Hinkley C investment decision: A new dawn for UK nuclear power?

The long-awaited final investment Decision (FID) for EDF Energy’s planned 3,200-MW Hinkley Point C nuclear power station in western England, scheduled to take place at a board meeting of French utility EDF in Paris July 28, will not only give the go ahead for the first new nuclear plant in the UK since 1995, but could also serve as the starting gun for a total of 16,000 MW of new nuclear capacity due to be built in the country. Key to Hinkley’s significance for other new nuclear construction, not only in the UK but elsewhere in the European Union, is the Contract for Difference, or CFD, a 35-year offtake price guarantee and debt protection. Hinkley’s strike price was agreed at £92.50/MWh, or £89.50/MWh, if a positive FID is taken on further EPR units at Sizewell C. EDF estimates that it will make a rate of return on the project of around 9% over a 60-year lifetime. The CFD mechanism was approved as legal state aid by the European Commission after an in-depth investigation, although it is still the subject of a legal appeal by Austria to the European Court of Justice, or ECJ. NuGeneration Limited, or NuGen, a consortium that

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Source: CTRM Center

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