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Taking the nuclear option: is it the solution to the UK's energy needs?


Next week the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee will take evidence on nuclear energy. The session will focus on the agreement between the Government and EDF Energy for the construction of a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point.

The Committee will take evidence from EDF Energy as well as critics of the scheme and other nuclear power companies. This session is part of the Committee's inquiry into ‘The Economics of UK Energy Policy'.

On Tuesday 1 November 2016 the Committee will hear from:

At 3.35pm:

  • Vincent de Rivaz, Chief Executive Officer, EDF Energy
  • Paul Spence, Director of Strategy and Corporate Affairs, EDF Energy
  • Humphrey Cadoux-Hudson, Managing Director of Nuclear New Build, EDF Energy.

At 4.15pm:

  • Peter Atherton, Cornwall Energy
  • Tom Burke, 3EG.

At 5.00pm:

  • Tom Samson, Chief Executive Officer, NuGen
  • David Stearns, ‎Business Development Director, Horizon Nuclear Power.

Questions the Committee is likely to ask include:

  • What will happen if the project falls behind schedule and runs over budget? Will the UK Government be asked to fund the completion of the project?
  • The proposed reactor design has not been successfully installed anywhere else in the world: will this new technology work?
  • What is the contractual agreement between EDF Energy and the Chinese companies investing in Hinkley?
  • Do financial pressures on EDF threaten the financing of the project?
  •  What are the other options available for new nuclear power?

The Committee is exploring the present mix of policy interventions and subsidies in the energy market. The core question which it is seeking to answer is: “What are the failures, if any, in the energy market and what measures are needed to correct them?”

The evidence session will take place at 3.35pm on Tuesday 1 November 2016 in Committee Room 1 of the House of Lords.

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