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UK government plan – residents on the hook in advance for costly Sizewell nuclear plan that will be useless to combat climate change

A remote area on England’s east coast, halfway between the seaside towns of Felixstowe and Lowestoft, is set to become the centre of debate about Britain’s future energy security. UK ministers are aiming to bring
forward legislation in the autumn to support the financing of a 3.2 gigawatt nuclear power station in Sizewell, East Suffolk….

Ministers have been in formal negotiations with EDF about how to fund the proposed £20bn Sizewell C
plant since December, and the government and the French state-backed utility have had discussions about replacing Britain’s ageing nuclear reactors for years.

However, the question of whether Britain should build more large plants took on added urgency last month, when EDF closed the 1.1GW Dungeness B station in Kent seven years early. It also raised the prospect that other reactors may also be decommissioned ahead of schedule, owing to problems with their graphite cores……….

“If there was [a capacity issue], what good is Sizewell going to do given it won’t come on line until 2034
according to EDF?” asks Stephen Thomas, emeritus professor of energy policy at the University of Greenwich. Nuclear sceptics have long argued that money would be better spent on clean energy technologies, such as
offshore wind, and reducing electricity demand through measures including insulation.

Under a RAB model, consumers would pay towards a new plant through their energy bills long before any electricity is generated. Opponents of the model warn that consumers would also be on the hook for
cost overruns.

 FT 14th July 2021


July 15, 2021 - Posted by | climate change, politics, UK

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