Thursday, 22 November 2012

Wylfa B - a cash bonanza?

If in the long term Wylfa B gets built, quite rightly there should be some planning gain for the benefit of the community as a whole. But what can we expect in this regard. Well, a good pointer would be the S106 agreement between the developers of Hinkley C and Somerset councils.

Below is an extract from Somerset County Council website:

Somerset councils and EDF Energy have signed a landmark agreement which will deliver nearly £100 million for local communities to mitigate the impact of the proposed new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point C.....

[...which will] pay for a range of measures for communities most affected by the development, including:
  • Up to £8.5 million for a housing fund to mitigate potential impacts on the local housing market, including the refurbishment of local properties
  • £12.8 million as the balance of a £20 million community fund for measures to enhance the quality of life in local communities. The £12.8 million will be independently administered by the Somerset Community Foundation, with council, community and EDF Energy representation on the awarding panel
  • Nearly £16 million on a variety of highway improvement schemes, particularly in and around Bridgwater, to ease traffic and enhance road safety
  • Over £7.1 million to improve local skills and training, including a final £2 million instalment for the Energy Skills Centre at Bridgwater College
  • Up to £4.6 million towards community safety measures
  • Almost £5.5 million to support economic development and tourism initiatives
  • More than £3 million to support local education provision and provide extra school places, if necessary
  • Almost £1 million to support local health services
  • £300,000 to be spent on local heritage
  • £350,000 to pay for landscape and visual improvements
  • More than £440,000 to support improvements to public rights of way
  • Over £865,000 on environmental measures, including contributions towards flood defence measures in Cannington (£500,000), Bridgwater (£220,000) and Stolford (£80,000)
  • More than £3.6 million to provide additional resources to the local authorities so that they can monitor and ensure the successful implementation of the development and continue to work closely with local communities

Of course for both Hinkley C and Wylfa B to be built there will have to be some form of public subsidy. An article in the Telegraph says "Subsidies for new nuclear power could add £70 to annual household energy bills, Ian Marchant, the chief executive of SSE warns.

If we carry out a very simple exercise you would say that on Anglesey in 2011 there was 30,600 households, which would need to find £70 more to pay for their electricity annually, that's a total of £2,142,000 - over £2 million. And if we apply that over the likely lifetime of Wylfa B, 20 years that's a grand total of £42,840,000 or nearly £43 million. Or on the same basis for the number of households in Wales a grand total of £1,823,780,000 nearly £2 billion.

As I said a simple exercise, but it rather puts the £20 million community fund at Hinkley C into some sort of context at least, and makes you ask whether this current UK government energy policy is the best way foward to secure a safe and affordable energy supply for the future. 

No comments: