The UK & Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) note that the UK Government’s Energy White Paper that came out just before Christmas 2020 gives strong support for new nuclear projects. It was a part of the Prime Minister’s ‘Ten Point Plan’ and it gives overt support for large nuclear projects, small modular reactors and even nuclear fusion. The Energy White Paper has some welcome parts to it, like support for offshore wind, developing greener buildings, seeking to move to zero emission vehicles and promoting green public transport. However, NFLA remains disappointed and continually frustrated over the lack of support given to onshore wind, solar energy, tidal and marine energy and decentralised energy in general. So many of the projects put forward are top-down and support big business far more than they do local communities. In terms of the support for new nuclear there is a commitment from the UK Government to get at least one further large nuclear reactor development achieved by the end of the next Parliament, which presumably means Sizewell C to join with Hinkley Point C. There is ongoing warm support for small modular reactors and to create an experimental nuclear fusion reactor, and extensive lobbying is going on from the nuclear sector to deliver this. The government have also ignored the comments made by many groups and seek to suggest that the Revenue Asset Base model may provide the public financing to support some of this work.
NFLA 14th Jan 2021 read more »