Europe’s first small modular reactors planned for Teeside

Cumbria-based Community Nuclear Power (CNP) have announced they have signed an agreement with American energy giants Westinghouse, that could lead to the first privately funded deployment of small modular reactors (SMR) anywhere in Europe.

The agreement is to build four Westinghouse AP300 SMRs (pictured below) in the North Tees Complex, an industrial estate created on former ICI land. The region is experiencing industrial and economic development, which the companies say is driving increasing demand for carbon-free electricity.

CNP said in a statement: ‘The component parts and agreements needed to make this ground-breaking proposition happen – land, capability, technology, private capital funding, and community demand – are in place. Our goal is to be generating clean energy with in ten years’ time.’

Small modular reactors have around a power capacity around one-third of a traditional nuclear power reactor. As the AP300 is based on Westinghouse’s AP1000 reactor, four of which are already deployed in China, the company are selling it as the only SMR based on a deployed, operating and advanced nuclear reactor.

The agreement is to build four AP300 SMRs in the region and CNP is working with strategic partners to develop a fully licensed site for the project, with a target of 2027. 

CNP said:  ‘There is mature market-led demand in Teesside for clean, reliable energy – in this instance a programme to build a specialised site that provides green sustainable power for the region and supports the development of a Green Energy and Chemical Hub on the North Tees Group Estate, with the ambition of producing power to liquids (e-fuels and e-chemicals) through an offtake ecosystem on the north bank of the River Tees, near Stockton-on-Tees.

‘The North Tees Group Estate is reclaimed and regenerated industrial land, and the provision of clean, always-on energy from at least four AP300s will help attract inward investment and high-value jobs.

‘This is in addition to the direct jobs and supply chains that construct and operate the site, and the adjacent services that support those manufacturing jobs – all supporting the UK’s drive for economic growth in the regions as well as its Net Zero ambitions.’

David Durham, Westinghouse President, Energy Systems said: ‘We want to thank Community Nuclear Power for this tremendous opportunity to deliver our advanced, proven AP300 SMR technology to the U.K. market. Our AP300 SMR is ideally suited not just to support grid generation, but also for industrial sites for generating clean and secure energy and the ability to produce hydrogen, e-fuels, desalination and district heating.’



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