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New report urges UK government to back SMR programme

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A new report issued by the Rolls-Royce led UK Small Modular Reactor (SMR) consortium has urged the UK government to throw its backing behind a SMR programme, claiming that small modular reactors could produce energy for as low as £60 per MW/h, lowering the cost of electricity for consumers.
British-manufactured SMRs could create upwards of 40,000 jobs, contribute £100bn to the economy and open up a £400bn export market
The study, UK SMR: A National Endeavour, states that the development of British-manufactured power plants could create 40,000 skilled jobs, contribute upwards of £100bn to the economy and open up a potential £400bn global export market.

The report also argues that, through its innovative approach to modular construction, the UK SMR programme is uniquely placed to avoid the complexities, delays and overspends often associated with infrastructure projects.

Highlighting the importance of delivering security of supply as decarbonisation and electric vehicles look set to increase electricity demands from consumers, the study points out that just one SMR can power a city the size of Leeds, charge more than 62,000 electric cars, or keep 88 million smartphones operational.

Commenting on the report, Harry Holt, President of Nuclear at Rolls Royce, said:

“The UK has never had a greater need for low cost, low carbon, safe, secure and reliable energy production. With demand for energy set to rise in the near future- in part due to the growing popularity of electric cars- we believe that a UK SMR programme is a vital addition to our national infrastructure.”

“It represents a once in a lifetime opportunity for UK companies to design, manufacture and operate next generation reactors to meet our energy challenge, bolster the Government’s Industrial Strategy, bring jobs and growth to our economy and provide valuable post-Brexit exports.”

Lord Hutton, chairman of the Nuclear Industry Association, said:

“It is vitally important to make the decision to move forward on this opportunity now. That is why the UK government should make clear its intentions so that the UK can deliver a solution that will supply secure, reliable and affordable electricity for more than 60 years and capitalise on new overseas markets that are emerging for SMRs.”

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