There seems to be practically no one left who thinks Hinkley is a good idea. Newspaper columnists are falling over themselves to condemn the project. Only UK Chancellor George Osborne and EDF’s CEO are left defending it. I suspect they privately wish it would disappear as well, but they have to save face. But saving face is not a sensible motivation for national energy policy, and there’s wide agreement that everyone would be better off if we can find a way out. The important thing is that such a scenario absolutely must involve much greater investment in renewables, storage capacity and smart grid technology. Otherwise the gap could be filled by more polluting technologies, as happened when Germany shut down its nuclear reactors following the Fukushima disaster.
New Economics Foundation 1st April 2016 read more »
Electricite de France SA has mitigated financial, technical and governance risks of its plan to build two nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point in the U.K. with a Chinese partner, paving the way for the French utility’s board to make a final decision on the 18 billion pound ($26 billion) project. “The final investment decision should be taken before the board in coming weeks,” Dominique Miniere, EDF’s head of nuclear and thermal power generation, said Thursday at a conference in Paris. EDF’s chief executive officer believes “the risks of delaying are greater than the risks of not doing so, given the mitigating measures” that the company has introduced, Miniere said.
Bloomberg 31st March 2016 read more »
French energy company EDF has tersely dismissed as “fanciful” speculation that it is less than committed to moving ahead with the Hinkley C project. The company said it had been subject to a campaign of misinformation about the two new nuclear reactors in Somerset and that a start date of 2025 was set in stone. A spokesman said: “In recent days, a number of unfounded rumours and fanciful stories, from anonymous sources, have been put out in the media.
Plymouth Herald 31st March 2016 read more »
WORLD leaders will gather in Washington to discuss how to prevent terrorists getting hold of radioactive material, with the UK set to play a leading role in protecting nuclear facilities from cyber attack. The UK and United States will take part in a joint exercise next year to prepare for any online attack against nuclear power plants and waste storage facilities, such as those at Hinkley, Somerset.
Burnham & Highbridge Weekly News 31st March 2016 read more »
The real guiding principle of UK energy policy has been facilitating one single power station — Hinkley C — the infamous nuclear plant that was due to come on line in 2017, or 2025, or possibly 2027, or sometime in the early 2030s, or maybe not at all if the delays continue as they have done for the last decade. Hinkley has required the government to rig the energy markets in a way which favoured nuclear over renewables, just as it became clear to the rest of the world that the future belongs to renewables and nuclear belongs to the past. As a consequence the entirely rational global drop in investment in fossil fuels and nuclear has been matched in the UK with a drop in investment in clean energy, engineered through government policy. According to recent research, from 2017 onwards we will be losing billions in potential investment in clean tech, a loss due to the government’s ideologically driven energy policies. This systemic policy failure impacts on all three aspects of the energy ‘trilemma’ — the government’s chosen framing for energy issues.
Greenpeace 31st March 2016 read more »
The first EDF board member to go public with their intention to vote against the £18 billion project to build Hinkley C nuclear power station has said his own firm’s timetable was ‘not credible’. Christian Taxil spoke out as pressure on the state-owned French power firm – and the French Government – intensified to clarify the position on exactly how it will finance what will be the biggest single building project in Britain.
Western Daily Press 1st April 2016 read more »