Wednesday, 25 May, 2022

UK may build seven nuclear plants by 2050: Minister

LONDON: Britain could build up to seven new nuclear power plants by 2050, as well as boost offshore wind to diversify energy sources, a senior minister said Sunday.

"If we fast forward to 2050, there is a world where we have six or seven (nuclear) sites in the UK," Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng told The Sunday Telegraph, reports AFP.

"That isn't going to happen in the next two years. But it's definitely something that we can aspire to."

Britain has set itself a target of carbon neutrality by 2050 and the government is expected to publish a delayed new energy security strategy next week.

This comes as many British people are struggling to pay energy bills amid a cost of living crisis.

Kwarteng said the strategy "looks at offshore wind, and particularly nuclear, as ways in which we can actually have electricity-generating capacity here in the UK".

About 21 per cent of Britain's electricity comes from 15 nuclear reactors today, according to Energy UK trade association.

Kwarteng and transport minister Grant Shapps downplayed prospects of building more onshore wind turbines, however, citing public opposition,

"In relation to onshore wind and fracking, we can only do those with a large measure of community consent," Kwarteng said.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told Sky News: "I don't favour the vast increase in onshore wind farms, for pretty obvious reasons".