"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.
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.”
Rt Hon Edward Davey MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, on the planning consent given to new nuclear build at Hinkley, 19 March 2013
"I want to talk about how government and industry can together put the UK at the forefront of the race to capture the benefits of the global nuclear market. There is a huge prize on offer from nuclear energy for our industrial strategy as a country – a boost for growth, thousands of highly skilled jobs, a vibrant supply chain. All built on world leading expertise.
Delivering new nuclear is not easy anywhere or at any time – but especially in the current financial climate. We have seen quite a year with some developers exiting and others entering. But ultimately, new nuclear in the UK will happen and we are close. It will happen because we need the energy security and affordability that nuclear offers in a low carbon energy system.”
Michael Fallon MP, Minister of State for Business and Enterprise & Minister of State for Energy, Energy Choices December 2012
“Successive Governments have created a broad consensus about the need to include nuclear in the future energy mix. This was driven by the need for energy security and in the face of tough climate change targets and volatile global prices.”
Vincent De Rivaz CBE, EDF Energy Chief Executive, 11 February 2013
“We really can't see a future for the UK energy sector, if we are to meet our climate change obligations and have resilience in the power sector, without a significant component of nuclear. A non-nuclear scenario is not one the government is thinking seriously about.”
Prof Sir John Beddington, Government Chief Scientific Adviser, 26 March 2013
“I remain confident that our UK nuclear facilities have no fundamental safety weaknesses. The Office for Nuclear Regulation already requires protection of nuclear sites against the worst-case scenarios that are predictable for the UK. But we are not complacent. Our philosophy is one of continuous improvement. No matter how high our standards, the quest for improvement must never stop. We will ensure lessons are learned from Fukushima. Action has already been taken in many cases, with work under way to further enhance safety at UK sites.“
Dr Mike Weightman, Chief Nuclear Inspector, Office for Nuclear Regulation, October 11 2011
"The threat of climate change means we need to make a transition from a system that relies heavily on high-carbon fossil fuels, to a radically different system that includes nuclear, renewable and clean coal power."
Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Labour Party, writing as Secretary of State for DECC, Consultation on draft National Policy Statements for Energy Infrastructure, December 2009
"Including nuclear power in the energy mix will make a low-carbon and energy-secure future easier to achieve."
Chris Goodall, Green Party Parliamentary candidate, Independent, February 23 2009
"I feel very strongly that we need to reduce our dependence on imported energy, much of which comes from some of the world’s most unstable regions. That means nuclear power, a greater use of liquefied natural gas, and more research into predictable renewable sources such as tidal power and into carbon capture and ‘clean coal’ technologies."
Dan Byles MP, Energy and Climate Change Select Committee, June 2010
"The Government has today concluded that nuclear should have a role to play in the generation of electricity, alongside other low carbon technologies."
Rt Hon. Gordon Brown, MP, then Prime Minister, DECC, Meeting the Energy Challenge – A White Paper on Nuclear Power, January 2008
"Nuclear power, as part of a balanced and mixed supply of energy, is essential for this country if we are to have energy security at a time when traditional sources are threatened or in short supply. To remain economically competitive, we must be able to ensure a consistent and affordable supply of power reaches our businesses."
David Frost, British Chambers of Commerce, January 2008
"Nuclear power is our only workable low-carbon energy source."
Environmentalist George Monbiot, Guardian, October 19 2009
"The issue that has primarily changed my mind is the absolute imperative of reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Fifteen years ago we knew less about climate change. We knew it was likely to happen, we didn’t quite realise how fast. What’s happened is that we’ve woken up to the very serious nature of the climate-change problem, the essential task of reducing carbon dioxide emissions and the need to decarbonise electricity production over the course of the next 20 to 30 years."
Lord (Chris) Smith of Finsbury, Chairman, Environment Agency, Independent, February 23, 2009
"The tipping point for me was in August 2005 when it was reported that large parts of the Siberian permafrost were melting, giving off large quantities of methane. That was when I came to the gradual conclusion that nuclear power needed to be reconsidered. There are serious issues with nuclear power, but they are not as serious as a 6°C change in the climate. Now I believe the climate crisis is so great we must do all we can to try to control it. Nuclear power stations are not zero-carbon, they are low-carbon, and by building more of them we will probably cut our emissions by 10 to 15 per cent. So it is not the whole answer but it is essential we do something fast."
Stephen Tindale, former Executive Director, Greenpeace, The Sun, February 24 2009