Hitachi- from the country that brought the world Fukushima

Hitachi- from the country that brought the world Fukushima
We feel very sad for the people of Japan who want to end nuclear energy whilst a potential new government and big business are desperate for it

No Fukushima at Oldbury

No to Fukushima at Shepperdine!

No to Fukushima at Shepperdine!

Monday, 16 May 2011

Coaltion should be up-front about nuclear subsidy

"Coalition should be up-front about nuclear subsidy" says Committee

16 May 2011
The Government risks distorting its planned reform of the electricity market merely to save political face over implicit subsidies for nuclear power, MPs on the Energy and Climate Change Committee warn in a report out today.

The Coalition Agreement pledged to allow new nuclear power stations to be built 'provided that they receive no public subsidy'. But MPs believe that Government proposals will effectively provide subsidies to nuclear generators through new long term contracts and a carbon price floor that could hand them windfall profits.
Tim Yeo MP, Chair of the Energy and Climate Change Committee, said: 
"Ministers believe that new nuclear could play a key role in keep the lights on and meeting our climate change targets—but they don’t want to own up to supporting it.
 This is understandable given the promise they made not to subsidise nuclear, but it would be deeply irresponsible to skew the whole process of electricity market reform simply to save face. 
 The Government must be up front about the support it is giving to nuclear and not hide subsidies in a one-size-fits-all design for long-term energy contracts." 


Over one hundred billion pounds of investment is needed by 2020 to replace the UK's aging power stations, cut carbon emissions and maintain energy security. Government proposals for Electricity Market Reform (EMR) are supposed to encourage power companies to deliver clean affordable energy, even when there are more inflexible and intermittent sources of electricity in the mix.

The committee's findings

The committee is concerned that the current EMR proposals are over-complex and could fail to attract the £110 billion investment needed in the electricity generation alone by 2020. It is calling on the Government to simplify its package of reforms to provide a more certain framework for investors. The starting point for EMR should be a clearly defined objective to reduce the carbon intensity of electricity generation in the UK to 50g of CO2 per kilowatt hour (KWh) by 2030.


  • The wholesale market should be fundamentally reformed to break up the dominance of the Big Six energy companies, in order to allow new entrants to invest in the UK and improve the liquidity of the market.
  • The long term contracts designed to encourage low carbon energy sources—known as Feed-in-Tariffs with Contracts for Difference—will work for nuclear, but different types of contract are needed for renewables and other clean technologies.
  • It is too early for the Government to design a capacity mechanism given the rapid development of smart meters, interconnectors and storage systems that could remove the need for "peaking plant".
  • The Carbon Price Support is a necessary short term solution to weaknesses in the EU Emission Trading System, but will increase costs for consumers and could provide a windfall for nuclear and renewables generators.
The Chair of the committee, Tim Yeo MP, said:
"The Government must go back to the drawing board and come up with a more straightforward and coherent set of plans to reform the electricity market.
Radical reform of the wholesale energy market is needed to stop the Big Six from stitching it up, but at the moment Ministers are only tinkering at the margins."
The MPs also call on the Government to be up front about the effect that reforms will have on energy bills. Tim Yeo MP added:
"Cleaning up our power sector will cost money, but the long term benefits for the UK of having a secure, reliable and low-carbon electricity system are clear.
In the short to medium term bills will rise, but in the long term people will see savings—Ministers should be open about that." 


Terms of Reference
1 Introduction 

2 Background 

3 DECC's high level objectives 

4 The electricity wholesale market 

5 Long term contracts 

6 Carbon Price Support (CPS) 

7 Capacity mechanism 

8 Emissions Performance Standard (EPS) 
9 Investment: risks and returns 

10 Energy consumers 

11 Demand side measures 

12 Transition period and implementation of the new regime 

13 Conclusion 
Conclusions and recommendations 
Formal Minutes 
List of printed written evidence 
List of additional written evidence 
List of Reports from the Committee during the current Parliament
Oral and written evidence
18 January 2011
25 January 2011
2 February 2011
8 February 2011
15 February 2011
15 March 2011 (morning)15 March 2011 (afternoon)
Written Evidence
Additional written evidence (unprinted)

Energy and Climate Change - Additional (Unprinted) Written Evidence [Back to Report]
Electricity Market Reform
Here you can browse the Written Evidence ordered by the House of Commons to be printed 25 January 2011.

Memorandum submitted by Dr Barrie Murray

Nuclear Power Stations: Environment Protection

9 May 2011 : Column 1024W 
Martin Horwood: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate has been made of the additional revenue that will accrue to existing nuclear power station operators as a result of the carbon price support proposals announced in the 2011 Budget. [52152]
Justine Greening: The carbon price floor announced in the Budget is intended to create economic incentives toward low-carbon electricity generation and away from high-carbon generation. All types of low-carbon technologies will be incentivised by the price floor. The impact on utility companies' profitability will depend on the overall composition of their generation portfolios and future investment decisions.
The existing nuclear sector is likely to benefit by an average of £50 million per annum to 2030 due to higher wholesale electricity prices. Similarly, the renewable energy sector is expected to benefit by an average of at least £25 million a year to 2030.


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