Nuclear clear-up

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Douglas Turner (Letters, 16 April) seems to think that the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) is responsible for decommissioning privately owned nuclear power plants in the UK.

This is not true.

EDF, the only operator of such plants in Britain, will pay for the decommissioning from the Nuclear Liabilities Fund (a Scottish-registered company), which held £8.652 billion at 31 March, 2012.

The NDA is only responsible for managing the UK’s public civil nuclear liabilities, including all assets and nuclear liabilities on BNFL’s sites at Sellafield, Drigg, Capenhurst and all Magnox nuclear power plants.

Since the state built all these facilities, it is only fair that it pays for their decommissioning. In fact, the state also built all EDF’s nuclear plants.

The first privately built nuclear station in the UK will be built by EDF at Hinkley Point in Somerset. Douglas Turner has a point in that all electricity-users pay for the decommissioning through electricity bills.

But he is wrong in claiming that the cost would be met through taxation.

Steuart Campbell

Dovecot Loan

Edinburgh

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