New nuclear station will help free UK from gas imports with clean, reliable, British power
1 September 2022 – The Government’s decision to earmark £700 million for the Sizewell C nuclear power plant is a welcome and timely boost for British energy security, according to the Nuclear Industry Association (NIA).
Sizewell C, alongside its twin station Hinkley Point C, will prevent more gas burning than any other project in the country.
The two-reactor plant on the Suffolk coast will generate 3.2 gigawatts (GW) of clean electricity, enough to power six million homes and displace around 5.4 billion cubic metres of gas use each year.
By cutting gas consumption, Sizewell will help free the UK from its dependence on volatile fossil fuel markets, which have pushed up daily electricity prices to an average of £370/MWh for the last month.
Sizewell C will also have a lifecycle carbon footprint of just 5.5g CO2 equivalent per kWh of generation, and will sustain 70,000 jobs across the UK, thousands of local jobs, and billions of pounds of investment in the regional economy.
Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Industry Association, has welcomed the decision:
“This announcement is another important step toward starting construction at Sizewell C, cutting gas, cutting bills and creating stable, secure well-paid jobs for people up and down the country.
“The next Government should sustain this momentum by giving nuclear the green label it deserves in the sustainable investment taxonomy and getting Sizewell C over the line. Sizewell C should be the start on a new era of nuclear construction to ensure our energy security for the rest of the century.”
Notes to editors
- The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) found that nuclear has the lowest lifecycle carbon of all technologies, the lowest land use of all low-carbon technologies and the lowest lifecycle impact on ecosystems of any electricity technology. Read the full report here.
- August 2022 saw the highest day-ahead auction electricity prices in history. The average price of £370/MWh for the month was 48% higher than the previous record of £250/MWh for March 2022, and 248% more than the average price of £106/MWh for August 2021. August 26 was the most expensive on record at £571.09/MWh. Day-ahead auction prices are available from Nord Pool: https://www.nordpoolgroup.com/en/Market-data1/GB/Auction-prices/UK/Daily/?view=table
- The UK has five generating nuclear power stations, providing around 16% of the country’s electricity from 5.9 GW of capacity.
- Two stations will retire by March 2024, and all but one will retire by March 2028.
- Nuclear has saved the UK 2.3 billion tonnes of carbon emissions, far more than any other source. The saving is equivalent to all UK emissions from 2015 through 2020.
About the Nuclear Industry Association
As the trade association for the civil nuclear industry in the UK, the Nuclear Industry Association represents more than 250 companies across the UK’s nuclear supply chain.
For further information, please contact:
Iolo James, Media & Communications Manager