29 Mar 12

EDF Energy statement following today’s announcement about Horizon

Following today’s announcement regarding Horizon, Vincent de Rivaz, chief executive of EDF Energy, said: “EDF Energy and Centrica remain focused on our project and nothing has changed with regard to that. We are determined to make UK new nuclear a success.

“The UK needs investment in a diverse mix of energy sources including nuclear, gas and renewables. EDF Energy is investing in all three and will commission a new 1300MW CCGT plant in Nottinghamshire in September and the 62MW Teeside Offshore Windfarm before the end of the year.

“With our partner Centrica we are progressing a strong and credible new nuclear project.

“We are making progress on all fronts towards taking the Final Investment Decision at the end of this year, as planned, on the UK’s first two new nuclear plants at Hinkley Point.

“Clearly that decision depends on having a profitable project which meets the financial targets. This in turn depends on agreeing, as soon as practicable, the contract for difference through transitional arrangements. These transitional arrangements are a key part of the Electricity Market Reform and have been introduced to allow investors to take timely decisions.

“The Government’s framework for Electricity Market Reform must ensure we have a project which is good for consumers, policy makers, jobs and investors.

“We cannot comment on the factors behind the decisions of EON and RWE, which they themselves say relate to the specific financial positions of their two companies and to the consequences of the decision by the German government regarding nuclear.

“Indeed EON and RWE have said that they believe that nuclear power has an important role to play in the UK’s future energy mix. We are confident that the projects at Wylfa and Oldbury will be part of this mix.

“For our part, we have made significant progress which demonstrates our determination to make new nuclear a success. We are getting on with the job. We are bringing together the efforts of our own people, suppliers including Areva, Government and the local community.”

Recent milestones on the Hinkley Point C project include:

  • Last week we began site preparation work at Hinkley Point C. This followed permission from the local authorities last year.
  • Following three years of consultation EDF Energy submitted its application for a Development Consent Order to the Infrastructure Planning Commission in October 2011. The IPC has begun its assessment and is expected to make its decisions later this year.
  • We have continued our engagement with the supply chain and in December 2011 held our third National Supply Chain event involving more than 350 companies. We have let contracts including a £100 million-plus contract to Kier Bam for civils work to prepare the site.
  • Following four years of work by EDF and Areva, in December 2011 the joint regulators (Office for Nuclear Regulation and Environment Agency) issued interim design acceptance confirmation for the EPR Pressurized Water Reactor, describing this themselves as a major milestone in the process.
  • We are developing the skills and jobs to deliver the project. The project will employ up to 25,000 people over the course of construction with 5,600 people on site at peak. There are already in excess of 700 people in UK and France working on the Hinkley Point C project. We have announced a £15 million investment to develop a world class training centre in Somerset.