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UK energy security boost as EDF eyes investment to extend life of nuclear plants | Business News

EDF Energy has revealed investment plans to extend the lives of its operational nuclear power plants in the UK.

The French state-owned firm said its proposals, which are subject to regulatory approval and a final investment decision, would bolster energy security at a time when the world is seeking emission-free power amid the battle against climate change.

The plans would see its advanced gas-cooled reactors (AGRs) at the Torness, Heysham 1 and 2 and Hartlepool plants maintain output at current levels for “as long as possible.”

It is also examining the potential for its Sizewell B plant to run for 20 years longer than scheduled.

The company said it aimed to make a decision on the viability of its plans by the end of the year.

It plans a £1.3bn investment, should the project receive the green light and it is deemed commercially viable.

The reactors at Hartlepool and Heysham 1 have been generating electricity for 40 years and have already formed part of a £7bn investment to extend the lives of EDF’s plants since 2009.

Mark Hartley, managing director of EDF’s nuclear operations business, said: “Our aim is to maintain the output of the four AGR stations for as long as possible and extend Sizewell B by a further 20 years out to 2055.”

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EDF remains in the process of building the new, highly delayed, Hinkley Point C plant and has begun work on Sizewell C.

The government sees both as crucial to the UK’s energy mix as the country transitions from fossil fuels towards green sources and looks to bolster domestic production amid gas volatility since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Campaigners oppose their construction on many grounds including environmental and cost.

The output of EDF’s UK nuclear fleet was 37.3 terawatt hours last year, 15% lower than the year before due to station closures and…

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This notice was published: 2024-01-09 07:43:00

By Sky News

Sky News is a British 24-hour information television channel, the first in Europe of its kind, launched on February 5, 1989 by the British Sky Broadcasting Company.

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