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Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant

Volume 977: debated on Thursday 31 January 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Energy what is the cost calculated at current rates for building the thermal oxide reprocessing plant at Windscale as proposed at the Windscale inquiry; what will be the cost at its estimated time of completion given that the current rate of inflation remains what it is at present; and whether the contract with Japan for increases in British Nuclear Fuels charge for reprocessing Japanese radioactive waste allows for increases to cover any rise in the cost to Great Britain.

The total cost of the plant at current prices is approximately £770 million; the estimated cost at the time of completion is £1,870 million after allowing for inflation at the rate of 15 per cent. per annum during its construction. Contracts for reprocessing fuel from overseas—including Jananese fuel—in the plant allow for increases to cover any rise in costs; BNFL will be paid on the basis of cost-plus, the cost covering both construction and operation of the plant.