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CBI: Britain needs six new nuclear stations by 2030

The UK will miss climate change targets unless six new nuclear power stations are built by 2030, warns business body the CBI.

16GW of new nuclear will need to be built in to displace CO2-emitting power stations, they say - 10-12 reactors, based at 6-10 new plants, which would be built on existing nuclear sites.

They say in a report, ‘Forging  a Nuclear Renaissance: Making new nuclear a reality’, published today that without a significant shift in energy policy, the private sector will not be able to build these new stations.

The CBI says renewable energy is subsidised at the expense of other low-carbon power sources, including nuclear. CBI Director of Business Environment, Dr Neil Bentley, said: “With most existing nuclear plants due to close within ten years, we urgently need new reactors to come on stream.

“Nuclear power can play a key role in cutting carbon emissions and bolstering energy security. It needs to be part of a broad-based energy mix that includes wind and other renewable sources, gas and clean coal.

“The forthcoming national planning statements should deliver a firm commitment to building new nuclear power by identifying enough sites to accommodate the scale of new reactors that will be needed. Meanwhile, the new Infrastructure Planning Commission should hit the ground running and take steps to speed up the planning regime, so firms can invest in new energy projects with confidence,” he said.

The CBI says steps must urgently be taken:

  • Publish National Policy Statements for new nuclear build as quickly as possible.
  • Set up a joint government-industry task force to explore whether an additional market mechanism is needed to incentivise the volume of low-carbon generation that must be built.
  • Deliver a long-term nuclear waste solution for the UK.
  • Provide support for companies involved in the nuclear supply chain.

Businesses are also urged to maintain nuclear skills capacity and build a dialogue with the public.

Readers' comments (4)

  • Without doubt we must have new nuclear generation in the UK. At the moment electricity prices are such that nuclear is un economic. Nuclear is too expensive. Mr Gordon Brown has said that at least 70% of new build must be sourced from UK based suppliers. To make this possible it is the UK suppliers who must have government support. Why import and then pay dole to unemployed to UK workers. Concrete,steel and manpower build nuclear power stations. We can produce the fuel at Selafield and dispose of waste. Start building ASAP. Build nuclear and build UK industry. To increase electricity prices is a non starter!

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  • Accepting the case that we must reduce our exposure to one or two suppliers, and accepting that nuclear power forms part of the spreading of risk, and accepting that nuclear power is the most expensive form of electricity ....... then someone has to pay for it. If electricity prices aren't raised to pay for what needs to be done, other taxes will be. Isn't it better that the user pays rather than spreading the cost around lesser-users and non-users?

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  • I think that the first decision is to extend the useful life of Oldbury, Wylfa and the AGRs. For the vitally needed new reactors there are only two types from which to chose. EDF have shown that the sound decision is to choose a single type.

    The sites choose themselves. Halcrow's surveyed Dungeness A, B, C & D in November 1957 - 52 years ago! I was there. Soil Mechanics Limited carried out a full survey for Oldbury B years ago - to avoid the foundation problems which occurred, but were solved, at Oldbury A. Largely my problem.

    Without these new nuclear stations, the lights will go out. At 77, should I now be worrying about energy supplies?

    Brian Corbett FICE

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  • Hi there Brian. Should we worry about the future? YES YES. Its a bit like planting a tree. Who will benifit?
    Starting any project requires vision and a hope that we complete something we will be proud to have our names linked with.
    Keep up your commernts, only 77. I helped to supply electricity. But what I realy brought to people was LIGHT. JD was my friend, King of the Light.

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