Government guarantees £2billion in Hinkley funding

An artist's impression of the Hinkley Point C site.

An artist's impression of the Hinkley Point C site. - Credit: Archant

THE Government has given the future of the Hinkley Point C power station a boost by issuing billions of pounds in funding for the project.

Chancellor George Osborne confirmed on Monday that a £2billion guarantee would be issued to help pave the way for a final decision about investing in the proposed nuclear power station from energy company EDF Energy and Chinese nuclear corporations.

Hinkley, near Bridgwater, would be the first nuclear power plant built in the UK for 20 years and could create thousands of jobs across Somerset – benefiting people living in Weston-super-Mare.

Mr Osborne’s announcement was welcomed by Somerset County Council. Its deputy leader David Hall said: “This is yet another major milestone for the Hinkley Point C project, which will bring significant benefits to Somerset’s economy, communities and infrastructure.

“Today’s news marks another important step forward and we remain confident Hinkley Point C will go ahead and now await the final investment decision.”

EDF Energy’s chief executive Vincent de Rivaz said this week: “The Chancellor’s approval of the infrastructure guarantee is a clear sign of the Government’s commitment to Hinkley Point C.

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“It is further progress towards a final investment decision on a project which will provide reliable, affordable low carbon electricity for decades.”

However, the Hinkley project has been criticised by pressure groups campaigning to stop National Grid from building a selection of pylons between Hinkley and Avonmouth, rather than burying the electricity cables underground.

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Paul Hipwell is chair of the No Moor Pylons group, based in Yatton.

He said: “It is inconceivable that any Government should forge ahead with an outdated 1920s solution of new connections defaulting to pylon solutions, when out-of-sight solutions are now affordable.”

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