Horizon Nuclear Power

Horizon Nuclear Power Limited
Industry electricity generation
Founded 2009
Headquarters Gloucester, UK
Key people
Duncan Hawthorne - CEO
Products electrical power
Website horizonnuclearpower.com

Horizon Nuclear Power is a British energy company that is expected to build new nuclear power stations in the United Kingdom. It was established in 2009, with its head office in Gloucester, and is now owned by Hitachi.

Early history

The company was established in 2009 as an E.ON UK and RWE npower joint venture. The company announced its intention to install about 6,000 MWe of new nuclear capacities adjacent to the existing Wylfa and Oldbury nuclear power stations.[1][2] Horizon initially evaluated building either Areva 1,650 MWe EPR reactors or Westinghouse 1,100 MWe AP1000 reactors between 2020 and 2024.[3][4]

In March 2012 E.ON and RWE npower placed Horizon up for sale as a going concern.[5][6][7] One bidder was a joint venture of China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group and the China National Nuclear Corporation.[8]

However, on 29 October 2012 it was announced that Hitachi would buy Horizon for £696 million,[9] and the sale was completed on 26 November 2012.[10]

Hitachi ownership

Hitachi intends to build two to three 1,350 MWe Advanced Boiling Water Reactors (ABWR) on each site, but will first require a Generic Design Assessment for the ABWR by the Office for Nuclear Regulation, which is likely to take from two to four years.[11][12][13] The assessment began in April 2013, with an agreement that the costs of assessment will be covered by Hitachi-GE.[14] In August 2014, the proposed reactor type reached the third stage, out of four, in the GDA process.[15] This processes should be fully completed in 2018.

Horizon planned initial site work at Wylfa to begin in 2015, with building work starting in 2018 and generation starting in the mid-2020s.[16]

In January 2016 Hitachi announced a new UK company, Hitachi Nuclear Energy Europe, to lead a proposed joint venture with Bechtel and JGC Corporation, to cover the engineering, procurement and construction of Horizon's nuclear plants in the UK. Horizon Nuclear Power will continue to work on obtaining regulatory consents and making commercial arrangements.[17] However, later in the month Hiroaki Nakanishi, chairman and chief executive of Hitachi, expressed serious concerns to Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond over financing the development, following EDF's difficulty in financing its Hinkley Point C nuclear power station development. Hitachi is currently negotiating with the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) on electricity price guarantees, called Contracts for Difference (CfD).[18] The first project at Wylfa will be financed externally, with Hitachi only taking a minority stake.[19]

In May 2016 Duncan Hawthorne, previously CEO of Bruce Power in Canada, was appointed CEO of Horizon.[20]

See also


  1. "FAQs: OLDBURY". Horizon Nuclear Power. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
  2. "FAQs: WYLFA". Horizon Nuclear Power. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
  3. Murray, James (30 April 2009). "RWE/E.ON and EDF win nuclear auction". BusinessGreen. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
  4. Pfeifer, Sylvia; Blair, David (12 August 2011). "Doubts raised over UK energy investments". Financial Times. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  5. "RWE and E.On halt UK nuclear plans at Wylfa and Oldbury". BBC News. 29 March 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2012.
  6. Peston, Robert (29 March 2012). "Is the UK's nuclear future in jeopardy?". BBC News. Retrieved 29 March 2012.
  7. Gosden, Emily (21 June 2012). "Chinese companies bid to build new UK nuclear power plants". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 19 June 2012.
  8. Li Xiang (3 November 2012). "Nuke companies pursue future power abroad". China Daily. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
  9. E.On and RWE (30 October 2012). "RWE and E.ON announce sale of Horizon Nuclear Power to Hitachi Ltd" (PDF) (Press release).
  10. "Wylfa B: Hitachi takes over Horizon nuclear project". BBC. 26 November 2012. Retrieved 8 December 2012.
  11. Chazan, Guy; Pickard, Jim (29 October 2012). "Hitachi agrees UK nuclear purchase". Financial Times. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  12. "Hitachi buys UK nuclear project from E.On and RWE". BBC News. 30 October 2012. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
  13. "ABWR set for UK design assessment". Nuclear Engineering International. 16 January 2013. Retrieved 26 January 2013.
  14. "UK starts ABWR design assessment". World Nuclear News. 10 April 2013. Retrieved 22 April 2013.
  15. "Hitachi-GE UK ABWR progresses to GDA Step 3". Office for Nuclear Regulation. 28 August 2014. Retrieved 8 April 2015.
  16. Chris Dearden (21 October 2013). "Wylfa B nuclear power station: Housing concerns for workers". BBC. Retrieved 22 October 2013.
  17. "Hitachi enhances UK presence ahead of ABWR deployment". World Nuclear News. 19 January 2016. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
  18. Szu Ping Chan (30 January 2016). "Hinkley Point nuclear fiasco spooks Hitachi boss". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
  19. Emily Gosden (14 February 2016). "UK new nuclear plan will fail without private investors, says Horizon chief". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
  20. "Horizon CEO outlines fresh challenge for nuclear". World Nuclear News. 29 June 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
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