reaction to government's approval for Hinkley Point C expansion
government has given the go-ahead to Hinkley Point's expansion
near Burnham-On-Sea today (Monday).
EDF Energy will lead a consortium that includes Chinese investors
to build the new Hinkley Point C power station near Burnham-On-Sea.
and EDF have been in talks for more than a year, however the two
sides have finally agreed the all-important 'strike price' - the
guaranteed rate to be paid for electricity produced at the site.
existing plant at Hinkley Point currently produces about 1% of
the UK's total energy, and that will rise to 7% if the expansion
two reactors proposed at Hinkley Point C, which will provide power
until around the second half of this century, are a key part of
the government's drive to shift the UK away from fossil fuels
towards low-carbon power.
will come at a price, however, with the government promising to
pay the owners of Hinkley Point a fee of £92.50 for
every megawatt of power Hinkley C generates per hour. This will
fall to £89.50 for every megawatt of power if EDF goes ahead
with plans to develop a new nuclear power station at Sizewell
is almost twice the current wholesale market price for electricity
at around £50. The government will be paying that price
for 30-40 years, irrespective of whether market prices soar or
today's announcement is not legally binding and it will be 2014
before EDF makes a final investment decision on the project. The
plans will also require state aid clearance from the European
to generate £14billion of investment over the next decade,
the Hinkley Point C development will create around 25,000 jobs
during construction and 900 permanent jobs during operation
news has been met with disappointment by some campaigners.
Brown from Burnham-based Parents Concerned About Hinkley
told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "It will be a disaster for the Burnham
area and beyond if Hinkley Point C goes ahead."
cost of the 'strike price' sounds astronomical and it would make
far more financial and environmental sense if solar panels and
wind farms were placed on the Hinkley Point site instead of more
health damage from nuclear in the Burnham area since 1966 has
been huge - the increased cancer rates are well documented."
Hinkley campaign group spokeswoman Nikki Clark added: "The
coalition government have dug themselves into a hole. They are
desperate to implement their half-baked energy strategy and it
seems they don't know when to stop digging."
go to any lengths to create more nuclear power stations. They
claim we need nuclear for climate change but as well as as the
long predicted construction delays translating into carbon target
delays, the nuclear establishments green credentials are highly
coalition government also claim that we need nuclear power to
keep the lights on but this latest move is akin to giving away
the light switch! Since when is Russia having control of our gas
taps more problematic that the largest most powerful authoritarian
state in the world having control of our most dangerous technology
Smith, GMB national secretary for energy, said: "EDF
seem to have sought a reasonable deal. It appears they haven't
sought to drive home the advantage they had in the negotiations
over the strike price. We have an energy policy that is in tatters,
which in turn left the UK government in a very weak bargaining
District Council Leader Cllr Duncan McGinty praised the Government
and EDFs persistence in reaching agreement: "We are
pleased that EDF and the Government have concluded their negotiations
on a strike price. This is an important step in a long journey
before Hinkley Point C starts generating electricity for the nation.
We will continue to work with EDF to make sure that local people
justly benefit from hosting the power station on their doorstep."
of State for Energy Ed Davey added: "Local people are
very happy" about getting the investment for the new nuclear
power plant in their area, creating thousands of jobs." He
said 57% of the work will go to British firms and British workers,
despite the involvement of the French and Chinese.
we compete in the tough global race, this underlines the confidence
there is in Britain and makes clear that we are very much open
for business" said Prime Minister David Cameron on
the Hinkley Point C agreement.