BRITAIN’S poorest households face higher energy bills to pay for the government’s bungled handling of the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power station, MPs warned yesterday.
The public accounts committee voiced concerns that consumers are “locked into” the expensive 35-year deal.
The MPs said no-one was protecting the interests of energy consumers over the deal and questioned why the government has not revised the terms since the project was commissioned in 2013.
The original cost of £6 billion has now soared to £30bn, according to a Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) forecast cited in the committee’s report.
Its operator, French energy giant EDF, has been given a guaranteed price — above current prices — for the electricity it produces, the MPs noted.
The report said the average annual household electricity bill would rise by £10 to £15 to support the new power station up to 2030, which could disproportionately affect the poorest households.
A BEIS spokesman said it had ensured consumers would not pay anything until the station generates power in 2025.
But Greenpeace UK head of energy Hannah Martin argued: “Hinkley looked like a dodgy deal over a year ago, but now that offshore wind is so much cheaper than new nuclear, this project makes absolutely no financial sense.”