Sedgemoor District Council's Hinkley Point concerns

  • 4 January 2012
  • From the section Somerset
Hinkley Point power station
Image caption A new Hinkley Point C station could open in 2020

Concerns have been raised by Sedgemoor District Council over plans for a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point.

The council has sent a report to the Infrastructure Planning Commission which deals with large-scale projects.

A decline in tourism, a loss in quality of life and house price increases due to extra demand from newly created jobs have been cited as worrying issues.

An EDF spokesman said the Hinkley Point C project would bring "both benefits and some disruption" to the area.

"We are committed to working with the community and local authorities to maximise the benefits and mitigate the impacts as far as practical," he said.

Areas of concern

The government will make the final decision on EDF Energy's proposals after considering the recommendation made by the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC) which is looking at the planning application.

As part of the planning process, the authority is submitting its views on the overall development to the IPC.

Ten broad topics have been listed as areas of concern, including the effect on housing and the local economy, the risks relating to nuclear power and the environmental impact.

The council said it was also worried "the attention given to places and settlements is poor", in particular to Bridgwater, which it felt would be most affected by the scheme, in terms of increased traffic and quality of life.

It said more could be done to invest in the regeneration of Bridgwater and improve access to skills and learning for young people.

Concerns were also highlighted over the way EDF was "slicing up" different aspects of the project, such as the site preparation works, so it would be harder to assess the full impact of the project on the environment.

A statement from EDF said the company expected to spend £300m "mitigating the impacts of the project and providing community benefit".

"Of this, £100m should be of lasting benefit to the community beyond the construction of the plant," it said.

If permission is granted, the new power station could open by 2020.

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