UK energy needs "essential" new nuclear

Ramping up nuclear power in the UK is “essential” for keeping the lights on. This is according to new research from Oxford University’s Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment […]

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By Tom Gibson

Ramping up nuclear power in the UK is “essential” for keeping the lights on. This is according to new research from Oxford University’s Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment (SSEE), which claims a £100 billion, world-leading nuclear industry can be achieved.

The SSEE says remodelling the UK’s energy infrastructure is “urgent”, with nuclear playing a key role. Professor Sir David King, Director of the SSEE said: “It is clear from our study that nuclear must play an important part in the energy mix but to do so requires a long term pathway and critical insights.

“The recent announcements on the Franco-British Accord and the desire to create a long-term strategy for nuclear up to and beyond 2050 are welcome but we need to address the fundamental issue that energy provision is generally a 100 year programme and requires not just a long-term view but skills and the science base to support it.”

The report warns that failing to deal with the UK’s legacy issues could have a detrimental effect on the industry as a whole and recommends the formation of an independent body to advise on long-term nuclear strategy, echoing sentiments from the Energy Technologies Institute who last month said: “Any delays risk closing off opportunities for UK industry to capitalise on the global market.”