Just over half of the population support plans to build new nuclear power stations in Britain, our survey shows. This comes as the Government identifies eight potential sites for new power stations by 2025.
- 51% support the building of new plants
- 21% oppose the idea.
Disposal and disputes
Ministers believe that current nuclear power stations, which provide 20% of the UK’s electricity, need to be replaced by 2025 to prevent Britain becoming over-dependent on energy sources from abroad and to help reduce carbon emissions. However, opponents argue that nuclear power is expensive and generates dangerous radioactive waste which is difficult to dispose of.
The sites earmarked for the potential new power plants are all locations of existing or former stations: Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex; Hartlepool; Heysham, Lancashire; Hinkley Point, Somerset; Oldbury, Gloucestershire; Sellafield, Cumbria; Sizewell, Suffolk and Wylfa on the Isle of Anglesey.
According to Environmental Secretary Chris Huhne, Dungeness in Kent and Braystones and Kirksanton in Cumbria have been deemed unsuitable sites for environmental reasons. Existing power stations in Scotland have also been left off the list of potentials due to the Scottish Government’s opposition to future nuclear expansion.