The third and final phase of the Future Electricity Series kicked off on 11 November 2013 with a morning conference examining the role of nuclear power in the UK's power sector. Over 80 guests from across the sector heard from our expert speakers, including representatives from the National Nuclear Laboratory, EDF Energy, the UK Energy Research Centre, Costain, GE Hitachi and the National Skills Academy for Nuclear. Inquiry Co-chairs Baroness Worthington and Charles Hendry MP led a panel discussion followed by breakout sessions, which will contribute to a final research report due in early 2014.
Topics explored at the event included costs and affordability, UK skills and supply chain and future reactor and fuel cycle options. The event provided a timely opportunity to discuss recent developments including agreement between the Government and EDF regarding the strike price for the first new nuclear power station, Hinkley Point C.
“We can genuinely now say that the UK is on the threshold of a nuclear renaissance…This has been achieved through cross-party support. When you read the newspapers, you could be forgiven for thinking that there is no cross-party support for any aspect of energy policy. But that is simply not true. There are significant areas where there remains strong cross-party agreement, and perhaps for nuclear more than most.”
Charles Hendry MP, Future Electricity Series Co-Chair
“Whilst we are poised to see a nuclear renaissance, there are some hard questions that the industry needs to answer. These include the design of reactors, and how safe and affordable they can be in future.”
Baroness Worthington, Future Electricity Series Co-Chair
Charles Hendry MP
Nigel Knee, EDF Nuclear New Build
Adrian Bull, National Nuclear Laboratory
Charles Bray, National Skills Academy for Nuclear
Prof Jim Watson, UK Energy Research Centre
Ian Graves, Costain
David Powell, GE Hitachi Nuclear Power Plants
The Future Electricity Series is kindly sponsored by IGEM.