Hinkley Point C may be delayed until 2031

30 January 2024

A review of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power project in the UK has been finalised and has led to a re-evaluation of the schedule and costs. The aim of the project is to bring Unit 1 into service around the end of the decade. Several scenarios have been analysed:

  • The first scenario has becoming operational in 2029 as its target. This schedule is based on a target productivity for the electromechanical work, for which action plans are being drawn.  
  • A second scenario (base case), which assumes certain risks inherent in the ramp-up of the electromechanical work and the testing schedule do materialise, would see Unit 1 operational in 2030.
  • Given the complexity of the project, an unfavourable scenario assuming a further 12-month risk materialises could lead to Unit 1 being operational in 2031.

The costs of completing the project are now estimated at between £31 billion and £34 billion in 2015 values. The cost of civil engineering and the longer duration of the electromechanical phase (and its impact on other work) are the two main reasons for this cost revision. If the risk of an additional delay of 12 months mentioned above in the final scenario does materialise it would result in an estimated additional cost of around £1 billion in 2015 values.

EDF announced on 19 of May 2022 that the start of electricity production was scheduled for June 2027. At that time, the risk of further delay in the delivery of the two units was estimated at 15 months. In 2015 the cost of completion of the project was estimated between £25 and £26 bn.

In its recent history, the Hinkley Point C project, for which EDF first signed contracts in 2016, has achieved a series of milestones:

  • On 15 December 2023, the dome was lifted and installed on Unit 1;
  • The detailed design for the next phase of electromechanical (MEH) work was finalised;
  • 70% of the equipment to be installed on Unit 1 has been delivered;
  • The steam generators have been built and are ready for delivery;
  • Testing of the UK instrumentation and control system is underway;

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