Sizewell C and water
In July 2022, the Development Consent Order (DCO) for Sizewell C was approved by the UK Government bringing us closer to delivering reliable, low carbon energy for six million homes across the UK. Since the DCO was granted, questions have been posed from our local community over our Water Supply Strategy for the project which we are pleased to provide an update on, in liaison with Northumbrian Water Group and Anglian Water Group.
East Suffolk is increasingly dry because of climate change and plans to tackle this are outlined in The Regional Plan - Water Resources East (wre.org.uk). Water Resources East (WRE) has predicted that by 2050 the East of England will require a significant amount of new water to support the region than is currently used today. It has identified various solutions and has noted desalination to be potentially part of the set of long term solutions.
Sizewell C has a clear plan for providing all the water the project needs without impacting local supplies.
Our water strategy includes a temporary desalination plant on the main construction site, away from both Sizewell Marshes SSSI and Sizewell beach, to deliver all the water the project needs.
Desalination is the process of removing salt and other minerals from sea water to create water to the quality required – e.g. potable drinking-quality or industrial grade water. The temporary desalination plant would provide a reliable, continuous source of water while a permanent water transfer main is completed.
Operating continuously, the temporary plant, powered by low carbon electricity, could produce up to 4,000m3 of potable grade water a day. Water production will be in response to construction demand and generally substantially less than this.
In the longer term, we are working with Northumbrian Water Group (trading locally as Essex and Suffolk Water) to develop new permanent supply schemes to offer a legacy benefit to East Suffolk.
By developing a desalination plant for the construction phase Sizewell C can help the UK Water Industry pilot the technology to tackle the effects of climate change which will also lead to developing new skills in the region required for the plant.”