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Industry report predicts tens of thousands of new jobs in Wales if nuclear projects get green light

12 Sep 2023 3 minute read
Trawsfynydd

A new report has shown a small increase in the number of people working in the civil nuclear sector in Wales but predicts new projects could create tens of thousands of new jobs.

According to the Nuclear Industry Association’s annual Jobs Map report, 825 people currently work in the sector across Wales, a 3% increase on last year total, but well below the 20% increase seen in England.

Wales is home to two former nuclear power plants in Wylfa and Trawsfynydd, and both sites have been mentioned as possible sites for the new generation of Small Modular Reactors (SMR).

Wylfa on Anglesey is ranked as one of the best sites in Europe for new nuclear reactors and a new power station at the site would generate thousands of jobs during construction and nearly a thousand during operation, making it the island’s biggest employer.

More than 200 people currently work at Trawsfynydd, where Cwmni Egino, the Welsh Government’s development company, is exploring the economic benefits of having an SMR on the site.

Vital role

Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Industry Association, said: “Nuclear can and should play a vital role in Wales’s clean energy future. It has the potential to sustain tens of thousands of highly skilled, well-paid jobs, providing low-carbon power and energy security for communities up and down the country.

“Wales can have more of these jobs and opportunities for the next generation if we get on with building new large scale and small reactors at Wylfa and Trawsfynydd, alongside other clean energy projects. Wales has the people and the know-how to be a global nuclear energy hub.”

The Nuclear Industry Association argues that securing projects at these sites is vital to strengthening Wales’s energy security and to clean up electricity generation in the country.

The South Wales power grid routinely has the highest carbon intensity of all the regions in Britain.

North Wales has more renewable energy capacity, but lacks a backbone of clean, weather-proof power to stabilise the grid.

High-quality employment

Liz Saville-Roberts MP, Dwyfor Meirionnydd & Nuclear APPG Vice Chair said: “Nuclear sector jobs have long been a significant provider of well-paid high-quality employment in my constituency of Dwyfor Meirionnydd and north west Wales as a whole.

“In an area which otherwise suffers from low salaries, it is fantastic news to learn that nuclear industry jobs have increased by 3% in Wales over the last year.

“These exciting opportunities offer the chance to make a tangible difference in the challenge to develop technologies which serve the twin purpose of reducing carbon emissions and providing affordable energy.”

Virginia Crosbie MP, Ynys Môn & Nuclear APPG Vice Chair added: “We have the best site for nuclear and the best people, and we are ready to start building.

“A new project at Wylfa would transform the prospects of so many young people on the island and make us a clean energy powerhouse for the whole country. We’ve got to fight for that.”


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Cathy Jones
Cathy Jones
7 months ago

“Wylfa on Anglesey is ranked as one of the best sites in Europe for new nuclear reactors” AS LONG AS THE SEA LEVEL DOESN’T RISE. ….but the sea level IS going to rise. Fukushima is a place of history. For those interested in Koryu martial arts it is steeped in Samurai history and an important place for those fascinated with the Shinobi techniques. A place of breathtaking beauty…and since the Nuclear power plant there was inundated with water following an earthquake and tsunami it’s an unlivable hell hole….but we needn’t worry, right? Wrong. We may not have many serious earthquakes… Read more »

hdavies15
hdavies15
7 months ago
Reply to  Cathy Jones

Perhaps more pertinent we might ask which days of the week do Plaid come out in favour of nuclear and on which days do they oppose it ?

Charles Coombes
Charles Coombes
7 months ago

The permanent jobs will mainly go to experts from outside North Wales.

Alan Jones
Alan Jones
7 months ago

“It has the potential to generate ten of thousands of highly skilled well paid jobs”. How many times have we heard this tired old trope before, then we see the opposite occur where only the relatively few people required to run/operate the operation remain on site & then as stated elsewhere “by experts from outside the area”. Never forget that included in these “tens of thousands” are financiers, numerous consultants, legal departments etc, all these are before Virginia gets to put her spade in the ground followed by the construction companies with their gangs of workers, nearly all will have… Read more »

Rhobert Davi8s
Rhobert Davi8s
7 months ago
Reply to  Alan Jones

Waw – Wales needs no inward investment let let the world pass us by.

Jonathan Dean
Jonathan Dean
6 months ago
Reply to  Alan Jones

Peak employment would be 9000 for 18 months of a 10 year build. 2000 would be “local” where local includes as far as Chester

Jonathan Dean
Jonathan Dean
6 months ago
Reply to  Alan Jones

If a fleet of SMRs are built they will operate them all remotely with only a skeleton breakdown crew on site

Adam Seddon
Adam Seddon
7 months ago

No. The guy who tiled our bathroom was one of the operational managers at Wilfa. I spoke to him about the SMRs, and he was willing to get back in to his industry.
Wales does have these skills, and it is a good opportunity for Wales to excel in the Nuclear industry.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
7 months ago

New Nuclear Power plants in Cymru, would lock us into the Union FOREVER.
Dim Diolch.

Rhobert Davi8s
Rhobert Davi8s
7 months ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

As things stand at the minute there is more chance of Carmarthenshire County Council putting a man or woman on the moon and returning him or her safely to planet earth. than Wales becoming an Independent nation. We are a country with insufficient infrastructure to service its own people, not enough hospitals, not enough airports a dire rail system and a major road network that needs upgrading. Without inward investment nothing will change.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
7 months ago
Reply to  Rhobert Davi8s

Ah, Inward Investment! That old beaut!!

Adam Sed
Adam Sed
7 months ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

Keep Wales real, by denying investment. Wow, you guys know how to keep yourselves in the past and your children behind all others.

Robert Parry
Robert Parry
7 months ago

Uk is the only country in the G 20 to have privatised both generators and distributors of energy suppliers. Tory politics have enriched foreign shareholders at the expense of Uk consumers. Hence the utilities “dash for gas” in the 70s that delivered Uk energy security into the hands of autocratic powers in the less stable areas of the globe. Only national governments have the ability to safely undertake long term commitments to funding nuclear energy.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
7 months ago

It seems like the politicians and the money behind them want more nuclear power but what do the people of Cymru want ?

To be forever the tool of England or to be their own forward looking country…

The Atomic Pussycat wants to be our gang master in perpetuity…

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
7 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

I’m minded of the poet’s words and use them against those who would force yet another life sentence upon us…Do not go gentle into that green glowing night…Old age should bring wisdom…Rage against the winning of the Right, Left and Centre (our political class all respond to the allure of money )

Jonathan Dean
Jonathan Dean
6 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

The money is keeping clear of Sizewell C

Silenced!
Silenced!
7 months ago

Ooooh the “opportunity” of tens of thousands of new nuclear jobs.
And of course the “opportunity” of cancer clusters, mutated wildlife and to have hostile powers assign us our very own thermonuclear missile.
Then the benefits of course of far cheaper houses, more vacant shops for small businesses to take up and fewer of those pesky tourists.
And of course, due to the shorter lifespans, we won’t have to save so much for our pensions!!!

Adam Seddon
Adam Seddon
7 months ago
Reply to  Silenced!

You need to take your tin hat off mate. The world has passed you by.along time ago.

Jonathan Dean
Jonathan Dean
6 months ago

The logical place in Wales is Port Talbot to produce heat and hydrogen for the steel works

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