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Greens Oppose Nuclear Gamble with Taxpayer Money

The proposed Hinkley Point nuclear-power station relies on a gamble with British taxpayers money, claims the South West Green Party. The Party has described a deal involving Chinese investment as an outrage. The deal would see the UK government offering to guarantee a level of return to Chinese investors that involves making a guess about the future market price for electricity. Since this is so uncertain, the whole project relies on British taxpayers taking the risk, say the Green Party.

Molly Scott Cato, Green Party lead candidate in the South West for next year's European elections, said:

"The Conservative government’s deal on the Hinkley Point nuclear power station really is a case of heads they win; tails we lose. Potential profits will now be offshored to China while the nuclear pollution will stay in the UK."

Greens are now looking to the EU, which they say may yet be able to block the deal. Professor Scott Cato, who is also the Green Party’s national finance speaker, went on to say:

"Since the deal involves such a large investment of public money it will be investigated under the EU's state aid rules. Greens will work to expose the economic and environmental risks inherent in the proposal, and we are thankful that EU scrutiny may still avert this socially and environmentally damaging policy dreamed up in Westminster."

The Green Party is the only UK political party to be committed to phasing out nuclear power, following the example of the German Green Party.

Notes

Molly Scott Cato is the lead European candidate for the Green Party in the South West. She is an internationally renowned green economist and is the Green Party National Finance Speaker http://southwest.greenparty.org.uk/euros2014starthere/molly-scott-cato.html

Hinkley Point's first impact will be to add to consumers' bills (Guardian Business blog) http://www.theguardian.com/business/blog/2013/oct/18/hinkley-point-nuclear-power-plant-consumer-bills

Extract: How is it meant to be good news that, among all the possible sources of capital to partner EDF at Hinkley Point, we have ended up with a company controlled by the Chinese Communist party?... guarantees from the UK taxpayer have now persuaded Beijing to climb aboard. This does not sound like a triumph in the making. It sounds instead like the latest instalment in the 30-year saga of the UK's shambolic and short-termist energy policy.

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