GB News: Dan Wootton discusses nuclear energy plan

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Business Secretary Grant Shapps announced in the House of Commons on Tuesday that the Sizewell C nuclear power plant will create at least 10,000 jobs during its construction after the project finally got given the green light. The plant, located in Suffolk, will also generate thousands more jobs in the supply chain, the Business Secretary added as he made the announcement which could bring a huge energy boost to the UK’s energy independence. 

 

Mr Shapps said in the Commons: “The development of Sizewell C nuclear plant has been given the green light, will not only generate cleaner, cheaper low carbon electricity to the equivalent of six million homes, but will also generate 10,000 jobs during construction and thousands more in the supply chain”.

Supporters of Sizewell have long been calling for the plant’s construction to begin, and today’s announcement has confirmed a £700,000 contribution from the Government. According to ministers, the move to take a 50 percent stake in the project’s development will help to provide “reliable low-carbon power” for over 50 years in a major win for the UK’s energy security.

It comes as Britain’s crippling addiction to fossil fuels has laid bare its vulnerability to the volatile international gas market which remains largely at the mercy of Russian President Vladimir Putin due to Russia’s huge control over supplies. 

While Britain only got four percent of its gas from Russia last year, when Moscow curtailed supplies to Europe (which got 40 percent of its gas from Russia before the Ukraine war), it hiked up wholesale global gas prices and had a huge impact on UK billpayers, who are now paying double the amount for their energy compared with last year on average. 

 

The Government has pinpointed nuclear energy as having a key role to play in weaning the UK of foreign fossil fuel imports, arguing it can boost Britain’s energy independence while also helping it to race to net zero by 2050. 

As part of its energy strategy unveiled in April, which heavily focused on a number of policies that could help weaken Russia’s grip on UK energy prices, the Government set a target of significantly scaling up nuclear so that it will account for 25 percent of the country’s projected electricity demand by 2040. 

The strategy noted that Sizewell C is critically important for helping the UK reach its nuclear targets, and it has been engaging in negotiations regarding the project’s construction since January 2021. 

The plant, which has been described as being the most advanced out of the pending nuclear projects yet to come online, would be a replica of Hinkley Point C. This Somerset-based is also set to power six million homes for around 60 years, but could provide up to 25,000 jobs.

 

But while Sizewell C’s advocates argue that it will bring a huge boost to the UK’s energy independence, its critics have raised the alarm of China’s involvement in the project.

This is a breaking story. More to follow.

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