It’s amazing how quickly millions of minds left freezing or boiling in the dark focus on the importance of having power as and when it’s needed.
Now the UK and had its first taste of the kind of grid chaos inevitably delivered when you pin your hopes on the weather. The idea that a modern economy and power itself on sunshine and breezes is nonsense. Not so with ever-reliable nuclear power.
There are around 450 nuclear reactors operating in 30 countries around the world, 15 countries are currently building another 60 reactors and their combined output accounts for over 11% of global electricity production – compared with total global output from wind which, to the nearest decimal point, is zero. And all without so much as a hiccup.
Having worked out that wind power will never work, British MPs are pointing to a power generation solution which has always worked, and which always will – 24/7, whatever the weather.
Tories plan mini-nuclear reactors for the North in major change to energy policy
A series of mini-nuclear reactors could be built across the North in a major power scheme.
Plants could generate energy in Yorkshire, Cumbria, Lancashire and Cheshire under a project spearheaded by Rolls-Royce for “small modular reactors”.
The Government is pumping in £18million so the firm can develop the design of the reactors.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to formally announce the plan in September and the first plant could be up and running within the next 15 years.
“These new mini nuclear reactors would be concentrated across the North — and plans are in motion to place them in the Sheffield city region, Cumbria, Lancashire and Cheshire,” a Government source told the Times.
“Nuclear is clean and a way of reducing the UK’s carbon footprint on a large scale.”
The reactors would trigger a jobs bonanza, with 40,000 posts expected to be created.
Each power station could generate enough energy to fuel 750,000 homes, according to estimates by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
Northern Powerhouse Partnership director Henri Murison said: “There is market ready technology available globally which can be put together with the UK supply chain, with us having what is needed to build them here in the Northern Powerhouse alongside investing in a large factory which this support will help us to achieve.
“Work undertaken by the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre has shown what can be achieved; ensuring that we build up our capabilities and all the resulting economic benefits of the jobs being here in making them.
“Our upcoming energy industrial strategy for the Northern Powerhouse will focus heavily on SMRs, fulfilling the promise of when George Osborne back in 2015 committed the funds to establish the UK as a leader in what was then an emerging area globally.”
Supporters say nuclear power is clean, efficient and renewable.
But critics believe it is too expensive, takes too long to clean up and the risks involved are too great.