British subsidies for the development of small nuclear reactors

British subsidies for the development of small nuclear reactors

Photo: ANP

The British government is allocating £157 million (€183 million) to support new development of small nuclear reactors. With this money, the UK hopes companies will make faster progress in their research into so-called small modular reactors (SMRs).

The British government has set a goal of generating a quarter of its electricity from nuclear power by 2050. The country wants to become less dependent on fossil fuels and reduce emissions. The grants are part of the Great British Nuclear Initiative. SMR reactors must be much smaller than normal nuclear reactors. So it will be much cheaper and faster to build them too. Most reactors must be built in a factory and then transported to the site.

The development of such reactors is still in its infancy. Rolls-Royce, among others, is working on this. That UK company received a £210m grant in 2021 to research SMRs.

The UK is also building large new power plants. These are Hinkley Point C and Sizewell C, which are being built by the French energy group EDF.

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