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HORIZON NEWS - 18.06.2020

Horizon welcomes report showing importance of nuclear to net zero

Horizon Nuclear Power has today welcomed the ‘Nuclear for Net Zero’ report from the independent Energy Systems Catapult which sets out the key role nuclear can play in helping the UK meet its climate change goals.

The report, which is based on an extensive whole system analysis by the energy and clean growth Catapult, shows that an optimised approach to delivering a Net Zero energy system includes a significant proportion of new nuclear capacity. Beginning with at least 10GW (additional to Hinkley Point C) of new build from established reactor designs – such as the ABWR, Horizon’s tried and tested technology – the report goes on to describe how nuclear could also play a big part in driving the growth of the hydrogen economy and providing district heating, placing the sector at the heart of deep decarbonisation across the UK.
 
Commenting on the report, Horizon Chief Executive Duncan Hawthorne said: “This report shows yet again how nuclear, alongside other clean technologies, can and must be part of the UK’s low carbon future. The analysis also, rightly, sets out the challenge to the industry in terms of cost reduction and we are confident – given our proven design and world leading partners – we can deliver against this.”  
 
“It also goes to the heart of why we are determined to try and ensure that our development at Wylfa Newydd is restarted. An operational Wylfa Newydd will provide enough clean electricity to meet all of Wales’ power demand, domestic and industrial. This would, effectively, make Wales’ electricity supply Net Zero by the early 2030s, delivering on the UK Government’s pledge decades early, and also helping to answer the Welsh Government’s declaration of a Climate Change Emergency.”
 
“Providing such a significant step towards hitting our national climate change goals, whilst also triggering a huge economic boost to Anglesey, North Wales and the UK, shows why Wylfa Newydd is too important not to deliver.”
 
 
Ends
 
 
For more information, please contact:
          
Ben Russell
07580 948 106
ben.russell@horizonnuclearpower.com


Ifer Gwyn
07909 906 443
ifer.gwyn@horizonnuclearpower.com 
 
Notes to Editors:
 
1.     Horizon was established in 2009 following the UK Government’s announcement that new nuclear energy would be a core element of the future electricity mix. The company was acquired by Hitachi, Ltd. in late 2012 and owns two of the eight sites designated in the UK for new build in the National Policy Statement for Nuclear Power Generation[1]. Up until January 2019 it was actively developing its lead site, Wylfa Newydd on Anglesey, North Wales and had planned to provide at least 5,400MW of new power station capacity to the UK – enough to power some 10 million homes – across the two sites, with Oldbury in South Gloucestershire following on from Wylfa Newydd. The sites would have each seen the deployment of two Hitachi-GE UK Advanced Boiling Water Reactors (UK ABWRs), each generating around 1,350MW.
 
2.     In January 2019, following a decision by its parent company, Hitachi, Ltd., Horizon announced that it was suspending its nuclear development programme and has now stopped the vast majority of its development activities.[2] This followed seven years of very significant investment from Hitachi and intense work across all areas of development, which meant that Horizon was actively preparing to be the next nuclear new build project in the UK to enter construction.
 
3.     The final component required to move from development into construction was agreement on the funding and financing for Wylfa Newydd. In June 2018 the Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy made a Statement[3] to Parliament announcing that the Government and Horizon were entering formal negotiations with the possibility of HMG taking a direct equity stake in the project. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of all parties, acting within their own specific constraints (e.g. commercial position, balance sheet restrictions, existing policy etc.), it was not possible to reach a deal that worked for all sides. This, ultimately, led to the decision to suspend activities as the project was not fully funded.
 
4.     Following the suspension decision, Horizon has continued to actively pursue the conditions necessary to support a restart of the project, including a funding model that fully incorporates the lessons learned from the previous phase of its project development.