WESTMINSTER must end its “nuclear obsession” as costs for the Hinkley Point C nuclear plant spiral, according to the SNP.

EDF, the French company building the UK’s first new nuclear plant in decades, recently announced that the completion of the project has been delayed by another four years.

The company also said the final costs could end up being as much as £46 billion.

In 2007, EDF’s chief executive said the plant in Somerset would start producing energy “before Christmas 2017”.

It now looks as if only one reactor will be producing energy by 2029.

The National:

The SNP’s net zero and energy spokesperson, Dave Doogan MP (above), said only clean, renewable energy could be relied upon to bring down bills for consumers.

"This latest delay demonstrates that Westminster's nuclear obsession will do nothing to help people battling the Westminster-made cost of living crisis," he said. 

“For months we’ve heard endless lectures from the Tories on why nuclear is the way forward, yet time and time again we learn of how difficult this latest project is and how much it's costing the taxpayer.

“It’s abundantly clear that nuclear will cost more, is costing more, and will send bills soaring even further - all while households in Scotland can see clean renewable energy being produced in their own backyards.

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"With Westminster politicians like Rishi Sunak and Sir Keir Starmer refusing to invest properly in renewables - which would create upwards of 50,000 jobs in Scotland - our long-term energy security and prosperity is in jeopardy.

"It's clear that only the SNP are willing to stand up for Scotland's interest and harness the full potential of the green energy goldrush."

EDF said Covid-19, inflation and Brexit had all contributed to the rising costs and delay.

Despite new nuclear plants being discussed by then prime minister Tony Blair as early as 2006, the Hinkley Point C project wasn’t green-lit until 2016.

Back then, the cost of the plant was estimated to be around £18 billion.