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Mini nuclear reactor firm snubs Britain for the French: Newcleo blames political chaos for decision to build prototype across Channel

Britain’s nuclear power ambitions suffered another setback as a UK company
chose France to build its prototype reactor. Newcleo blamed political
upheaval in Westminster for its decision. The mini-nuclear power station
company said it waited in vain for ministers to give the green light over
where to site the project – leaving it no option but to take the work over
the Channel.

The move will cost hundreds of potential UK jobs and casts
further doubt on the country’s nuclear future. Speaking at the World
Economic Forum in Davos, Newcleo chief executive Stefano Buono told the
Mail: ‘Changing government three times has not helped. ‘We were
expecting a decision before, but I understand that when the government
changes, it’s very difficult to take decisions.’ Britain is scrambling to
replace its fleet of six large nuclear plants, five of which are due for
closure by 2028 and one, Sizewell B, in 2035.

Hopes for the mini-nuclear sector were raised by Boris Johnson’s plans for a government-backed body
called Great British Nuclear (GBN) to support the development of new sites.
Speaking in the Commons yesterday, the former prime minister urged the
Government ‘to exploit this country’s technological lead and build a
fleet of small modular nuclear reactors as part of our Great British
Nuclear programme’. Business Secretary Grant Shapps said GBN would be up
and running shortly and said small modular reactors would play ‘an
important part’ in boosting nuclear power supplies. The Government wants 25
per cent of power to come from nuclear by 2050. Last year it supplied 15.5
per cent. Privately-owned Newcleo, which is about to launch a £900million
funding round, is one of a number of companies planning to build
mini-nuclear power stations around the UK.

Daily Mail 17th Jan 2023


January 18, 2023 - Posted by | politics, UK

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