EDF granted site licence for new UK nuclear plant

LONDON Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:36pm GMT

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LONDON (Reuters) - France's EDF and partner Centrica have received the first UK site licence for a new nuclear plant in 25 years, paving the way for Britain's first new nuclear station since 1995.

EDF was granted the licence on Monday for Hinkley Point in Somerset, where it intends to build two of the four nuclear power reactors it plans to construct in Britain.

The Office of Nuclear Regulation's (ONR) site licence clears a major regulatory hurdle for EDF and Centrica's NNB GenCo joint venture, which also requires approval for the reactor it plans to use, permits from the Environment Agency and planning consent from the government before it can start building.

EDF and engineering partner Areva are likely to receive the green light for the use of Areva's EPR nuclear reactor in Britain before the end of the year.

"EDF Energy is now on the brink of delivering new nuclear at Hinkley Point C with an infrastructure project similar in scale to the London Olympics, delivering significant benefits in terms of jobs, skills and economic growth, both locally and nationally," EDF Energy, the UK arm of the French utility, said in a statement.

The Hinkley Point project was expected to start operating in 2018, but regulatory delays after the Fukushima disaster in Japan have pushed back the start date. It is now unlikely to be up and running before 2020.

The approval review process has cost 8 million pounds to date, a fee which EDF and Centrica will cover, the ONR said.

The British government plans to support the use of nuclear power plants in future by reforming the country's electricity market in a way that will guarantee a minimum price for low-carbon power generation, including nuclear power.

The final details of the required legislation are expected to be published this week.

(Reporting by Karolin Schaps; Editing by David Goodman)

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Comments (1)
prismsuk wrote:
We’re still going with yesterday’s technology, carrying all its ant-nuke baggage regarding safety (because it works at high pressure) and the creation of long-lived waste (because it burns only 1% of the energy available from the uranium fuel).

The Government knows we are uniquely placed to lead the world into the era of new nuclear technology – that of the breeder reactor.

The Gen IV, GE Hitachi PRISM Power Block is under consideration to burn our plutonium stockpile and produce 622 MW of commercial electricity for over 50 years. The minuscule waste produced decays to background radiation levels in only 300 years.

A fleet of PRISM PBs could generate all of the UK’s electricity for the next 500 years, from our legacy waste, which includes 35,000 tonnes of depleted uranium.

These reactors operate at atmospheric pressure and could be manufactured in their entirety in the UK. They are inherently and passively safe, shutting down according to the laws of physics, without human intervention, under the worst conceivable accident conditions.

At one fell swoop, a fleet of these reactors would: meet our carbon targets; give us 500 years of energy security; eliminate the need for nuclear waste repositories; provide the safest and most environmentally friendly form of power generation; boost UK manufacturing and prosperity to levels not seen in 3 generations.

Make sure your MP gets to know about this opportunity for the country. Google: “prisms to power the uk”

Nov 26, 2012 11:18pm GMT  --  Report as abuse
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