Point C near Burnham-On-Sea gets the government go-ahead
development of a new £14bn nuclear power plant at Hinkley
Point, near Burnham-On-Sea, has been given approval on Tuesday.
Energy Secretary Ed Davey told MPs in the House of Commons that
he was granting planning consent for French energy giant EDF to
construct Hinkley C.
proposed power plant will be capable of powering five million
homes and will create between 25,000 and 25,000 jobs and 900 permanent
jobs once in operation.
Mr Davey said the project was "of crucial national importance".
He told the Commons: "The planning decision to give consent
to Hinkley Point follows a rigorous examination from the Planning
Inspectorate, and detailed analysis within my department."
"This planned project adds to a number of new energy projects
consented since May 2010, including wind farms and biomass and
gas-fired power stations."
"It will benefit the local economy, through direct employment,
the supply chain and the use of local services."
EDF says the project will generate taxes equivalent to a few
percentage points of what the entire financial sector yields for
energy giant is still negotiating with ministers over what it
can charge for the electricity Hinkley generates for decades to
Environmental groups have reacted angrily to the news, raising
concerns over the potentially high price for electricity that
the government will agree to in order to get the nuclear plant
built, and over the issue of nuclear waste.
Greenpeace's John Sauven said: "It will lock a generation
of consumers into higher energy bills, via a strike price that's
expected to be double the current price of electricity, and it
will distort energy policy by displacing newer, cleaner, cheaper
technologies. With companies now saying the price of offshore
wind will drop so much it will be on par with nuclear by 2020,
there is no rationale for allowing Hinkley C to proceed."
Friends of the Earth's Craig Bennett added: "The only way
this plant will be built is if the government hands over a blank
cheque from UK taxpayers to French developers, EDF. The most cost-effective
way to cut carbon and keep the lights on is a combination of energy
efficiency and investing in renewables."