Lord West of Spithead – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Energy and Climate Change

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Lord West of Spithead on 2016-03-11.

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether any of the recommendations of the Report from the Science and Technology Committee Nuclear Research and Development Capabilities (3rd Report, Session 2010–12, HL Paper 221), particularly the development of a long-term strategy for nuclear energy looking beyond 2025, have been taken forward.

Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth

Government provided a response to the Science and Technology Committee’s Nuclear Research and Development Capabilities Report in February 2012, setting out the actions that would be undertaken in response to the Committee’s recommendations. The response is attached.

Subsequently, Government worked with both Industry and Academia to develop and publish the Nuclear Industrial Strategy and a number of supporting documents in March 2013. The strategy set out, in detail, ambitions and plans for the role of nuclear in the UK energy mix to 2050 and beyond.

The Nuclear Industrial Strategy also set out the remit for the creation of both the Nuclear Industrial Council and the Nuclear Innovation and Research Advisory Board (NIRAB), to provide advice, assistance and coordination across the relevant parties in the nuclear landscape. A working group was also created under the umbrella of the Low Carbon Innovation Coordination Group (LCICG) to better coordinate public sector spending in this area.

In the recent Spending Review, the first since the Committee’s Report, Government announced at least £250m of funding for nuclear R&D. This funding is made up of 2 components: 1) an ambitious nuclear R&D programme; 2) a competition to select the best value Small Modular Reactor design for the UK.