New build projects, including the controversial Hinkley Point C, will boost job prospects

Another 50,00 jobs could be added to the 65,000 people already employed in the UK’s nuclear new build programme, according to new research.

The new figures, released today by the Nuclear Industry Association (NIA), reveal where the 65,000 people employed across the UK’s civil nuclear sector are working.

Combined, the Hinkley Point C, Wylfa Newydd and Moorside new build projects could create more than 50,000 job opportunities during construction, with at least 3,000 permanent roles spread across the three sites once operational.

Currently there are 1,500 workers on site at Hinkley Point C and overall the project is due to create 25,000 job opportunities. NuGeneration’s Moorside programme in Cumbria will create 20,000 during construction, while Horizon Nuclear Power estimate 6,000 people will be on site at Wylfa Newydd during the peak construction phase of the project.

The NIA said the new build programme will upgrade infrastructure, develop skills, create opportunities for business, secure inward investment, supplement investment in R&D, deliver clean energy and drive growth across the whole country.

Tom Greatrex, the association’s chief executive, said: “Construction began at Hinkley earlier this year and already there are over 1,500 people currently working on site. With 25,000 job opportunities due to be created by this one project alone, the economic benefits of a comprehensive 18GW new build programme will be enormous.  

“We know new nuclear will help ensure the lowest-cost route to decarbonisation, generating the reliable, round the clock, low carbon electricity the UK needs.

“We also know it will create thousands of high-skilled, well paid jobs in areas of the country where jobs are often hard to come by. The focus now must be on delivering the huge potential stored up in the planned new build programme and ensuring Hinkley is just the first of a succession of nuclear driven economic boosts for the country.”

Last week Hinkley was described as a “risky and unproven project” by the National Audit Office, with consumers likely to pay higher bills for decades to help pay for the scheme.