HORIZON NEWS - 25.09.2020

Open letter from Duncan Hawthorne, Chief Executive Officer, Horizon Nuclear Power, to the communities of Anglesey and North Wales.

Last week Hitachi, Ltd. took the difficult decision to stop its nuclear development activities in the UK.

I am writing to thank the communities, organisations and individuals in North Wales who have worked with Horizon Nuclear Power to develop the Wylfa Newydd power station on Anglesey over a number of years, and to reiterate Horizon’s commitment to exploring future options for the site.

Hitachi’s decision has not been taken lightly and I know it is a huge disappointment for those who wanted to see the project succeed, bringing a bright future of jobs, skills, investment, and decarbonisation.

We have been fortunate enough over the years to have had close collaboration with local and national Government in Wales, community councils, schools, colleges, trade unions, the business sector and a host of other organisations including regulators, environmental organisations and essential public service providers.

I would like to thank the new Member of Parliament for Ynys Môn, Virginia Crosbie who has worked tirelessly to further the prospects for Wylfa Newydd since the 2019 general election. I would like to specifically acknowledge the sustained effort, constructive challenge and support from the Leader of The Isle of Anglesey County Council, Cllr Llinos Medi Huws, its members and cabinet including Major Projects and Economic Development portfolio holder Cllr Carwyn Jones, Rhun ap Iorwerth MS, the former MP Albert Owen and at the national level Ken Skates MS, Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales.

In pursuing our goals we have had overwhelming support and professional collaboration. We do not take that for granted. All of our counterparties have been motivated by the desire to ensure a development on the scale of Wylfa Newydd would be managed responsibly in partnership with the host community, and bring benefits for generations to come.

I believe we would have achieved just that, but this time it was not to be. I also believe this is not the end of the story.

The case for nuclear power development in the UK is getting stronger, not weaker. The breadth and scale of economic benefits it can bring regionally are transformational, and right now, with the pandemic challenges we all face, they are needed more than ever. Meanwhile the United Kingdom has committed to become a Net Zero climate emissions economy and this needs wide ranging and ambitious action starting today.

The Wylfa Newydd site remains the best in the UK, if not the whole of Europe, for new nuclear power development. And between ourselves and North Wales community representatives we have decades of learning in how to collaborate to deliver a large-scale project with mutual benefits.

I cannot say today what the next steps will be. What I can tell you is that I, and my team at Horizon, will do our utmost, along with our stakeholders and supporters, to make sure the opportunities that Wylfa Newydd represents, can still be taken.

Thank you
Duncan Hawthorne
Chief Executive Officer
Horizon Nuclear Power