Expert opinion deeply divided on case for Hinkley nuclear

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  1. Thanks for a well written article.

    I would like to address to points made by HPC proponents that are misleading.

    Hinkely Point C is not the nuclear industry. The ‘job’ & supply chain benefits numbers are indirect and highly questionable and non-binding. a large majority of construction workers will be migrant workers (I have not objection to this but it is an important point if we want to understand the direct benefits to the UK) and supply chain benefits will be entirely dependent on our apparently inexistent industries ability to compete for the work.

    The second point is that variable renewables do not need baseload generation to back them up, they need flexible capacity. In fact, it is quite well understood that their is an incompatibility between variable RES and baseload generation. What happens when we have sufficient renewables on the system to meet our demand at any point in time whilst we have inflexible generators on the system? Someone has to be curtailed, generally the cheapest solution which will be renewables. At the moment the consumer will pick up the bill from this inefficiency. EDF are relying on the balancing market and design of the CfD to ensure that they will not be curtailed and kept whole (which is perverse since they will effectively be the most expensive form of generation on the system).

    HPC as a project simply has nothing going for it. We would have been better off to wait a couple yrs and have an competitive process including other nuclear consortia to ensure we are at the very least getting a good price for it.

  2. To persist is madness

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