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No new subsidies (not used)

Although the UK government has said repeatedly that there will be no subsidies to support the building of new nuclear power stations, a recent press report says that Peter Mandelson, UK Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills, "is ... pushing for the European Commission to relax state aid rules to make it easier for governments to provide funding for key low-carbon industries."

In this connection, "low-carbon industries" almost certainly means the nuclear industry. Given the large subsidies already enjoyed by the nuclear industry, there is certainly no justification for any new subsidies. More generally, we should be aiming to wind down the 'arms race' of subsidies as described on the page about Reducing subsidies.

It would be useful if as many people as possible would write to the European Commission, pressing them not to relax the rules about state aid. It should only take a few minutes. Please keep your letter quite short and focussed on the key point: that rules about state aid should not be relaxed for nuclear power.

A sample letter is shown below. It would probably have more impact if it were sent by conventional mail (using the postal address on the sample letter) but email should be fine (please use sg-plaintes@ec.europa.eu and stateaidgreffe@ec.europa.eu).

Sample letter

Neelie Kroes
Commissioner for Competition
Directorate General for Competition
European Commission
B-1049 Brussels
Belgium

Dear Neelie Kroes,

I understand from a recent press report that Peter Mandelson, UK Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills, "is ... pushing for the European Commission to relax state aid rules to make it easier for governments to provide funding for key low-carbon industries." Here, "low-carbon industries" almost certainly means the nuclear industry.

In this connection, I urge you strongly not to allow any relaxation of the rules that would make it easier for any government to provide new funding for nuclear power. The main reasons are these:
  • The nuclear industry is already receiving large subsidies, as described in the report "Nuclear Subsidies" (www.mng.org.uk/nsubsidies.pdf) prepared by the Energy Fair group (www.nonukes.org.uk/home).
  • There are more than enough alternatives to meet current and anticipated future demands for energy, not just electricity, as described on www.nonukes.org.uk/potential-of-renewables.
  • In terms of the fight against climate change, nuclear power is a serious mis-allocation of resources, as described on www.nonukes.org.uk/npcc.
In general, we should be aiming to wind down the 'arms race' of subsidies, as described on www.nonukes.org.uk/reducing-subsidies .

With thanks,

Yours sincerely,

[Please give your name, full postal address, email address and international phone number (+44 (0) ...)]