The new agreement marks a major step in plans to build a nuclear power station in Cumbria. The new development is expected to be the largest, single proposed nuclear power plant construction project in Europe.
As part of the deal, Toshiba has a 60% stake and GDF SUEZ retain a 40% holding in NuGeneration, which is the developer of the Moorside new nuclear power project.
NuGen will deliver three reactors at the Moorside site near Sellafield using AP1000 reactors manufactured by Toshiba’s company, Westinghouse.
The three Westinghouse reactors planned for Moorside are expected to produce a total of 3.4 gigawatts. This would fulfill around 7% of the country’s future electricity requirements.
"The Moorside new nuclear project will bring at least £10bn of investment and is expected to create up to 21,000 energy engineering jobs, while also providing a reliable source of low carbon energy for over six million homes," said Energy Minister Michael Fallon.
He added: "This announcement is a significant step towards new reactors likely to come online in 2024 and shows how attractive the UK is for investors."
According to NuGen, the final investment decisions will be made in four years time. Until then the firm will carry out a broad range of preparatory works, including regulatory, permitting and commercial activities.
The aim of the management team this year is to undertake site investigations, preliminary studies for site layouts and stakeholder engagement and preparation for stakeholder consultations.
Construction work could potentially start in 2018, subject to the final approval.
Hisao Tanaka, President and CEO, Toshiba Corporation, said: “We welcome the closing of the contract, which reconfirms Toshiba’s, GDF SUEZ’ and Westinghouse’s commitment to build three AP1000 reactors at Moorside.
“We are confident this project will support the U.K. in meeting the challenges of securing a stable, affordable future energy supply and cutting CO2 emissions.”
Westinghouse President and CEO Danny Roderick added: “Westinghouse is delighted that Europe’s largest AP1000 nuclear plant project to date will be constructed in the UK, which already is home to one of our largest global operations.”
Photo Source: Construction Enquirer