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UK presents Sector Deal for nuclear
UK details commitment to advanced nuclear technologies
Its key elements include: up to GBP56 million for research and development for advanced modular reactors; GBP86 million for a national fusion technology platform at Culham, Oxfordshire; GBP40 million for a facility to support the design of advanced nuclear technologies; GBP32 million for an advanced manufacturing and construction programme; and GBP30 million for a new national supply chain programme.
It also outlines a commitment from industry to reduce the cost of new nuclear build projects by 30% by 2030 and the cost of decommissioning old nuclear sites by 20% by 2030. In addition, it says there will be a new review to look at ways to accelerate the clean-up of nuclear 'legacy' sites. It also makes a commitment to increasing gender diversity in the civil nuclear workforce with a target of 40% women in nuclear by 2030.
Harrington announced the intention to open the Generic Design Assessment (GDA) process for small and advanced modular reactors in the new year, with registration for expressions of interest opening before the end of the year. In preparation for this, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the UK regulators will aim to hold a GDA workshop in due course to engage with stakeholders.
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It causes me no small amount of confusion, when a country that is still undertaking austerity measures, can somehow magic up millions for nuclear research. Simply: where is the required money coming from?