Hitachi scraps £16bn nuclear power station in Wales

Japanese giant unable to agree deal with UK as fears grow for Anglesey atomic plant
• Does this mean the end of UK’s new nuclear dream?

Hitachi has scrapped plans to build a nuclear power station in Wales, becoming the second firm in two months to abandon a major nuclear project and triggering “a full-blown crisis” for the UK energy’s strategy.

The £16bn Wylfa plant on Anglesey was meant to be the next in a line of new nuclear plants behind Hinkley Point C but the Japanese conglomerate failed to reach a deal with the UK government.

A Hitachi board meeting pulled the plug on mounting costs on Thursday, and the company said it would take a 300bn yen (£2.14bn) hit from axing Wylfa.

The decision is a serious blow to the government’s energy policy and hopes of attracting major investments post-Brexit.

Unions expressed dismay over the cancellation, which will involve around 300 job losses at Hitachi’s UK subsidiary, Horizon Nuclear Power, and around a thousand more in the supply chain. It will also mean thousands of anticipated construction jobs do not materialise.

The death knell for Wylfa also spells doom for hopes of a second Hitachi plant at Oldbury in Gloucestershire.

Duncan Hawthorne, CEO of Horizon Nuclear Power, said that the company had been unable to reach a deal in talks with London and Tokyo.

“I am very sorry to say that despite the best efforts of everyone involved we’ve not been able to reach an agreement to the satisfaction of all concerned.

“As a result we will be suspending the development of the Wylfa Newydd project, as well as work related to Oldbury, until a solution can be found. In the meantime we will take steps to reduce our presence but keep the option to resume development in future.”

Original Source

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