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SDLP's Ritchie hits out at plans for £18bn Hinkley Point nuclear plant

By Rebecca Black

Published 29/07/2016

Opposition: Margaret Ritchie
Opposition: Margaret Ritchie

South Down MP Margaret Ritchie has voiced her opposition to plans for the first new UK nuclear plant in 20 years.

French firm EDF - which is financing most of the £18bn Hinkley Point project in Somerset -approved the funding at a board meeting, and contracts were due to be signed on Friday.

However, the plans suffered an unexpected setback after the government delayed a final decision until early autumn.

Business Secretary Greg Clark has said the government will "consider carefully" before backing it.

The SDLP's South Down MP Margaret Ritchie said she would prefer to see the government invest in renewable energy.

"I have opposed the government's plans with Hinkley Point from the beginning," she said.

"By carrying on with the plans it is clear that, even with a new Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Conservative government still cares more about seeking prestige from impractical mega-infrastructure projects than they do about the environment or the taxpayers who will have to pay higher energy costs for decades.

"Rather than spending good money after bad on a project unlikely to deliver the benefits promised, we should be investing in diverse, sustainable, renewable energy."

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