An executive at the company hoping to build the new Hinkley Point nuclear power station in Somerset has told Sky News he fears it will never be finished. Norbert Tangy has worked at EDF for more than 40 years and is the president of the French FNCS Union, which represents senior energy executives. He claims the current plans for the site are flawed and need time to be revised. Mr Tangy warned: “If we go ahead now, Hinkley Point will never work, it will never be finished. “We’ll have a never-ending construction as we had in Olkiluoto because many people are running and spending money and the station is not completed, we cannot do it.”
Sky News 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
LBC 2nd Sept 2016 read more »
THE £18 billion Hinkley Point nuclear power station deal appears to be on the brink of being cancelled as Theresa May prepares for difficult talks in China. Mrs May is set to have long bilateral talks in the Chinese city of Hangzhou on Monday with Chinese President Xi Jinping immediately after the G20 summit where the issue is set to come up. The Chinese are reportedly “confused and upset” about the delay which is understood to be over concerns Mrs May’s advisers have about China. A Downing Street source last night suggested that the Prime Minister does not plan to indicate if the project will get the go ahead leading to speculation that she plans to cancel it altogether. The source said: “The purpose of the bilateral is more about establishing a broader relationship. It is possible that this [Hinkley Point] may come up but it is not the focus of it I think that the work that the Government is doing is looking at all the kind of element parts of the decision. The source said that the Government is still “looking at the component parts of the decision and we will continue to do so.”
Express 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
Theresa May is heading to China for her first major global summit as Prime Minister, but faces a row with her hosts over the Hinkley Point nuclear power station project. The Prime Minister hopes to use the G20 summit, where she will hold talks with world leaders including US president Barack Obama, to show that the UK remains a “dependable” diplomatic and trading partner in the wake of the vote to quit the European Union. But despite holding face-to-face talks with Chinese president Xi Jinping, Mrs May is not expected to use the meeting to make an announcement on the Hinkley Point project, which is backed by Beijing’s state-owned nuclear firm.
Press & Journal 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
Theresa May will this weekend refuse to give reassurances to her Chinese hosts about a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point amid mounting concern that she is poised to block a deal. The Prime Minister is expected to tell President Xi Jinping at the G20 summit during their first meeting that she will not reach a final decision on whether to go-ahead with the £18 billion plant until later this month. Senior Tory MPs last night warned that the row over Hinkley Point risks putting Mrs May’s attempts to build a new trade deal with China after Britain leaves the European Union in “jeopardy”.
Telegraph 2nd Sept 2016 read more »
Theresa May could face a diplomatic row with China at the G20 summit as she arrives for her first meeting with Xi Jinping, without having approved Beijing’s involvement in UK nuclear projects. There has been speculation that May could be happy to allow China to proceed with its Hinkley investment, but does not want Beijing to be involved in building a plant at Bradwell, Essex, or helping develop one at Sizewell, Suffolk. This suggestion is not understood to have gone down well in Beijing, which could abandon plans for the entire nuclear sector if the UK demands to decouple Hinkley from the other two projects, in which China would have a more active involvement. On Friday night, the Financial Times reported that a senior figure at EDF has said the Treasury or another investor may have to step in to save the deal, although the company denied that this was the official position. It is understood that executives from EDF met Greg Clark, the business, energy and industrial strategy secretary, on Thursday to press the case for Hinkley to be built. Barry Gardiner, the shadow energy secretary, said: “I don’t think [May’s] going to allow the Chinese to do Sizewell and Bradwell. I think she would be happy to have them involved in the financing of Hinkley, but I think informal soundings with the Chinese have come back and said: ‘Don’t even think about offering us that. Do you think we are interested in this for the return on a poxy £6bn? We are a Chinese state company and what we’re really interested in is being able to build 2.5 nuclear reactors in the most stringent regulatory regime in the world’. “They are so angry about this and apoplectic about what she is proposing. I think we will see a very clear slapdown from president Xi and an end of the golden era that was supposed to start last year.” Gardiner said May had a tricky decision to make over Hinkley, given that it was a bad value deal, but trade with China is crucial as Britain negotiates its departure from the EU.
Guardian 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
EDF executives say the British government could have to take a stake of up to Â£6bn in the Hinkley Point nuclear power station to avoid a “disaster” if the Chinese decide to withdraw from the project. The UK government has not set out a fallback option if the Chinese refuse to separate the Bradwell project from the overall deal and abandon their proposed investments in Britain. In public, Beijing remains committed to the deal. However, there has been growing speculation in the nuclear industry that Mrs May is prepared to invest billions of pounds into Hinkley Point if it becomes necessary. “If the Chinese pull out, the UK government itself will raise the money,” said one industry source. One senior EDF figure said: “If the Chinese pull out, there is no way that EDF will be able to pay for the rest itself. We would need the British or someone else to step in.” Another said it would be a “disaster” for the project if the Chinese withdrew, but that the company would “wait and see” what happened before assuming it was dead. The idea of the UK government taking stakes in new nuclear power stations was raised this week by the new boss of Horizon, the Hitachi-owned consortium that plans to build stations at Wylfa, on Anglesey, and Oldbury-on-Severn, in Gloucestershire. Barry Gardiner, shadow energy secretary, said that because government borrowing had never been cheaper, it could make sense for Hinkley – and other infrastructure – to be built with new low-interest debt raised by the government. But Mr Gardiner, who is also chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Chinese in Britain Group, said Mrs May’s decision would have wider consequences for trade relations between the two countries. “In China, face is very important,” he said. Any cancellation of the Hinkley deal would be likely to jeopardise other planned Chinese investments in the UK, according to Chinese officials.
FT 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
France concerned China talks could scupper Hinkley Point nuclear project
Energy Voice 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
Decentralised energy would be a quicker solution to reducing the UK’s carbon emissions than Hinkley Point C, the chair of the Renewable Energy Association has insisted. Martin Wright said that the association sees “huge potential” in decentralised energy, which he said could make a big impact faster than the new nuclear plant. “The REA sees huge potential in decentralised energy and I think whether or not Hinkley goes ahead, the problem of requiring power generation needs to be solved quicker than Hinkley will be able to do because it has been delayed so long,” he said. Wright told Utility Week that he has doubts about whether the “right technology” is there and whether nuclear is “cost effective”. He added that he believed decentralised energy will “come much more to the fore”, and that energy storage will “make a much bigger contribution” than people foresee.
Utility Week 1st Sept 2016 read more »
Five EDF Board Members are petitioning the courts to annul last month’s decision to go-ahead with Hinkley.
Burnham-on-sea.com 1st Sept 2016 read more »