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Nuclear Energy Capacity

Volume 748: debated on Tuesday 16 April 2024

The historic nuclear road map that I announced in January reconfirmed the Government’s ambition to deploy up to 24 GW of nuclear power by 2050. The road map sets out plans to make investment decisions concerning 3 GW to 7 GW every five years between 2030 and 2040.

Nuclear is essential not just for our economy but for our national security. A truly sovereign supply does not just mean commissioning new reactors but increasing our skills base, so I welcome the £750 million invested in that. What steps is the Department taking to ensure that people in communities such as Heywood and Middleton can access that skills funding, so they can take advantage of high-skilled, well-paid jobs in the sector?

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. He is a doughty champion in this area—indeed, he should be with Atom Valley in his constituency. As he references, last month the Prime Minister announced significant investment in developing the nuclear skills pipeline, helping the sector to fill 40,000 new jobs by the end of the decade, including supporting plans to double the number of nuclear apprentices and quadruple the number of specialist sites and nuclear fission PhDs.