Nuclear power: Wylfa and Sizewell C ‘fate is aligned’. The fate of two nuclear power stations worth a combined £30bn could be settled at the same time, a director of the firm behind the Wylfa Newydd project has claimed. Speaking to CN, Leon Flexman, director of Hitachi subsidiary Horizon Nuclear Power, said the £16bn Wylfa project and £14bn Sizewell C nuclear facility’s futures rested on the government accepting the regulated asset base model (RAB) to fund nuclear new-build projects. RAB requires developers to spend less upfront, instead raising cash through consumer bills. EDF has said it is in favour of using the RAB model for Sizewell. Work on Wylfa Newydd power station was suspended in January 2019 after developer Hitachi experienced issues with funding, having already put £2bn into the project. EDF will submit a development consent order for Sizewell C in Suffolk this year and hopes to begin construction on the power station in 2021, but a decision has yet to be made on how it will be funded. When asked whether the fate of Wylfa was aligned with that of Sizewell C, Flexman said: “Yes, I think so. Sizewell C requires the regulated asset base model to proceed. And I think we are in the same boat.” Flexman added that Hitachi’s original intention to finance Wylfa Newydd on a merchant basis had not worked because “private sector investors weren’t able to put the capital in that was needed without the same sort of strategic goal that nation states would have”. He contrasted this with Hinkley Point C, financed mainly by EDF and China General Nuclear Power Group, which are backed by the French and Chinese states respectively. “That way of doing it, while it gets that first nuclear power station up and running, is not a model that we want to repeat,” he added.
Construction News 7th Feb 2020 read more »