Policy statement identifies eight sites for new nuclear plants

The Government has listed eight sites as potentially suitable for the deployment of new nuclear power stations by 2025 as it published its finalised energy national policy statements.

Hinkley Point nuclear reactor in Somerset (credit: Mediatheque EDF / Laurent Vautrin)
Hinkley Point nuclear reactor in Somerset (credit: Mediatheque EDF / Laurent Vautrin)

A nuclear national policy statement – one of six laid before Parliament this morning – lists the following eight sites across the country as suitable for new nuclear power stations:

-    Bradwell, Essex
-    Hartlepool, Borough of Hartlepool
-    Heysham, Lancashire
-    Hinkley Point, Somerset
-    Oldbury, South Glos
-    Sellafield, Cumbria
-    Sizewell, Suffolk
-    Wylfa, Isle of Anglesey

Charity Friends of the Earth said that the confirmation of the Government's intention to build eight nuclear plants was an "expensive gamble".

Friends of the Earth energy campaigner Simon Bullock said: "The Government is obsessed with putting a new nuclear millstone around Britain's neck. But nuclear is a gamble we don't need to take - we can meet our energy needs by investing in energy efficiency and developing the UK's vast potential for clean renewable power."

The proposed energy NPSs – which also include statements on fossil fuel electricity generating infrastructure, renewable energy infrastructure, gas supply infrastructure and electricity networks infrastructure - will now debated in Parliament.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change said in a statement that the date of the debate is subject to confirmation from Parliamentary authorities.

Energy minister Charles Hendry said: "Around a quarter of the UK’s generating capacity is due to close by the end of this decade. We need to replace this with secure, low carbon, affordable energy. This will require over £100 billion worth of investment in electricity generation alone. This means twice as much investment in energy infrastructure in this decade as was achieved in the last decade.

"Industry needs as much certainty as possible to make such big investments. These plans set out our energy need to help guide the planning process, so that if acceptable proposals come forward in appropriate places, they will not face unnecessary hold-ups."

The six national policy statements are available below:

- Overarching Energy NPS
- Fossil Fuel Electricity Generating Infrastructure NPS
- Renewable Energy Infrastructure NPS
- Gas Supply Infrastructure and Gas and Oil Pipelines NPS
- Electricity Networks Infrastructure NPS
- Nuclear Power Generation NPS (volume 1)
- Nuclear Power Generation NPS (volume 2)

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