- A nine-member association of companies have pledged to build 16 small nuclear power stations by 2050
- Each mini reactor would be in operation for up to 60 years and provide 440 megawatts of electricity per year
- The program is expected to create 40,000 jobs.
The British government is considering investing 2 billion pounds sterling ($2.6 billion) to help build small nuclear reactors as part of London’s overall strategy of developing cleaner energy and achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The financing program – details of which have yet to be finalized, Bloomberg reported – would involve the government buying an equity stake in various new small nuclear stations across the country. Smaller reactors, as the government envisions, may be a more economical strategy to build up nuclear power in the country.
Indeed, a nine-member consortium of companies, including Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc and construction giant Laing O’Rourke Plc, have pledged to build 16 small nuclear power stations by 2050 on existing nuclear sites. This program is expected to create 40,000 jobs.
Each mini reactor would be in operation for up to 60 years and provide 440 megawatts of electricity per year — enough to power the city of Leeds (a city of 480,000 people), Financial Times reported.
The government’s funds “should deliver sufficient cash to get the consortium through building the factories and well on the way to construction of power stations prior to finding more money from other sources,” a source told FT.
“Nuclear power will play a key role in the U.K.’s future energy mix as we transition to a low-carbon economy, including through our investments in small and advanced modular reactors,” a spokesperson for the Prime Minister said.
The government’s initial investment would be part of the first tranche to construct five such small nuclear stations.