The Forty by ’50 report published by the NIA UK outlines six essential steps as part of their Nuclear Roadmap to be taken in 2020 to turn the UK governments net zero aspirations into reality:
There needs to be a facilitative programme including siting and licensing proposal for new small reactor technology including a national policy statement.
The stimulate investment in new capacity and reduce capital costs there needs to be an appropriate funding model in place for nuclear new builds.
Nuclear new build project needs to work to reduce capital costs of construction and establish excellence in delivery.
Industry and government should agree a framework and commitments, focused on cross-sector collaboration outside traditional electricity production including the production of medical isotopes, hydrogen, and synthetic fuels for transport, along with heat applications including district heating and agriculture and storage technologies.
There needs to be a clear statement from the UK government in the long-term commitment to new nuclear power.
The 2030 targets of the Nuclear Sector Deal (part of the government’s industrial strategy) should be maintained, including cost reduction targets for 30 per cent for new build and 20 per cent for decommissioning, a 40 per cent female workforce, and £2 billion of domestic and international contracts for the UK supply chain.
“Net zero needs nuclear, and the sector is developing fast,” says Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the NIA. “The next large-scale projects are now deliverable much more cheaply by building on repeat and tried and tested designs, capturing learnings from our new build programme, and making important changes to the way projects are financed.
“We’re confident the price of nuclear power will fall from the £92.50 per megawatt hour for the first plant, closer to £60/MWh for the next wave of power stations reducing to around £40/MWh for further reactors.
“Greenlighting new projects already in the pipeline would trigger a ramp-up in investment and job creation in parts of the UK facing the biggest economic challenges and clear the way for long term decarbonisation through the hydrogen economy, helping establish the UK nuclear sector as global leader in the field.
“Commitment to the roll-out of smaller and advanced reactors would build on that momentum. Conversely, if we do nothing, we are effectively sitting on a winning hand for a greener future.”
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