DECENTRALISE ENERGY AND SCRAP NUCLEAR

Stop Hinkley

THE NUCLEAR FREE LOCAL AUTHORITIES calls on the UK Government to consider a decentralised alternative
energy policy including district heating, green gas and solar in its
review of Hinkley Point C

The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) publishes today a report which
shows some of the types of alternative energy solutions the UK Government
could support as an alternative to the building of new nuclear reactors at
Hinkley Point. (1)

The Government is currently reviewing the proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear
development – one of the largest, most expensive and complicated nuclear
sites of the modern nuclear age. National and specialist media as diverse
as The Times, The Guardian, Bloomberg, The Economist and many others have
been sharply critical of the project and a number of them have called for
it to be cancelled. NFLA agrees with them. As a recent example, a poll of
over 1,000 members of the Institute of Directors, previously supportive of
Hinkley Point C, finds just 9% of them were in strong agreement that the
Hinkley Point nuclear plant would make Britain more economically
competitive, and fewer than one-in-five were of the opinion that the
nuclear option would make the country more ‘strategically secure’.
Instead, there was much stronger support for solar energy, offshore wind
and to a lesser extent, tidal energy. (2)

Whilst much of the media may have criticised the Hinkley Point deal, there
has not been as much analysis of what could replace the reactors and the
electricity it may generate. NFLA is contributing to that debate by
publishing a report by two commissioned experts – its Policy Advisor Pete
Roche and the energy policy expert Professor Keith Barnham – which show
dramatic evidence of the growth and potential of a number of renewable
technologies.

Pete Roche argues that district heating schemes, together with energy
storage solutions, could help to deal with the intermittency issues
associated with renewables, and in addition provide a valuable way to
tackle fuel poverty. (3) Councils around the country are developing such
schemes and they advocate more support from the UK Government and Devolved
Governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Roche’s analysis also
calls on renewed support for biogas alternatives where district heating is
not an option.

In addition, NFLA reissues the research produced for it by Professor Keith
Barnham of the dramatic growth of renewable energy in recent years. This
has been needlessly placed under genuine threat by Government cuts to
financial support for solar, wind and other renewable solutions. The
report puts forward six ways that renewable energy can still grow despite
such retrograde cuts. Professor Barnham has just returned from a visit to
the United States and looked at a number of promising new initiatives in
renewable electricity, as well as discussing sustained progress on the
ultimate renewable challenge: developing a solar fuel that could
eventually replace gasoline in cars, trucks, buses, trains and aircraft.
(4)

Pete Roche and Keith Barnham will be presenting their analysis on such
clean and sustainable energy alternatives to Hinkley Point C at a NFLA
seminar in Manchester Town Hall on the 30th September. (5)

NFLA Chair Councillor Ernie Galsworthy added:
“During the almost decade long debate over the Hinkley Point C development
NFLA has been saying that it is the wrong answer to our low carbon energy
needs. It is pleasing to see the mass and specialist media finally
beginning to contemplate such a view at long last. With this and other
reports, NFLA show again the many alternatives to new nuclear that can
provide energy security, reduce fuel poverty and literally bring renewable
power to the people. I call on the Government’s review to encompass such
reports and move policy away from new nuclear and fossil fuels and towards
a renewable energy revolution moving ahead in much of the industrialised
and developing world

Notes for editors:
(1) The report is attached with this media release and can be found on
the homepage of the NFLA website http://www.nuclearpolicy.info
(2) PV Magazine, 19th August 2016
http://www.pv-magazine.com/news/details/beitrag/solar-wins-strong-backing-from-uks-business-chiefs–poll-shows_100025849/#ixzz4HwjNYXVM
(3) Originally published by Greenpeace’s Energy Desk –
http://energydesk.greenpeace.org/2016/08/22/district-heating-green-gas-hinkley/

(4) Keith Barnham, ‘Goodbye gasoline, we can Get if From The Sun’, The
Ecologist, 21st July 2016
http://www.theecologist.org/blogs_and_comments/Blogs/2987925/goodbye_gasoline_we_can_get_it_from_the_sun.html
(5) NFLA SC / English Forum seminar, ‘The decentralised, renewable
alternatives to Hinkley C and new nuclear’, Manchester Town Hall, 1.30pm –
3.00pm, 30th September 2016. Contact the NFLA Secretary to register
attendance.

 

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