Britain’s energy minister said on Sunday that the UK could build up to seven nuclear power stations by 2050, all while betting on offshore wind as part of a new strategy to increase its independence. energy after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“The idea is that, given what Vladimir Putin is doing, we don’t want to live in a world where we depend on Russian hydrocarbons”, declared Kwasi Kwarteng in the Sunday Telegraph, pointing out that “wind energy in sea, and especially nuclear” were “means of having electricity generation capacities in the United Kingdom”.
According to the newspaper, after intense internal discussions, Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government is due to present its strategy on Thursday to reduce the UK’s energy dependency and achieve net zero emissions by 2050. There is a realization within government that we could do more on nuclear,” Kwasi Kwarteng said.
A desire for energy independence
In 2050, “there will be a world where we have six or seven sites in the UK,” he continued. “It won’t happen in the next two years, but it’s definitely what we can aspire to.”
According to the Sunday Telegraph, the plan calls for the construction of at least two large-scale nuclear power plants by 2030, in addition to small modular reactors, so most of the nuclear sites in operation must close by this deadline.
Conversely, hydraulic fracturing and onshore wind power will not have a central role in the new strategy due to “the strong local opposition” encountered by these technologies, the minister stressed.
In addition to sanctions against Russian interests, London has also targeted the energy sector, with a ban on oil imports by the end of the year.