EDF's ownership of British Energy hands it control of eight of the UK's 10 operational nuclear plants and the generator has already stated its intention to build four new nuclear reactors in the UK, with the first to be operational by 2017.
So far EdF, RWE npower and E.ON have all stated their desire to build new nuclear plants in the UK, with RWE npower securing a grid connection for a new nuclear power station on land adjacent to the existing Magnox plant at Wylfa on the Isle of Anglesey. E. ON does not yet own any nuclear sites.
"Given the challenge of climate change and energy security, it is
right to embrace nuclear power as one of the technologies that can
serve us in the future," said Energy and Climate Change secretary Ed Miliband.
"Today's announcement marks an important step on the path to new nuclear power becoming a reality, just a year after we published the Nuclear Energy White Paper.
"In addition to the important investment made by EdF, our ambition is
to have more than one firm building and operating nuclear power stations in the UK. There are strong signals of interest in this from
the power industry and we will continue to work with stakeholders to
bring about the conditions that can make that possible."