In 2006, Tony Blair told Britain’s biggest business lobby that the country needed a new generation of nuclear reactors or risked becoming dependent on imported fossil fuels while missing commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. “If we don’t take these long-term decisions now, we will be committing a serious dereliction of our duty to the future of the country,” the then prime minister said in a speech at Confederation of British Industry’s annual dinner. Almost 13 years later, just one plant is under construction — the Hinkley Point project being built by France’s state power company in southwest England. There’s increasing doubt any more reactors will follow. Reports on Friday said Japan’s Hitachi Ltd. has decided to halt work on the Wylfa project in North Wales. That’s follows Toshiba Corp.’s decision in November to abandon a plant in northwest England. “The U.K. nuclear renaissance is a zombie,” said Laurent Segalen, a managing partner at Megawatt-X in London, who advises on financing wind and solar projects. The unraveling of Blair’s energy blueprint, endorsed by all his successors, will leave Britain short of electrons in the decades ahead as existing reactors built in the 1970s reach the end of their lives. The new Wylfa plant alone was designed to supply about 7 percent of the U.K.’s energy demand. Two types of energy will likely fill most of the gap: natural gas and offshore wind. Both come with challenges.
Bloomberg 12th Jan 2019 read more »
Climate scientists tell us that the world must drastically cut its fossil fuel use in the next 30 years to stave off a potentially catastrophic tipping point for the planet. Confronting this challenge is a moral issue, but it’s also a math problem—and a big part of the solution has to be nuclear power.
Wall Street Journal 11th Jan 2019 read more »