Taxpayers could shoulder the multibillion-pound cost of civil engineering works for new nuclear power plants to make them easier to finance and reduce their impact on energy bills, the company seeking to build reactors in Cumbria has suggested. Tom Samson, chief executive of NuGen, proposed reviewing how the different elements of new nuclear plants could be “carved up in different way to allow the Government to take a role in some of the enabling infrastructure”. This could include funding major aspects of construction such as “the civil works”, he told a House of Lords committee. Mr Samson’s company wants to build three Westinghouse reactors at Moorside, near Sellafield in Cumbria, in a 3.8-gigawatt project he said was expected to cost up to £15bn. But financing presents a major challenge for the project, which is 60pc owned by Japan’s Toshiba and 40pc by France’s Engie, formerly GDF Suez. It has been in talks with potential investors for months about a deal. Lord Darling, the former Chancellor, suggested that instead of the “elaborate quasi-market process” used for Hinkley, resulting in an “extraordinarily high” subsidy price, it could make more sense for the Government to “just build nuclear power stations”. While Mr Samson said nationalisation would be an “extreme solution”, he opened the door to the Government taking a role in the non-nuclear elements of the project, saying this would be a “valid perspective”. Areas the Government could look to fund would include “potentially some of the common works, the sea water intake, the civil works”, he said. Civil works such as earth movement at Hinkley have stretched to several billion pounds and preparatory works for Moorside could be of a similar magnitude. NuGen is already lobbying via the Cumbrian Local Enterprise Partnership for Government assistance in improving the transport infrastructure in the Cumbrian area to help support both decommissioning operations at Sellafield and the proposed construction site at Moorside. Ministers are reported to have commissioned a study earlier this year to consider alternative funding models, which also suggested the Government could take direct stakes in future projects.
Telegraph 5th Nov 2016 read more »
UK’s nuclear company NuGen, a joint venture between Japan’s Toshiba and France’s ENGIE, said Tuesday its planned 3,800-megawatt (MW) nuclear power plant in northwest England would cost far less than the Hinkley facility. Speaking before the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee, NuGen CEO Tom Samson said he was aiming for the Moorside project in Cumbria, which would be bigger than EDF’s project, to roughly cost between “£13-£15 billion” ($16.1-18.6 billion). Samson added the company was making “strong progress” in constructing other AP1000 nuclear reactors elsewhere in the world. “The delivery certainty and the confidence comes with taking the lessons learned from our global experience and building it into a UK mindset – for delivery in this country.” NuGen and rival Horizon reportedly told the committee their projects would be cheaper and seek lower subsidies from the government than Hinkley Point C.
Kallanish Energy 4th Nov 2016 read more »