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Progress on maintaining generation from nuclear sources

Summary

Assessment of Nuclear in GB

Nuclear power has provided about 20% of GB's electricity for some time. However, the amount of energy it produces is currently decreasing year on year, and the amount of electricity generated consistently falls short of National Grid figures.

As you can see from the chart generation using nuclear sources is currently underperforming against the National Grid's figures.

In Great Britain there are currently 8 nuclear power stations. Between them they can generate about 9 GW of power. All but one of these sites is planned for closure by 2030, leaving just Sizewell B in operation.

The medium to long term outlook for nuclear power is therefore very reliant on the successful completion of Hinckley Point C, the only new nuclear power station which is currently being built.

Without firm commitments to building more new power stations the capacity to generate electricity will be very significantly reduced to 2030 and beyond, and it is hard to see which other source can fulfil the role of satisfying base electricity demand.

Existing and future sites

Some of the planned replacement facilities have been cancelled.

Hinckley Point C is currently scheduled to be operational by about 2027. If it operates to specification, this single plant should produce 7% of the UK's electricity for 60 years. However, if it suffers further delays it will significantly impact the National Grid's ability to meet base demand even futher.

For more information about nuclear, see our Nuclear page.

Last updated July 2021

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(Graph based on National Grid data.)