For Immediate Release

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Greenpeace UK:
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Hinkley Deal Makes No Economic Sense: Greenpeace

LONDON - Commenting on the agreement struck by French-owned EDF and China’s CGN on Wednesday to build a fleet of new nuclear reactors at Hinkley and other two locations in the UK, Greenpeace UK chief scientist Dr Doug Parr said:

 “With this deal George Osborne is not so much backing the wrong horse as betting billions of consumers’ money on a nag running backwards. There’s no end in sight for the nuclear industry’s dependence on billion-pound handouts whilst the renewable sector is on the verge of going subsidy free. Backing the former and punishing the latter makes no economic sense whatsoever. Our grandchildren will one day wonder why their bills are propping up a foreign-owned, outdated, and costly nuclear industry instead of supporting cutting-edge UK firms producing cheap clean energy. There’s no other reason for the government to go through with this rotten deal but saving George Osborne’s face.”

Key facts:

  • The UK government has committed to paying Hinkley’s owners a fixed price of £92.50 for every megawatt/hour produced at the plant - or £89.50 if the Sizewell reactor goes ahead too - for 35 years. This is nearly twice the current market price for electricity.
  • All EDF’s other attempts to build Hinkley-style EPR nuclear plants in other countries are running behind schedule. Construction of the EPR reactor at Flamanville began in 2007 and EDF has now asked for permission to push back the start date to 2020. The EPR Okiluoto reactor in Finland was supposed to start in 2009 andmight now come online in 2018.

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