Cost of Nuclear Power

Nuclear is expensive


the contract for the Hinkley C nuclear reactor  will start with a tariff of £92.5/MWh (A$180/MWh) before rising nearly three-fold over the following decades to A$500/MWh. That is 18c/kWh rising to 50c/kWh.

Renewable are becoming cheaper with time, so the difference will become more marked as time goes on.


France: five-year delay

Flamanville Unit 3, developed by EDF, started construction in December 2007 with an originally designed construction period of 54 months (start-up in 2012). In December 2012, EDF announced completion would be delayed until 2016 and that the cost would increase to EUR8.5bn (Rmb64bn, or Rmb37,200/kW). In November 2014, EDF announced a further postponement into 2017 due to delays in component deliveries from Areva.

Finland: 10-year delay

In August 2005, Finland began construction on the world’s first EPR unit, which was originally expected to go on line in 2009. It is currently expected to go live by late 2018, as its prolonged construction period (more than 13 years) has delayed it by nearly a decade. It may even be pushed back further. The cost overrun is also substantial. In December 2012, Areva estimated the total cost would come to EUR8.5bn (Rmb64bn, or Rmb37,200/kW), almost three times its original planned EUR3bn.

China - 3 year delay

These problems also exist in China. The new Taishan Nuclear Units 1-2, which could be the first GIII reactors, were originally scheduled to commence operations in end- 2013 and October 2014, but are now postponed to 2016, according to the latest guidance provided by CGN. Deutsche Bank thinks the delay is likely to extend to at least 2017. The cost is estimated to be Rmb73.2bn (Rmb20,900/kW), up 46 per cent from the original estimates of Rmb50bn, Deutsche says.

Nuclear monitor