The Independent Assessment of Nuclear Developments in the World

Home > WNISR Essential News > GDF-Suez Questions Nuclear Investments in the UK

GDF-Suez Questions Nuclear Investments in the UK

Tuesday 17 April 2012

GDF-Suez Questions Nuclear Investments in the UK

"We are, with our partners, going to take a decision in 2015 [on building a new plant at Sellafield]. Today it is very difficult to invest in a nuclear power plant without clear visibility." This declaration by Gérard Mestrallet, CEO of the French group GDF-Suez, published by The Guardian, is the second blow in a month for nuclear new build plans in the UK after E.ON and RWE announced to withdraw from their projects. The GDF-Suez boss clearly indicated that the support measures proposed, including a carbon floor price suggested by the UK government would be "not enough and something is missing". Direct additional support is difficult for the coalition government that has vowed not to subsidize new nuclear projects and in conformity with EU State Aid rules.
GDF-Suez, together with the Spanish utility Iberdrola, set up the joint venture NuGen to build up 3,600 MW of new nuclear capacity in West Cumbria. The power plant named "Moorside" was to be operational by 2020.
There is concern that the last remaining investor for a British new build program, French utility EDF, might have to change its policy following the upcoming presidential elections in France. As The Guardian writes: "EDF may then reconsider building in Britain too. And then there were none …"

What They Say…

“The Report sets forth in painstaking detail the actual experience and achievements of nuclear energy around the world.”

Peter A. Bradford

Former commissioner
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)
(in his foreword to the 2013 report)
“A vital public service... Uniquely independent, thorough, and timely assessment."

Amory B. Lovins

Chairman, Rocky Mountain Institute
“This annual publication has over 20 years evolved into the most reliable, strikingly original, comprehensive and penetrating assessment of the global nuclear industry.”

Praful Bidwai

Financial Chronicle
Delhi, India
"Amid the hype and PR, the smoke and mirrors, of the 'nuclear renaissance', the Status Report offers a hard-edged reality check."

Walt Patterson

Associate Fellow Chatham House
London, UK
“Fantastic piece of work. Must reading for any observer of nuclear energy."

Henri Sokolski

Executive Director Nonproliferation Policy Education Center
Washington DC, USA
“Reliable research based on cold, hard facts, unlike the hype and amnesia of industry sources.”

Scott Ludlam

“Félicitations pour la dernière édition du WNISR. Formidable comme d'habitude!”

Fulcieri Maltini

International Consultant Former Director of the Nuclear Safety Account, EBRD
“Thought-provoking as usual.”

Will Dalrymple

Editor Nuclear Engineering International
"The authoritative report on the status of nuclear power plants worldwide is the World Nuclear Industry Status Report."


Bangkok, Thailand
“Such an illuminating report.”

Sam Geall

Deputy Editor China Dialogue
London, UK
"An astounding collection of facts and figures, a myth-busting international overview… An eye-opening piece of work!"

R. Andreas Krämer

Chairman Ecologic Institute
Berlin, Germany
“I really appreciate you letting us excerpt your report! It’s incredibly well researched and comprehensive, so thank you!”

Stuart Luman

Associate Editor Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists