Doubts cast on EDF’s ability to build power stations on time and budget
French auditor questions wisdom of state-owned utility’s involvement in building the new Hinkley Point C power station in Somerset
France’s state auditor has questioned the ability of the company building Britain’s next nuclear power plant to construct new reactors within “acceptable” costs and time-frames. State-owned EDF has already said that its Flamanville nuclear plant in Normandy will now cost €12.4bn due to the expense of fixing 66 faulty welds. On top of that, the project will cost another €6.7bn, according to France’s Court of Accounts in a new report.
Presenting the damning 148-page report this week, Court of Accounts chief Pierre Moscovici said: “There is still uncertainty on the ability of the French nuclear industry, despite its current strong efforts, to build new nuclear reactors within a time frame and costs that remain acceptable.” The criticism follows a £3bn surge in costs at the Hinkley Point C reactor EDF is building in Somerset. The bill for the project will now be £22.5bn – £2.9bn more than previously forecast – with overruns paid for by EDF.