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New Wylfa will cost £14-17bn to build and won’t be ready until 2030s

24 May 2022 3 minutes Read
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Picture by Annika Haas (CC BY 2.0). Wylfa Power Station. Picture: Andrew Woodvine (CC BY-SA 2.0)

A new Wylfa will cost between £14 and £17bn to build and won’t be up and running until the 2030s, the UK Government have been told.

Sources told the Times newspaper that the 2.3-gigawatt plant would take six years to build, on top of a lengthy planning and regulatory process, meaning that it would not be operational until the early years of the next decade.

Westinghouse and Bechtel, the reactor maker and engineering group, are hoping to win UK Government backing for their plan to build two reactors at Wylfa on Anglesey.

Their AP1000 reactor design has already completed initial safety approval for use in Britain.

However, Bechtel were hoping to secure £20m from the UK Government before being able to provide a full breakdown of the total costs of the project.

Ivan Baldwin, head of the UK civil nuclear market for Bechtel, told the Times that this taxpayer funding would enable the developer to “provide to the government an estimated project cost” and “to determine the optimum construction schedule at the site”.

Hitachi, of Japan, currently own the rights to the Wylfa site after giving up on their own plans to build a nuclear power plant there.

‘Insult’

Boris Johnson has used his speech at the Welsh Conservative party conference last week to also announce that a new nuclear reactor will be coming to Trawsfynydd, Gwynedd.

“Today I can tell you that we’re looking to build another small modular reactor on the site at Trawsfynydd,” he said, describing it as “fantastic news”.

Dylan Morgan from People Against Wylfa B (PAWB) responded to the announcement to say that Boris Johnson was just “shooting from the hip”.

“All his bluster about possible new nuclear reactors displays an astounding level of economic and environmental illiteracy,” he said.

“Firstly, where is the strong economy coming out of Covid and post Brexit? No nuclear companies will go it alone and invest heavily in building new nuclear reactors.

“As in the case of Rolls Royce and their modular reactor which isn’t small at all at 475 MW, bigger than the old Magnox reactors at Trawsfynydd, they want government public handouts for designing the reactors, more astronomic handouts financed through our already vastly inflated electricity bills to construct these radiotoxic monstrosities, and then even more handouts for an agreed price for electricity produced, and last but not at all least, the massive decommissioning costs over thousands of years of reactors and all the problems with storage of hazardous nuclear wastes.

“There is little wonder that no corporations have come forward in droves to get a nuclear renaissance much promised from the Blair/Brown era going.

“Labelling Wylfa and Trawsfynydd as possible new sites for this most dangerous, dirty, radiotoxic, health-threatening and expensive technology is an insult to the people of Wales.

“It is the totally wrong path to tread and it may be the case that Johnson will not be in office for too long to realise his madcap nuclear ambitions.”


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Richard 1
Richard 1
1 month ago

“fantastic news” ? Yes, fantasy, Boris. You never spoke a truer word.

Lebowski
Lebowski
1 month ago

UK won’t exist by 2030

Jason
Jason
1 month ago

So taking into account the rate of progress with anything in this country it should
(possibly?) be up and completely running by 2061/2.

Hywel
Hywel
1 month ago

Are the Welsh Government really going to let this proceed? Do they have any say over Nuclear reactors being built in Wales???

SundanceKid
SundanceKid
1 month ago
Reply to  Hywel

They don’t, but they should still speak up against it as loudly and as vehemenently as possible. Small modular reactors we can probably live with, but full scale nuclear reactors need to be resisted in the strongest terms.

Quornby
Quornby
1 month ago

Mmm that’ll be £34billion then and cancelled before completion.

Geraint
Geraint
1 month ago

So the state through our taxes will pay for the initial planning. This will tell us how much it will all cost. No doubt there will be increased costs as the build proceeds if our past experiences are anything to go by. Then a very generous unit cost (Strike point) for the electricity if the deal at Hinckley Point is repeated, again subsidised by the tax payers and bill payers. It will be interesting to hear who will cover the decommissioning costs. In the mean time all the costs for the other renewables will probably fall making an expensive plan… Read more »

Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

S, Hitachi pulls out because of cost, and the Gov plans to pay for initial costs, just as Jacob Rees Mogg has said he is scrapping the gov tender process, to make life easier for business when tendering for gov contracts. Who is going to be the next in line, in the list of friends and family, after profiteering from PPE, to make money out of this. Strange how we have no money to develop tidal power projects put forward by the gov of Cymru, but bags of cash elsewhere.

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
1 month ago

At least the English are building a nuclear power station for us so we can charge them for electricity when we get independence before 2030. How nice of them, the f’ing thieves.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

Would you believe this pathalogical liar? Only a fool would! #ConservativeIdiocracy #BorisJohnson #BankruptBritain #QuantitativeEasing 🤡 🇬🇧

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
Cynan
Cynan
1 month ago

Still cheaper and faster than renovating Wasteminster.
Is this an EnglandAndWales project so English taxpayers will also fund this thing we do not want?

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
1 month ago

…part funded by Qatar, who will no doubt be making a massive profit from this. They are know to be funders of terrorists like ISIS, Hamas, Al Qaida, Al Nusra etc. so it doesn’t take a genius to work out where some of our energy bill money will be going! Obviously our security means little to Boris Johnson and the Tories – as long as there is money to be made! I am so surprised that nobody else seems to have picked up on this, not even Plaid Cymru or Welsh Labour have made any noise about it. Come on… Read more »

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