Two Bassetlaw power station sites in running for 'world-leading' fusion energy plant

Two Bassetlaw power stations have been earmarked as a potential destination for a brand new power plant.

Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 10:31 am

West Burton A and and the decommissioned Cottam power station, both near Retford, have been nominated by Bassetlaw District Council for the world's first prototype fusion plant.

The move forms part of a government project known as STEP- the first stage in the UK’s bid to be the first country to commercialize fusion energy.

Rather than the conventional nuclear power - nuclear fission, in which atoms are split - it is hoped that the new plant will be part of a new generation of nuclear power known as ‘nuclear fusion’, in which two or more atoms are combined.

West Burton A powe station, based near Retford.

Supporters say that nuclear fusion 'offers a virtually limitless source of clean electricity by copying the processes that power the Sun'.

Councillor Simon Greaves, leader of Bassetlaw District Council said: "For over half a century, Bassetlaw has been at the heart of UK energy production and we are proud of the contribution this has made to the national economy.

"As we look to the future, we need to see a move to a more sustainable means of energy production with dramatically reduced carbon emissions.

"We want to help support this transformation and that is why we are supporting the potential nomination of a former coal fired power station in the district for consideration as a potential location for the next stage of fusion research.

"While it is great that the Government had announced a free port at East Midlands airport it is also important that they deliver on the recognition that Bassetlaw is a high priority area in relation to the Levelling Up agenda.

"Securing the future of energy production in Bassetlaw and the jobs and investment that comes with that would be a big step in making good on these promises.

"This is only the start of the process and there remain many issues to be considered, but given the existing infrastructure and our history of power generation we are confident that Bassetlaw is the right place for the future of energy production."

Following the first round of nominations, it is expected further national assessments of sites will be made based on social, commercial and technical criteria.

Construction of the plant is due to be completed by 2040.

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