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Iberdrola Exits Nuclear in the UK

Sunday 30 September 2012

Iberdrola Exits Nuclear in the UK

The UK Government has been actively promoting the construction of new nuclear power and following a competitive process in 2009, three nuclear consortiums Electricité de France (EDF), Horizon and NUGeneration (NuGen) were allocated sites for new nuclear construction. However, in September 2011, the UK utility, SSE, exited the NuGen nuclear group by selling out to partners Iberdrola and GDF-Suez. Then at the end of September 2012 it was reported that Iberdrola would also exist the group, leaving GDF-Suez as the sole party and unlikely to go it alone. This comes on the back of the other major withdrawal in March 2012, when RWE and E.ON pulled out of their Horizon joint venture citing global economic conditions, a shortage of capital, and the accelerated phase-out of nuclear power in Germany as reasons for their exit. This leaves EDF Energy, the UK subsidiary of France’s state owned utility EDF, increasingly alone on the ranks of new build candidates. Anti-nuclear group CORE’s spokesman Martin Forwood stated: “As with the rest of the UK’s so-called nuclear renaissance plans, new build at Sellafield looks set to hit the buffers.”

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