Final decision on Hinkley Point

Richard Furlong - City Surveys Group

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Published: 29th July 2016

This Article was Written by: Richard Furlong - City Surveys Group


The government has delayed making their final decision regarding the construction of an additional nuclear reactor at Hinkley Point in Somerset, this despite EDF (the company behind the scheme) giving the go ahead on Thursday.

The £18bn project has attracted criticism from many quarters, not least from British politicians, environmental campaign s and even members of EDF’s own board. The French company last night saw the resignation of Gérard Magnin, a director and, interestingly, one of France’s state-appointed members on the board. In his resignation letter, M. Magnin cited a lack of synergy between what he called “extending the lifespan of reactors, to blindly renewing contracts for disposing waste” as key factors in bringing about his departure and made clear his scepticism about the efficacy of promoting nuclear power over renewable energy.

Whilst clearly something of a distraction to the approval process, the French government made clear that Monsieur Magnin’s decision made no difference to their support for the Hinkley Point C project and did nothing to diminish its support for the decision made by EDF, a company part owned by the nation.

The UK government, however, perhaps due to the intensifying narrative surrounding the controversial site, has now delayed giving final approval for the £18 billion project until Autumn.

A potential major boon for the construction and civil engineering sectors in the UK, the construction of what would ultimately dwarf Crossrail as Europe’s biggest ever civil engineering project would generate 25,000 jobs and more than sixty percent of contracts thought to be intended for British firms.

Despite final approval not yet having been set in stone, the UK has already seen the award of over £1.5 billion of contracts. Other organisations and joint venture consortia confirmed as preferred bidders include (but are not limited to)…

  • Laing O’Rourke / Bouygues JV – Primary civils contractor
  • Balfour Beatty / NG Bailey JV – Primary electrical contractor
  • Clyde Union – Provision of cooling and feedwater pump systems
  • Premier Interlink WACO UK – Temporary structure construction contractor
  • Cavendish Boccard Nuclear – Equipment and pipework installation contractor

We will update this story as and when the UK government finalises their decision one way or another.

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