Mr Russell Brown (Dumfries, Labour)
I am talking about the market, and it is not rigged, as the hon. Gentleman has claimed on many occasions.
The Government fully believe that the existing nuclear stations should continue and naturally they must operate at the current high safety and environmental standards that we expect.
Over the next 15 years or so, nuclear plants will continue to make significant contributions. During the next 20 years, we shall see the scheduled closure of the three Scottish stations—the two advanced gas-cooled reactors at Hunterston and Torness, and the British Nuclear Fuels Magnox facility at Chapelcross, in my constituency, which produces 196 MW of power. That amount may seem small and insignificant but it has some importance in our local area, although I shall not elaborate on that point.
It is important to remember the contribution made by nuclear power in the daily life of each one of us: 25 per cent. of the power generated in the UK is nuclear based and twice that amount—50 per cent. of electricity in Scotland—comes from a nuclear source. When those three stations close, a significant gap will have to be filled. Who can tell what replacement source will be found? I have to point out to Scottish and Welsh nationalist Members that it will not come just from renewables.