Prime Minister urged to site new nuclear power plant on Anglesey
The Chair of Westminster’s Welsh Affairs Committee has written to the Prime Minister seeking a commitment to build a new nuclear power plant at Wylfa on Anglesey.
Stephen Crabb has also raised concerns about the lack of progress on the UK Government’s British Energy Security Strategy, which was published last April and outlined plans for a significant expansion in the number of nuclear power stations.
In his letter, written ahead of the Spring Budget, Mr Crabb has outlined representations made to the Committee’s ‘Nuclear energy in Wales’ inquiry.
MPs have collected evidence from a wide range of stakeholders, many of whom are calling for greater clarity on how the UK Government will meet its aims to generate 24GW of nuclear energy by 2050; and arguing for the swift establishment of Great British Nuclear to drive the programme forward.
The Preseli Pembrokeshire MP wants the UK Government’s next nuclear power station, after Hinkley Point C and Sizewell C, to be built at Wylfa on Anglesey, stating that by doing so, highly skilled and well-paid long-term jobs will be brought to a rural area.
Mr Crabb said: “The UK Government’s British Energy Security Strategy sent positive demand signals to the nuclear energy sector. But since its publication in April last year, we have heard very little as to how the target to generate 24GW of nuclear energy by 2050 will be accomplished.
“Nuclear energy could hold the answer to reliable baseload as we transition away from oil and gas. With mounting household bills and the spiralling costs of fossil fuels, there is a unique opportunity to galvanise the low-carbon energy sectors.
Instead, the nuclear energy sector has been waiting to know the ‘when and where’ for nuclear power stations in the UK.
“By siting the UK’s next nuclear power station at Wylfa, highly skilled, long-term jobs will be supported in a rural area of the UK. I urge the UK Government to act now, and to launch Great British Nuclear to drive progress forwards.”
Last year, Rolls-Royce confirmed it wanted to site a new mini nuclear reactor in the north of Wales.
Reports suggested it was considering buying the Wylfa site outright from Hitachi, which abandoned plans to build a large reactor there two years ago after failing to reach a funding deal with the UK Government on the construction and start-up costs of the plant.
The original Wylfa power station became operational in 1971 and started decommissioning in 2015.
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