New Trident 'could cost UK £97bn'

THE cost of a replacement for Britain's Trident nuclear deterrent could reach £97 billion, environmentalist group Greenpeace has warned.

In a new report, Greenpeace suggested the procurement of submarines and missiles could reach about 34bn – around double the 15-20bn estimate cited by ministers – while running costs could eat up as much as 6 per cent of the Ministry of Defence budget.

The report also predicted the Royal Navy's two new aircraft carriers would cost 5bn to build, compared to the latest official estimate of 3.9bn.

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And it warned that operating the ships, equipping them with US F35 warplanes and building a fleet to protect them could raise the total bill above 33bn.