After 44 years of electricity generation, reactor one at Wylfa power station on Anglesey will stop generating electricity today (30 December 2015).
Originally scheduled for shutdown in 2010, the reactor continued to produce energy for an additional five years, raising valuable additional revenue for the UK, and supporting hundreds of jobs. It now moves into the next stage of its lifecycle and the defuelling and decommissioning of the site.
Secretary of State for Wales Stephen Crabb said:
Wylfa has been a terrific success story for Anglesey and for the UK nuclear industry. The safe operation of the reactor over its lifespan is testament to the hard work of its skilled and dedicated workforce. I have visited Wylfa and have seen first hand the wealth of nuclear expertise and eager young apprentices on Anglesey. As attention turns to the decommissioning and clean-up of the site, it will continue to remain a vital source of employment in the local area.
But the future of UK nuclear is about more than just one reactor. UK nuclear is also about developing and exporting our world-leading decommissioning expertise, and boosting the domestic supply-chain, creating new skilled jobs across the country.
Hitachi’s investment in Wylfa Newydd underlines that Anglesey will continue to play a key role in UK energy generation. It also cements our position as one of the most attractive electricity investment markets in the world. The project offers significant benefits to the Welsh economy - particularly in north Wales - through increased high-quality employment and supply chain opportunities. Hitachi has already indicated that up to 60% of the supply chain involved in building Wylfa Newydd and a proposed site in Oldbury will be UK companies.
The Chancellor’s plan for the Northern Powerhouse is about balancing our growth, building a strong economy and maintaining a strong United Kingdom. Anglesey’s Energy Island can help ensure that north Wales plays a key part in this vision, and the economic revival taking place right across the UK.