The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) has submitted today its response to the Stage 2 local consultation of the EDF Energy new nuclear development proposed for the Sizewell site in Suffolk. (1)
NFLA are surprised and quite indignant that this second consultation does not include an Environmental Impact Assessment and many other important pieces of information. EDF have said this information will instead be in a third round of consultation. It is NFLA’s view that the motivation behind EDF’s latest consultation for Sizewell is simply to be seen to keep progressing the development, when little has actually moved forward due to the sheer length and financial problems besetting its parallel Hinkley Point development.
Other key points made in the NFLA response to the Sizewell consultation include:
- A key part of the environmental impact assessment process should be an assessment of the ‘likely significant effects on the environment’ of ‘reasonable alternatives’.
- The Government’s National Policy Statement on Energy is completely out of date. Whereas that said energy generation needs to double by 2050 – a major justification for new nuclear – Britain has consumed 15% less energy in 2014 than it did in 2000.
- The costs of renewable energy are coming rapidly down whilst new nuclear costs are going up.
- Energy storage developments means that any intermittency issues of renewables can be catered for, and subsequently the need for new nuclear is therefore not required.
- NFLA notes and agrees with the “deep concerns” of the two local Suffolk Councils with the lack of information provided on transport and environmental matters, and that EDF have “fail(ed) to recognise or truly acknowledge the environmental challenge that development at this site faces, nor the likelihood of residual impacts in a number of areas”. (2)
- NFLA also share the concern of the Suffolk Preservation Society (SPS) who argue that “the construction phase will threaten environmental damage on an unprecedented scale across a wide range of highly sensitive locations”. (3)
- NFLA note that the people of Suffolk could play host to waste with a radioactive content equivalent to 80% of the UK’s existing radioactive waste inventory for the next two hundred years.
As such NFLA conclude that EDF should not seek to develop a new nuclear reactor on the Sizewell site.
NFLA Steering Committee Chair Councillor Ernie Galsworthy said:
This EDF consultation to develop a new nuclear reactor at Sizewell is inadequate. Given years have been spent on it since the last consultation, it is shocking that it contains such little environmental information by this point. It is telling that even the local Councils who broadly support new nuclear have been so critical of it. I believe the rapidly changing global energy market shows comprehensive evidence that the cost of renewable energy is coming down at a time when many billions of pounds are now required for new nuclear. Coupled with energy storage and energy efficiency there is no need or role for new nuclear build in the UK now. It is time for EDF and the UK Government to realise this. There is absolutely no need for Sizewell C.”
For more information please contact Sean Morris, NFLA Secretary, on 0161 234 3244.
Notes for editors:
(2) East Anglian Daily Times, 24th January 2017 http://www.eadt.co.uk/business/suffolk_councils_to_withhold_backing_for_edf_energy_s_sizewell_c_nuclear_power_station_1_4860006
(3) East Anglian Daily Times, 24th January 2017 http://www.eadt.co.uk/news/sps_calls_on_edf_to_change_sizewell_c_plans_to_avert_environmental_desecration_1_4860829