The government is reviewing the construction of a new nuclear power station in Suffolk. It could be delayed, or even cancelled, according to the BBC.
Sizewell C was predicted to supply up to 7% of the UK’s electricity needs. However, critics claim it will be costly and difficult to construct.
Another possibility is the demise of a new high-speed rail line in northern England.
A government official said to the BBC that they are currently reviewing all major projects, including Sizewell C.
At the Autumn Statement, on 17 November, Rishi Sunak, the new Prime Minister of India will unveil his spending and tax plans.
Negotiations for raising funds to finance Sizewell C are ongoing, it is believed. It is unlikely that it will start generating electricity before the 2030s.
A Treasury spokesperson stated that delivering infrastructure projects is “a priority”.
“HS2 is on track, within budget, supporting 28,000 jobs. We are also looking to approve at most one large-scale nuclear facility in the next few decades and speed up the delivery of approximately 100 major infrastructure projects throughout the UK.
Grant Shapps, the new Business Secretary, gave the clearest indication yet that Liz Truss’s recent commitments are likely to be rescinded.
Ms Truss had promised to complete a major rail project in northern England, including a high-speed link that would eventually connect Northern cities and towns from Hull to Liverpool through Bradford.
However, plans for the Northern Powerhouse Rail rail line are expected to be rescinded.
He stated that there was no point in blasting new tunnels through the Pennines… It is not true to claim we aren’t delivering on our promises on levelling up North.”
Henri Murison is the chief executive of Northern Powerhouse Partnership. He said that scaling back the rail line raises serious questions about the government’s plans for growth.
“The North’s poor transport infrastructure continues to hold back private investment and weigh down our economy.
This option is a good saving for Treasury coffers. Northern Powerhouse Rail’s early development phase means that most of the required investment is well beyond the current spending review period.
Ms Truss, France’s president Emmanuel Macron, and Ms Truss pledged their “full support” for Sizewell C station, which will be built by the French energy company EDF.
In July, the government approved the construction of the plant. EDF claims it could produce enough to power approximately six million homes.
There was some confusion as EDF, the French energy contractor, created a new plant at Hinkley in Somerset. EDF executives and the Business and Energy department appeared confused by the possibility of a change in government policy. This will allow them to continue with large-scale and small-scale nuclear projects.
One nuclear industry executive said that “as far as we know, it’s still going”.
Large-scale, large-scale nuclear power plants are a key component of the government’s strategy to reduce Britain’s dependence on fossil fuels. Boris Johnson, the PM, declared that he intended to build eight more reactors within the next eight years.
This would be a significant shift in UK energy policy. Some will mourn, and others will rejoice.
It would not convince foreign and domestic investors that the UK government has stable policy priorities.
While running for the Conservative leadership, Mr Sunak promised to support Mr Johnson’s plan of building eight new reactors.
He also advocated for reforming licensing laws in order to permit the government to build more nuclear plants to help achieve energy independence by 2045.
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