After a two month deferral caused by COVID-19, EDF has submitted an application to the Planning Inspectorate for its Sizewell C nuclear reactor.
The Development Consent Order (DCO) outlines the plans for the 3.2GW nuclear plant, which will be constructed in Suffolk as a near-replica of the French energy giant’s oft-controversial Hinkley Point C plant.
EDF claims that Sizewell C will help to generate around 25,000 employment opportunities and 1,000 apprenticeships during construction, along with 900 highly-skilled positions when the plant is up and running.
Humphrey Cadoux-Hudson CBE, managing director of Sizewell C said that the project could help “kick-start the economy following the Coronavirus crisis.”
“It will offer thousands of high-quality job opportunities and long-term employment for people living in Suffolk and it will strengthen the nuclear supply chain across the country. On top of the economic benefits, Sizewell C will avoid 9 million tonnes of CO2 being pumped into the atmosphere each year. The project will play a key role in lowering emissions while helping the UK keep control of its low carbon future.”
However, there remains skepticism around the role on nuclear going forwards in the UK, in particular given the numerous problems Hinkley Point C has faced.
Last September, EDF confirmed the nuclear project was at great risk of running 15 months behind schedule and that it could cost the firm up to £2.9 billion more than previously estimated.
The Planning Inspectorate now has 28 days to assess the application, following which if it is accepted it will be made public and a full public examination would begin in Autumn.
John Dugmore, chief executive, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce has welcomed the application calling it “momentous for businesses and residents in Suffolk.
“It will boost training and employment opportunities across the county and attract investment to regenerate rural areas and towns.”