Local reaction to approval of £18bn Hinkley Point deal
government has today (Thursday) given the go-ahead to build Hinkley
Point C nuclear power station near Bunham-On-Sea.
The French and Chinese governments have been told that the £18bn
project will proceed, but with "significant new safeguards"
to protect national security.
MP James Heappey welcomed the news, saying: "The go-ahead
is great news. It's the right decision to ensure a clean and renewable
energy supply. It's a game changer for Somerset's economy too."
will be a crucial part of the UK's future energy mix, providing
7% of the country's total electricity needs when up and running.
It is also expected to create 25,000 jobs.
Duncan McGinty, Leader of Sedgemoor District Council had a private
meeting with the Prime Minister yesterday (Wednesday, 14th September),
along with Bridgwater and West Somerset MP, Ian Liddell-Grainger.
Cllr McGinty said: "I was very grateful to the Prime Minister
for the opportunity to tell her first hand about the local perspective
of the positive impacts of Hinkley Point C across Sedgemoor, Somerset
and the wider south-west economy and pleased that the government
have concluded their review and that HPC has now got a green light.
The two local councils of Sedgemoor and West Somerset recognise
the very significant responsibility of hosting the first of the
UK's new nuclear power stations and will continue work with both
the Government and EDF Energy to ensure that the benefits to their
communities are long-lasting."
added: "We are so pleased that the review that the Prime Minister
called for in July has been concluded and that the decision by the
Government is to back the building of Hinkley Point C."
we await to hear the detail of the decision from Government, Sedgemoor
District Council is Hinkley-ready and have staff in
place to support and implement the project to maximise benefit to
local people and businesses as well as minimise impacts."
"This decision now gives a sound basis for a green light for
the project after many false dawns and we can get on with all the
plans that we have been working on for the past eight years. Hinkley
Point C will be the UK's largest engineering and construction project
in modern times. Sedgemoor District Council, together with partners,
will continue working towards maximising local benefits but being
mindful of the mitigating measures that will be required."
of Somerset County Council John Osman said the decision is a
"once in a generation" opportunity and will "bring
unprecedented investment and job creation to the county and the
County Councillor David Hall, cabinet member for business
and inward investment, said the plants will be the catalyst for
economic growth in Somerset: "During construction alone, the
project is expected to bring £200m to the local economy."
Pumphrey of the Stop Hinkley Campaign said: "Bridgwater
will not know what has hit it when, and if, the real work on the
power station should it ever start, begins. Once the thousands of
vans, hundreds of buses... are all on the roads Bridgwater will
become a no go area as far as access is concerned."
Gibson from Greenpeace said there is 'huge uncertainly' about
Hinkely C and it would be better to 'invest in renewable energy
which is cheaper and more reliable'. She said: "I don't think
it's over. The deal may still unravel and cause a great deal of
concern for the people of Somerset. There is huge uncertainty around
this project... it's better to invest in renewable energy - it's
cheaper and more reliable."
executive of Visit Somerset John Turner said the "eyes
of the world will be on Somerset" and they are getting ready
to "welcome probably the largest workforce coming into the
Member of the European Parliament, Julie Girling, also welcomed
the decision. "I think it was only right that the new Prime
Minister should want to satisfy herself over the cost and security
matters involved in a huge investment from China."
I am delighted the result is a green light. As someone who works
closely on environmental issues I am convinced that nuclear has
to play a key part in a clean, green power mix. When the scheme
goes ahead it will mean a major boost for jobs and the economy of
our region for many years to come."
Edwards, Chief Executive of Somerset Chamber of Commerce, said:
"The governments confirmation of the green light for
Hinkley Point C is tremendous news for the region, signalling the
start of a project that will bring enormous investment, the creation
and security of many thousands of jobs, and huge benefits for the
county as a whole through improved infrastructure and phenomenal
"It is extremely gratifying to finally get confirmation that
the project will happen, giving local businesses the opportunity
to be part of Europes largest infrastructure project and build
a legacy that will benefit future generations."
"Hinkley Point C is expected to be worth over £200million
per year to the regional economy during the years of core construction
activity, and almost £4billion over the lifetime of the project."
"The substantial investment and opportunities this will bring
for local businesses are the culmination of many years of sustained
collaboration with EDF Energy to develop a robust supply chain that
can deliver this major infrastructure project. While over £465million
of contact values have already been awarded to businesses in Somerset
and the South West as a result of the supply chain activity, todays
announcement is likely to be the stimulus that will really kick-start
the benefits and opportunities that this project will bring."
about over-priced electricity, Chinese security concerns, and also
fears over the unproven design of the two new reactors prompted
the decision to be postponed in July.
during her recent visit to the G20 summit in China this month, Prime
Minister Theresa May defended the delay, insisting it was down to
"the way I operate" because she wanted a fresh look at
decision on investment was approved by EDF's board in July, and
was agreed in principle with China during the state visit by President
Xi Jinping to the UK in October 2015. France's EDF has already agreed
to pay for two-thirds of the project, with China paying one-third
as well as using its designs for additional power stations.