Five Notable Developments In Nuclear This Week 19.09.19

1. Fusion test facility to open in Rotherham

The UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) is going to open a new fusion energy research facility in Rotherham, Yorkshire. The facility will cost £22 million and is hoping to engage industry in commercial fusion energy development. Once completed, the project could act as a major source of low-carbon electricity. The main role of the facility will be to develop and test joining technologies for fusion materials as well as components including novel metals and ceramics.

(UK Atomic Energy Authority, New fusion test facility to open in Yorkshire, 16 September 2019, Link)

2. Final version of Radioactive Waste Strategy published

In 2016, the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) made a commitment to develop a single radioactive waste strategy for the NDA group. Following a twelve week consultation period, the final version of the Radioactive Waste Strategy has been published.

(Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Radioactive Waste Strategy, 16 September 2019, Link)

3. Sellafield welcomed as part of northern green energy revolution

At the launch of its northern energy strategy, the Northern Powerhouse Partnership stated that the pioneering work of Sellafield and its supply chain can provide a foundation to build a low carbon energy industry in the north of England. Jamie Reed, Sellafield Ltd’s head of corporate affairs welcomed the news commenting that they are ‘very supportive of the aims and ambitions of NPP’s strategy’ and that ‘low carbon energy production is crucially important for economic growth and to meet the UK’s target of zero emissions by 2050.’

(Sellafield Ltd, Sellafield success can be a launchpad for northern growth, says report, 13 September 2019, Link)

4. Minister for Industry and Business makes statement to International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference

On Monday 16 September 2019, Nadhim Zahawi, Minister for Industry and Business, made a speech to the 63rd International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference in Vienna. In the speech, Nadhim reasserted the UK’s commitment to reaching net zero by 2050 and stated that nuclear energy will play a key role in reaching this target. He states that the Nuclear Sector Deal is bringing industry and Government together and that the UK Government is currently exploring innovative financing models for new nuclear projects.

(Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, UK Statement to the 63rd International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference, 17 September 2019, Link)

5. Largest fusion reactor hires GDES Surface Treatment Business Unit for coating applications

Fusion for Energy, the EU organisation responsible for overseeing Europe’s contribution to INTER, has engaged the services of the GDES Surface Treatment Unit for the application of specific coatings to the building that will house the ITER machine. The work will take place over three and a half years and will involve up to 40 workers from the French subsidiary of the company. The INTER project involves 35 countries collaborating to test the potential of fusion as a large-scale, carbon-free source of energy.

(Nuclear Industry Association, GDES participates in the construction of the largest fusion reactor in the world, 18 September 2019, Link)

Brevia Consulting provides straightforward political advice and support to businesses and organisations.

Discover how Brevia can provide public affairs support to your organisation by calling the Brevia Energy Team on 020 7091 1650 or emailing



What the Energy Security Strategy tells us about the Government’s current priorities

After several weeks of reported delays, disagreements and leaks, the Government has finally published its Energy Security Strategy. Crucially, the Strategy provides us with an insight into the main influences and influencers of this Government. With the next general election a mere two years away, the Prime Minister appears to be moving away from the climate focus seen at COP26. Instead focusing on internal party politics and maintaining support within the Conservative . Below, Brevia has unpacked some of the telling signs of what is currently influencing Government direction on energy policy.

Read More »

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will impact UK energy policy

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has changed the world. The ways it has done so are yet to be fully understood. Many of our post Cold War assumptions have been upended: Germany has abandoned its longstanding policy of maintaining a limited armed forces to commit €100 billion to defence spending; Switzerland has departed from its historical neutrality to apply sanctions to Russia; Finland is now openly discussing NATO membership and things we had assumed would never happen continue to do so on a daily basis. Set against the human tragedy that is unfolding in Ukraine, these events can seem small or insignificant in comparison. Nonetheless, they are likely to have enduring consequences for everyone in Europe. Particularly when it comes to how Europe, including the UK, powers itself.

Read More »

What did the White Paper tell us about the Levelling Up Agenda?

Last week, the Government published its long-awaited Levelling Up White Paper. The White Paper goes some way to answering the vexed question of ‘What is levelling up?’, by setting out twelve missions the Government hopes to accomplish by 2030. In addition, the Paper sets out a framework for extending devolution in England which could increase the transparency of the process. However, new funding commitments are thin on the ground, and critics suggest the Government has not provided enough money for Levelling Up to succeed.

Read More »
  • Get in touch to arrange your free monitoring trial.