UK asked to pause Hinkley nuclear reactor development by UN over environmental concerns

The £18bn project is to be built by EDF and China General Nuclear Power

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A United Nations committee has asked the UK to suspend work on the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant, pending assessment of the environmental impact.

EDF, the French state-controlled utility firm, won approval to build an £18bn nuclear plant on England’s western coast in September.

To help shoulder the construction costs, EDF convinced China General Nuclear Power to take a 33.5 per cent in the project.

The UN Economic Commission for Europe recommended the halt until it established whether “a notification under the Espoo Convention” was useful, according to the statement. The Espoo Convention sets out the obligations of countries to “assess the environmental impact of certain activities,” according to the commission’s website.

Bouygues and Areva have received contracts for work at the plant.