MPs to vote on new nuclear programme

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The Independent Online

The UK's nuclear new build programme will effectively kick off next week when the Government's plans are put before Parliament.

The National Policy Statement for Nuclear Power Generation is expected to be voted through on Tuesday, and give the go-ahead to a wave of new nuclear power stations.

This will come as a relief to the nuclear industry, worried about delays because of the summer recess. It was believed that this could set back the start date by at least a year.

Equally importantly, the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan led to the Government's commissioning the chief nuclear inspector, Mike Weightman, to conduct a safety review of UK reactors. This has delayed the licensing process, with Mr Weightman's final report not due until the autumn.