By Joe Mellor, Deputy Editor
London Mayor Boris Johnson has called the plan for Hinkley Point “a disgrace.” – just a few weeks after the PM announced a landmark deal with the Chinese to build it. Cameron called it a “flagship project of cooperation” between the two countries.
But Boris has broke ranks and said the £18n cost for the first nuclear power in two decades underwritten with £2bn of taxpayers’ money was an “extraordinary amount of money to spend”.
Building work on the site in Somerset is set to begin within weeks after the PM revealed a deal between state-owned China General Nuclear Power (CGN) and French firm EDF back in October. China pledged £6bn investment – a third of the total cost, with EDF funding the remaining £12bn,
In return the Government a guaranteed price paid for electricity generated by Hinkley Point of £92.50 per megawatt hour for 35 years. The fear is that the cost of the plant will in fact be paid for by UK citizens through increased energy bills.
Baroness Jones, a Green party London Assembly member, asked whether he supported the building of Hinkley Point C despite its cost, Mr Johnson said: “I’m totally with you on that one – it’s a disgrace.
“But I think we have been left in a very difficult position by previous Labour administrations with our energy supply; we need to have security of supply – nuclear has got to be part of the mix – it won’t be the whole solution but it has to be part of it.”
If that wasn’t enough trouble for Hinkley Point; the Luxembourg government will join Austria’s legal challenge to the €108 billion Hinkley C subsidy package at the European Court of Justice. It is no secret that Germany and Sweden, countries that are now in the process of decommissioning their nuclear power legacy and building up renewable energy, are unhappy with the European Commission’s decision to approve the UK’s state aid for Hinkley C.
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