Hinkley Point: EDF boss Vincent de Rivaz urges go-ahead

Computer generated image of Hinkley Point C nuclear power station Image copyright EDF/AFP
Image caption A computer generated image shows how Hinkley Point C nuclear power station will look against the backdrop of the Somerset countryside

The boss of the energy company hoping to build a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in Somerset has made a plea for the government to approve it.

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, EDF chief executive Vincent de Rivaz accuses critics of "overlooking the positive impact" of the scheme.

EDF's board voted to approve the £18bn nuclear power plant in late July.

But the UK government postponed a final decision shortly after Theresa May became prime minister.

It has since said that arguments for and against the plant are still being examined.

A final decision is now expected within weeks.

'High motivation'

Mr de Rivaz writes: "Hinkley Point will have a lasting impact on our industrial capacity and will create thousands of jobs and hundreds of apprenticeships.

"Billions of pounds will be invested into the economy of south-west of England. Across Britain, dozens of companies and our own workforce are ready to deliver this project. Their motivation remains high and they are looking forward to getting on with the job.

"Detractors have filled many column inches and broadcast hours. We have chosen to let policymakers focus on the facts.

"However, some critics risk losing sight of the bigger picture by overlooking the positive impact and importance of this investment for Britain - and ignoring the basic and unchanged facts which underpin the project."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Vincent de Rivaz says Hinkley Point C would boost the UK economy

BBC political correspondent Chris Mason says that with Mrs May now back from holiday and set to meet her cabinet this week, Mr de Rivaz is seeking to publicly persuade and reassure.

EDF is investing in Hickley Point C jointly with Chinese state-owned nuclear company CGN.

"We know and trust our Chinese partners," writes Mr de Rivaz.

He adds that the plant cannot be hacked into online: "The control systems at Hinkley Point C will be isolated from IT systems and the internet."

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