3rd October 2014
South West Conservative MEP, Ashley Fox, has today challenged the Commission to accept the need for a new generation of Nuclear Reactors in the UK and support the Hinkley Point C reactor in Somerset.
Hinkley Point has been the subject of a lengthy investigation by officials within the Competition Commission as to whether the funding package for the new reactor constitutes ‘state aid’ and is therefore illegal under EU law. Last month, a spokesman for Mr Almunia, the Competition Commissioner, announced that they would be recommending that the College of Commissioners rule in favour of giving Hinkley Point the go ahead.
“This new reactor will provide enough low-carbon electricity to meet some 7% of the UK’s current electricity needs, and although it will take 10 years to build it is expected to have an operational lifetime of 60 years,” argues Mr Fox.
“I warmly welcome this support from Mr Almunia. Europe urgently needs to invest in more nuclear power in order to reduce our carbon emissions and to provide affordable, secure supplies of electricity. Though renewable energy technologies such as wind and solar do have a role in diversifying the overall energy mix, in comparison with nuclear energy they are intermittent and cannot provide a continuous flow of electricity that modern society needs.”
“Some political parties might prefer us to return to the dark ages but I have written to the commission urging them to see the light and not to interfere in the ability of the UK to decide our own energy mix.”
Picture: Ashley Fox MEP pictured with David Eccles, Head of the Bridgewater Office for EDF Energy, at Hinkley Point