Nuclear sites are confirmed

June 23, 2011

Oldbury in South Gloucestershire and Hinkley Point in Somerset are two of eight sites where the next generation of UK nuclear reactors will be built and operational by 2025, the government confirmed today.

The plans still have to be debated and voted on in Parliament but the coalition is hoping that with a pro-nuclear majority in the Commons, MPs will vote in favour of the plan.

Energy Minister Charles Hendry said: "Around a quarter of the UK's generating capacity is due to close by the end of this decade. We need to replace this with secure, low carbon, affordable energy.

"This will require over £100bn worth of investment in electricity generation alone. This means twice as much investment in energy infrastructure in this decade as was achieved in the last decade."

The announcement is bound to generate huge controversy. The future of nuclear power was put in doubt in March when a Japanese earthquake and tsunami rocked the reactors at Fukushima, leaving radioactivity leaking from the plant. Germany has already announced that all of its nuclear plants are to be shut down and that it will pursue alternative solutions such as wind and solar power.

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