Nuclear Power

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered at on 17 December 2021.

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Photo of Mark Menzies Mark Menzies Conservative, Fylde

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential contribution of nuclear energy in (a) improving the UK’s energy security and (b) achieving net zero; and what steps he plans to take to raise awareness of that contribution.

Photo of Greg Hands Greg Hands The Minister of State, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

Analysis published by BEIS with the Energy White Paper (EWP) [1] in 2020 shows that, alongside significant amounts of wind and solar, a stable, low-cost electricity system to meet net zero will also require other forms of low-carbon power, including nuclear, to complement the intermittency of those technologies.

As outlined in the Net Zero Strategy[2] published in October 2021, we need to continue to deploy all known low-carbon technologies at scale over the next decade to ensure optionality is maintained, whilst developing new options to mitigate delivery risk and reduce costs. The Government has confirmed that it aims to reach a Final Investment Decision on at least one large-scale nuclear project this Parliament and recently announced £210m for Rolls-Royce’s Small Modular Reactor design. We will also publish a roadmap for new nuclear in 2022. It will focus on what is needed to support the deployment of further new nuclear in the UK. I was proud to host an event about nuclear energy in the UK Pavilion at COP26 and my officials are working with industry to build on that momentum.

[1] https://www.govuk/government/publications/energy-white-paper-powering-our-net-zero-future.

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/net-zero-strategy.

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