generation III pressurised water reactor which incorporates elements of China’s ACP1000 and ACPR1000+ reactor designs.
The Nucnet 17th Sept 2020 read more »
Major union Unite has called on the government to approve plans for Sizewell C nuclear power station on the Suffolk coast – arguing that 10,000 jobs are “in the balance” over the project. The union is backing the Sizewell C Consortium of major contractors, which has said that the failure to build EDF’s proposed plant could cost the construction industry thousands of jobs.
East Anglian Daily Times 18th Sept 2020 read more »
Paul Dorfman: We need to secure clean, safe, affordable, sustainable, low-carbon electricity to power industry, transport, homes, hospitals and businesses. The good news is we can achieve this through a set of technically and economically viable renewable options and, some argue, nuclear power. Yet, of the six designated sites for new a UK nuclear plant, three have been abandoned, two are in doubt, and only Hinkley Point C is under construction, albeit subject to escalating costs, time-slippage, and security concerns about Chinese involvement. That Hitachi has just run out of patience and decided to quit the UK nuclear new-build stage is an obvious blow. But does it signal a fundamental change in our energy policy, or has Hitachi’s new nuclear project been put to the sword in order to plunge on with EDF’s plans for two EPR reactors at Sizewell C? Well, if there’s such a thing as a coherent evidence-base, the market is clear that new large nuclear plants are a thing of the past. Standard and Poor’s, the global credit-rating agency, sees “little economic rationale for new nuclear build in the US or Western Europe, owing to massive cost escalations and renewables’ cost competitiveness, which should lead to a material decline in nuclear generation in those countries by 2040.” Meanwhile, Lazard, the world’s leading financial advisory and asset management firm, says the cost of large-scale wind and solar is a fraction of the cost of new nuclear, even if the cost of decommissioning or the ongoing maintenance for nuclear is excluded. Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows market prices for renewables broadly similar to Lazard’s. So the last chance saloon for new UK nuclear now seems to be the fiscally dexterous Regulated Asset Base scheme, or RAB. However, under RAB, the plan is for the very great financial burden of nuclear construction risk to be passed on to hard-pressed UK consumers and taxpayers in the form of a blank cheque. Not a happy prospect, politically. And experience with the US Early Cost Recovery (ECR) version of RAB is not encouraging. Despite expenditure exceeding $20bn (£15.4bn), no new US nuclear plant has entered into service, and US electricity customers have been left with a $10bn (£7.7bn) debt for a cancelled nuclear plant and another $13.5bn (£10.4bn) in cost over-runs. Meanwhile, renewables are an exponentially growing economic sector with huge potential for job creation alongside electricity grid up-grade, energy efficiency and management, new storage technology, and market innovation from supply to service provision. It’s time to get real. Yes, we can modernise our electricity system, and resolve the real energy trilemma – it’s an economic, technological and political win-win.
Telegraph 18th Sept 2020 read more »