Energy giant EDF is being asked to delay the formal consultation on its plans for a new £14billion nuclear power plant on the Suffolk coast until after the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions are lifted. Community leaders believe people need to be able to attend public meetings and other events as part of the process for the Sizewell C planning application submitted yesterday. Some industry observers say this would mean autumn at the earliest – and a final decision on the project late next year. The leaders of East Suffolk Council and Suffolk County Council have been supportive of EDF Energy making the Development Consent Order submission for permission for the project but are continuing to call on the company to ensure they talk to the two local authorities before triggering the formal Section 56 process and timescale which includes a period of formal public engagement. Steve Gallant and Matthew Hicks said: “We have written to EDF Energy asking them to delay the Section 56 process given the current Government guidance on social distancing, social isolation and public gatherings. We believe all parties must be satisfied that appropriate public engagement can take place. “We would like EDF Energy to continue its discussions with both councils so we can work together to find a suitable solution that works for all our communities.” Meanwhile, Pete Wilkinson, chair of Together Against Sizewell C (TASC), has written to all Suffolk county councillors calling on them to let their hearts rule their heads and reject the project, which he claims will “irreparably alter that unique Suffolk character and nature of this tranquil and welcoming county, transforming it into just another over-developed, car-dominated, road-centred, urbanised area of the UK like so many others – bland, conformist and uniform”. Mr Wilkinson said: “EDF have today applied to the national planning inspectorate for permission to build two huge nuclear reactors on a site which is barely big enough to contain them. It requires the destruction of the 100 year old Coronation Wood for its overspill facilities. The construction is designed to house two European Pressurised Reactors generating 3.2 gigawatts of electricity at full power. The Sizewell B plant has recently reduced its output by 50% at a reported cost of £50million due to over-supply. This over-supply is not just a consequence of the covid-19 pandemic. In 2005, the government made plans to meet a predicted 15% increase in electricity demand by 2020. In fact, demand has dropped over those 15 years by 16%, an overestimation of demand by more than 30%. It is axiomatic that Sizewell C is not needed to ‘keep the lights on’ nor is it an essential infrastructure project.”
East Anglian Daily Times 27th May 2020 read more »
EDF’s application to build Sizewell C, a new nuclear power station in Suffolk, has been submitted to the Planning Inspectorate. If approved, Sizewell C will supply around six million homes with always-on, low carbon electricity made in the UK. It will support the expansion of renewables and improve the UK’s national resilience by reducing the need for energy imports. The DCO application was deferred for two months in recognition of the extraordinary circumstances created by the coronavirus. Extra measures will be put in place to make it easier for local communities to scrutinise the proposals once they are published. These include extending the pre-examination period to allow more time for interested parties to register with the Planning Inspectorate.
Infrastructure Intelligence 27th May 2020 read more »
Couldn’t resist helping to edit EDF’s press release.
Stop Sizewell C 27th May 2020 read more »
EDF hopes to fund the project using a structure that would allow the company to be paid during the construction phase, cutting the development risk and allowing it to secure cheaper financing. Proponents say this type of financing, previously used in Britain to finance infrastructure assets such as water and electricity networks, would ultimately lower the cost for consumers. However, critics say it will leave taxpayers liable for any cost over-runs and delays. EDF’s Hinkley Point C project, which will be Britain’s first new nuclear plant in almost two decades when complete, has suffered several delays is now expected to cost around 21.5-22.5 billion pounds. EDF expects Sizewell C to be around 20% cheaper than Hinkley. China’s CGN, which has a 33.5% stake in Hinkley C also has a 20% stake in the development phase of Sizewell C.
EU Reporter 28th May 2020 read more »
Building 29th May 2020 read more »
EDF says that by replicating the design of Hinkley Point C, which is currently running around £3bn over budget, Sizewell C will “benefit from significantly reduced construction costs and lower risk”, while “innovative financing has the potential to reduce costs even further”.
NS Energy 27th May 2020 read more »
Construction at Sizewell C could start after the dome lift at Hinkley Point C is completed (planned for 2021), Cadoux-Hudson said at an industry conference in June last year.
S&P Global 27th May 2020 read more »
To coincide with EDF Energy’s DCO application, Energy for Humanity urged the secretary of state for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to make a statement in support of the development of Sizewell C. In an open letter to Alok Sharma, it wrote that such a statement would be “particularly meaningful” as the UK continues preparations for hosting COP26, now in 2021, “where we have called for nuclear energy to be appropriately represented as the world’s second largest source of clean energy”. Energy for Humanity is a UK-based non-profit organisation focused on solving climate change and enabling universal access to modern energy services.
World Nuclear News 27th May 2020 read more »
Engineering & Technology 27th May 2020 read more »
The Engineer 27th May 2020 read more »
EDF has predicted the cost of Sizewell C will be 20% lower than Hinkley Point C – which is set to cost about £20bn ($26bn) – because of the similarities between the stations and established infrastructure. But in an interview with The Times in April 2018, the company’s UK chief executive Simone Rossi questioned whether the project would remain “feasible” without faster progress being made at the Hinkley Point C site – which has suffered from rising costs and delays – and a government guarantee. The firm is still talking with the government about workable funding models that can convince it to stay at the table. Speaking about the possibility of no functional funding model appearing, Mr Rossi said: “This is the year where we need to understand whether this whole thing is really feasible or not. “If we were to conclude that maybe it’s not feasible, then at that point maybe we say we are not in a position to continue the project.” In January 2020, it was reported that EDF was running out of time to secure a funding deal before the project became prohibitively expensive.
NS Energy 27th May 2020 read more »
ENERGY giant EDF has submitted plans to build a third nuclear power station at Sizewell on the Suffolk coast. Sizewell C would generate enough low-carbon electricity to power 6million homes. It would also create 25,000 jobs and 1,000 apprenticeships during building, and employ 900 skilled workers once finished, the company said. But the Stop Sizewell C campaign group claims the scheme will divert investment from other green energy sources and damage tourism and nature. Suffolk Wildlife Trust said it would lead to the loss of fenland. And the RSPB said it would harm wildlife including water voles, bitterns and otters.
Metro 28th May 2020 read more »
Wildlife groups have criticised plans to build a new nuclear power station on the Suffolk coast, warning it could harm important nature in the area. But the move by energy giant EDF to submit the application for the 3.2-gigawatt Sizewell C nuclear plant has been welcomed by unions and businesses.
Energy Voice 27th May 2020 read more »
Suffolk Wildlife Trust (SWT) said construction would lead to the loss of rare fen habitat. Ben McFarland, SWT’s conservation manager, said: “Current plans suggest the direct loss of nationally important and protected land on Sizewell Belts, a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). “An area between 10-12 hectares – or roughly 10 football pitches – will be covered in concrete. The loss of this nationally rare fen habitat would be devastating and irreplaceable.” The RSPB said the development would affect its Minsmere nature reserve, potentially affecting water levels in the wetlands which would harm rare wildlife such as water voles, bitterns and otters. Noise and light pollution from construction would have a detrimental effect on marsh harriers and wading birds, the wildlife charity said.
Ecologist 27th May 2020 read more »
Suffolk coast ‘would be devastating’ for wildlife. The proposals have been opposed by a string of environmental and nature groups, including the National Trust, as well as local campaigners who fear the coronavirus pandemic will prevent their voices being heard. The National Trust, Suffolk Wildlife Trust (SWT) and RSPB all said the energy firm had failed to provide evidence that its plans would not threaten the area’s rare animal species and protected habitats. The RSPB said construction may increase erosion and disrupt water levels in neighbouring Minsmere nature reserve, which would be potentially “catastrophic” for species including bitterns, water voles, and otters. “EDF have not presented us with sufficient evidence that these disastrous impacts can be avoided,” said Adam Rowlands, the RSPB’s area manager for Suffolk. “Without this evidence, we have been forced to conclude, given the levels of uncertainty, that the build must not go ahead given its anticipated impacts on the environment.” Ben McFarland, SWT’s head of conservation, warned the plans also “suggest the direct loss of nationally important and protected land” on Sizewell Belts, a Site of Special Scientific Interest. He said: “An area between 10-12 hectares — or roughly ten football pitches — will be covered in concrete. The loss of this nationally rare fen habitat would be devastating and irreplaceable.”
Independent 27th May 2020 read more »