Developers of a new nuclear power plant in Anglesey have launched a third consultation of its plans, unveiling a more compact design for the power station.
Horizon Nuclear Power are planning to submit a development consent order later this year, seeing plans for the station, Wylfa Newydd, to enter the next phase. Hoping to be generating power by 2025, these new plans take up a smaller area than the previous versions, with more buildings shared between the twin reactors. Plans also show an accommodation campus for temporary staff, which will be located at the construction site near Cemaes.
Suggesting a single “carefully managed” campus for workers on site, the campus will be built with 2,500 beds and the capacity for 4,000, highlighting the large-scale nature of this construction project. With leisure, shopping and health facilities also featured within the plans, it is Horizon’s aim to limit the burden on public services.
However, the new plans have faced criticism, with Gareth Winston Roberts, chairman of Amlwch Town Council, questioning what benefit it would bring to the local economy.
“There must be benefit for the people of north Anglesey as well as the company,” he said.
Duncan Hawthorne, chief executive of Horizon Nuclear Power, said:
“The changes we’re proposing will enable us to streamline our construction schedule, reduce the number of construction workers we need to bring in and temporarily house, and cut the number of development sites we need.”
While the size of the station itself has been the focus of the update, many other alternations have been made; many incredibly positive. According to the firm, a Welsh language and culture coordinator will be sourced to take the development forward, ensuring Welsh language sits at the heart of the development. Funding for a programme for new affordable housing, initially around the power station and nearby Amlwch has also been suggested, in addition to an investment programme for the island’s five secondary schools to improve science and technology facilities.
While all of these plans boasts a variety of advantages for the welsh economy, the plans do need to final go-ahead from the next UK government, needing to sign off an agreed price for the electricity generated from the scheme – known as a strike price.