Planning consent was given today (3/19) for construction of the first new nuclear power station in the UK since 1995, in a boost to the move to a low carbon energy mix.
The approval clears the way for French energy major Electricite de France SA (EDF) to build two 1,600 MW AREVA EPR™ reactors.
The planned multi-billion pound project at Hinkley Point, Somerset – to be operated by NNB Generation - will generate enough low carbon electricity to power the equivalent of five million households, making it one of the largest power stations in the UK.
Two new reactors will be built, supporting between 20,000 and 25,000 jobs during construction and 900 permanent jobs during operation.
Edward Davey, Energy and Climate Change Secretary, said:
“The planning decision to give consent to Hinkley Point follows a rigorous examination from the Planning Inspectorate, and detailed analysis within my Department.
“I am confident that the planning decision I have made is robust, evidence-based, compatible with the Energy National Policy Statements and is in the best interests of the country.
“It’s vital to get investment in new infrastructure to get the economy moving. Low carbon energy projects will bring major investment, supporting jobs and driving growth.
“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.
“This planned new nuclear power station in Somerset will generate vast amounts of clean energy and enhance our energy security. It will benefit the local economy, through direct employment, the supply chain and the use of local services.”