Ministers are under pressure to secure the future of the proposed Moorside nuclear plant in Cumbria as the industry braces for the potential withdrawal of Toshiba, the main developer. The Japanese conglomerate is due to give more details tomorrow about plans for overseas nuclear ventures after putting the entire business under review last month. Toshiba owns 60 per cent of the venture developing Moorside, which is due to use reactors made by Toshiba’s American subsidiary Westinghouse. It is said to be considering slashing its stake or withdrawing altogether as it battles multibillion-dollar losses because of cost overruns in S&W, a US nuclear construction business that Westinghouse bought two years ago. The decision comes at a sensitive time as the Conservatives are hoping to seize the Copeland parliamentary constituenc y, where the project is based, in a by-election next week. Greg Clark, the business and energy secretary, assured local residents that he would be “personally vigorous” in ensuring Moorside went ahead. He also played down the impact of any Toshiba exit, telling the local News & Star that Toshiba was “only part of the consortium” and that “the commitment of the consortium itself seems to be strong”. Moorside and a proposed Hitachi plant at Wylfa on Anglesey are supposed to follow EDF’s Hinkley Point plant as a new generation of power stations.
Times 13th Feb 2017 read more »