The announcement by German energy companies E.ON and RWE that they plan to withdraw from a large nuclear power project in Anglesey has sparked concern over the future of the British nuclear programme. Energy Minister Charles Hendry admitted that the withdrawal was “clearly very disappointing” although pointing out that “the UK’s new nuclear programme is far more than one consortia” and that “plans from EDF/Centrica and Nugen are on track”.
The reasons for E.ON and RWE exit from the programme are not widely known although some believe it could be linked to post-Fukushima concerns raising German wariness of nuclear power rather than concerns on the commercial viability of UK nuclear power.
This now leaves EDF and Centrica as the major players in the development of nuclear projects in the UK. Whatever your thoughts are on nuclear fuel, it would appear that it is currently the government’s only serious initiative to replace the fall in generation as more old coal powered plants are decommissioned reducing the UK’s generating capacity.
At Auditel our thoughts have been increasingly looking at ways in which we can help our clients by reducing the amount of energy they use to reduce the impact of any future increases in supply cost. I am currently working on an LED lighting project for a client which could potentially reduce electricity consumption within their factory by over 20% by replacing their old inefficient lighting. Importantly this project would have a payback time of less than 3 years making it very commercially viable. Initiatives like this and also looking at securing contracts over the longer term are helping some of my client protect themselves against future price increases.
If you have any comments or would like to discuss in more detail please do not hesitate to contact me.