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Sun October 20 2019

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Construction costs rise 10% at Hinkley Point C

25 Sep Difficult ground conditions have been blamed for contributing to an unexpected 10% cost escalation of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station construction project.

Hinkley Point C is now expected to cost £22bn to build, give or take £500m
Hinkley Point C is now expected to cost £22bn to build, give or take £500m

The forecasted cost of building the UK’s first new nuclear power station for decades has gone up from a range of between £19.6bn and £20.3bn to between £21.5bn and £22.5bn (at 2015 prices).

That is an increase of £1.9bn to £2.9bn compared to the previous estimate.

A review of the project’s costs, schedule and organisation was conducted after the milestone completion in June of the nuclear island ‘common raft’ for the first unit, in line with the schedule announced in September 2016.

The review has concluded that the project remains on course to hit its next big target – completing the common raft for Unit 2 in June 2020.

However the cost projections have increased and the range depends on the effectiveness of action plans to be delivered in partnership with contractors, EDF Energy said.

It said: “Cost increases reflect challenging ground conditions which made earthworks more expensive than anticipated, revised action plan targets and extra costs needed to implement the completed functional design, which has been adapted for a first-of-a-kind application in the UK context.”

EDF Energy of France is developing Hinkley Point C in joint venture with China General Nuclear Power Group (CGN).

Under the terms of the contract for difference deal that the two companies negotiated with the UK government, agreeing a price for the energy generated, there is no impact for UK consumers or taxpayers as a result of the construction cost increases, they said.

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