AGRs plus Sizewell B are the cheapest and most productive low-carbon assets in British history
The UK’s existing nuclear stations have saved £110 billion worth of carbon at current prices, according to new analysis by the Nuclear Industry Association. The figure is based on the 1.4 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions saved by the AGR stations and Sizewell B, making them the greenest assets in British history.
The emissions saving is worth £110 billion at today’s carbon price of £78.86 per tonne. As the UK heads towards net zero the carbon price is only projected to rise steadily.
Nuclear is also currently the cheapest source of energy on the market with the stations providing electricity at £45/MWh. This at a time when spot prices for gas-fired electricity have hit £4000/MWh.
The analysis comes as the Business Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, visits Sizewell B and the proposed site for the Sizewell C station in Suffolk, which has today received £100 million in Government funding to support its continued development, marking a big step forward for the project.
Commenting on the analysis, Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Industry Association said,
“Nuclear power is making an enormous contribution to society, saving us emissions and money. But we can only sustain this contribution if we build new nuclear power stations that will provide the firm, low-carbon power we need for net zero. The UK needs nuclear, not foreign gas, to be the backbone of our energy system.”
Notes to Editors
- The emissions saving figure is based a fuel substitution calculation derived from official historical electricity data: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/historical-electricity-data. The UK grid used a significant amount of coal, raising its overall carbon intensity, until the mid-2010s.
- Government projections on carbon prices are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/valuing-greenhouse-gas-emissions-in-policy-appraisal/valuation-of-greenhouse-gas-emissions-for-policy-appraisal-and-evaluation
- The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) confirms that nuclear has the lowest lifecycle carbon of all technologies and the lowest land use and lowest mining and metal use of all low carbon technologies.
- The UK has six generating nuclear power stations, providing around 16% of the country’s electricity.
- Nuclear has saved the UK 2.32 billion tonnes of carbon emissions, far more than any other source. The saving is equivalent to all UK emissions from 2015 through 2020.
- Three stations will retire by March 2024, and all but one will retire by 2030.
About the Nuclear Industry Association
As the trade association for the civil nuclear industry in the UK, the Nuclear Industry Association represents more than 200 companies across the UK’s nuclear supply chain.
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