• Thursday, July 18, 2024


French firm EDF pulls out of race to build mini nuclear plants

This leaves five companies in the competition: Rolls-Royce, GE Hitachi, Westinghouse, Holtec Britain and Nuscale Power

EDF tower in La Defense business district in Paris, France. (iStock)

By: Shajil Kumar

FRENCH energy giant EDF has pulled out of the competition to build mini-nuclear reactors in Britain.

The due date for submissions for the latest stage of the competition was on Monday, and the state-owned EDF has reportedly not put forward any design for small modular reactors (SMR), The Telegraph reports.

Now five companies are in the race: Rolls-Royce, GE Hitachi, Westinghouse, Holtec Britain and Nuscale Power.

Great British Nuclear (GBN), the government agency handling the competition, will now seek to whittle down the list to just four companies before picking two winners.

SMRs are far cheaper and quicker to build than large nuclear power stations, because of their modular, factory-made designs.

Labour party vowed to make Britain’s power grid produce net zero carbon emissions by 2030, and nuclear power is expected to play a crucial role. It has also publicly supported SMRs, but has not laid out any timelines.

The competition process should have been wound up by this summer but has been plagued by delays.

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