National Grid halts construction of Moorside connection

19 May 2017

Construction of a power line designed to serve a proposed new nuclear power plant in the UK has been stopped because of uncertainties surrounding the future of the plant.

National Grid has “paused” work on the North West Coast Connection project, which would connect NuGen’s Moorside nuclear power plant with the grid. The decision has been made in response to NuGen’s announcement that it is conducting a strategic review of the project.

NuGen is planning to build three new reactors at Moorside, near Sellafield, in north-west England. The company, a joint venture between Japan’s Toshiba and French energy firm Engie, has been hit by financial problems at Toshiba and its reactor unit, Westinghouse. 

“As a result of focussing their efforts on this review, NuGen are pausing work on their development consent order for Moorside. In light of this, we have decided to pause our work to consent NuGen’s connection and take the time to understand NuGen’s programme to make sure our projects are aligned,” National Grid says. 

NuGen announced in mid-May that it would conduct a strategic review to consider the best way forward for the project in terms of finance and technology.

ENgie announced in April that it would exit the NuGen venture, transferring its 40 per cent stake to Toshiba. 

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