Ministers fuel Sizewell C plans

Talks on a proposed Sizewell C nuclear power station are expected to intensify following publication of the govern-ment's vision for future energy provision.

Talks on a proposed Sizewell C nuclear power station are expected to intensify following publication of the govern-ment's vision for future energy provision.

The formal government endorsement of a future built on a combination of nuclear power and renewable technologies will be welcomed by a UK nuclear industry which has been in the doldrums for four years - since the government appeared to rule out further nuclear development.

The U-turn in policy has been led by prime minister Tony Blair, set against increasing evidence that action must be taken to reduce global-warming emissions and a predicted major shortfall in electricity supply unless new “base-load” power plants are built.

All of the UK's nuclear plants, except Sizewell B, are due to reach the end of their operating lifetimes by 2020.

Sizewell A and Bradwell, together with several more of the first-generation Magnox plants built in the 1960s, have already ceased electricity generation.

Charles Barnett, chairman of the Shut Down Sizewell Campaign, said more nuclear power stations would create a “foolhardy” and more-dangerous future.

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“What is five or six years for a proper public inquiry against the 240,000 years our descendants will have to deal with radioactive waste?” he said.

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