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Government rejects MP’s plea to save nuclear new-build

Sue Hayman MP

The Government has rejected a plea by Workington MP, Sue Hayman, to save the Moorside nuclear power station project, as the developer, NuGen, confirms the loss of 70 jobs.

Sue, the co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Nuclear Energy, wrote to the Secretary of State for Business, Greg Clark MP, at the end of July, when NuGen announced it was consulting on job losses, calling on him to guarantee Government support for the project and 20,000 future Cumbrian jobs.

Mr Clark said in June that he “will consider direct Government investment” in the proposed Wylfa nuclear power station in Wales, but he has refused to make any similar commitment to Cumbria.

In a response to Sue’s letter, energy minister Richard Harrington MP said: “The Secretary of State and I understand the potential importance of the Moorside project to the local area. However (…) the proposed sale of NuGen is principally a commercial matter for Toshiba and it would not be appropriate for me to comment on those ongoing negotiations.”

Sue Hayman said: “This Tory government could not care less about the Cumbrian economy, the Moorside project, or the 20,000 future jobs it will bring.

“As usual, it’s one story for Cumbria and another story for everyone else. The Government has done a deal with China over Hinkley Point, Sizewell and Bradwell nuclear power stations, and it has promised to consider state funding for Wylfa to give investors the confidence to go ahead.

“So it is no wonder that Toshiba can’t find a buyer for NuGen, because it’s simply not a level playing field. The Government won’t commit to Moorside, but it has given the thumbs up to everyone else.

“Only Labour has promised to underwrite the Moorside project and build on Cumbria’s world-leading nuclear industry to bring in those 20,000 much-needed jobs.

“The Conservatives are selling out the people of West Cumbria while doing deals with China, and they should be ashamed.”

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