Building Britain’s nuclear future – Construction

The planned nuclear new build programme in the UK has been the subject of much discussion over the last few years.  However, concern over the security of energy supply and the commitment to embracing a low carbon economy have shifted focus away from some of the hurdles to the reality of delivering the new nuclear build programme. 

There are plans or proposals to construct 10 new nuclear power plants in the UK and up to 300 around the world in the next 20 years, at an estimated cost of $300bn.

With the UK construction industry at the centre of the debate, our recent report provides a detailed view not only of the challenges, but also the enormous opportunities ahead. This is based on interviews with senior figures from across the nuclear sector including KPMG, National Grid, Nuclear Installations Inspectorate, UK Atomic Energy Authority, Westinghouse, Areva and Balfour Beatty. 

The report, backed by the Nuclear Industry Association, makes a number of key points: 

  • We have the civil engineering skills to deliver 70% of a nuclear plant, but vital specialist skills have been lost because of the generation gap since the UK’s last nuclear programme
  • There is a shortage of home grown major programme management skills in the UK, with foreign consortia/firms now delivering the biggest projects
  • Regulators must not ‘move the goalposts’ once the framework to construct the new power stations has been agreed
  • Contracts will have to spread risks between parties – both domestic and international – to prevent investors in nuclear new build from being deterred from participation.

If the issues discussed in this report can be addressed, the result will be the creation of powerful entities with a strong UK presence which can deliver nuclear power projects on time, on budget, to a high standard throughout the world.

 To receive a copy of our report, please select link below 

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