The Hinkley Point C nuclear power station will receive £29.7 billion in public subsidies under the Contracts for Difference (CfD) mechanism, according to the National Audit Office (NAO).

The total is just shy of five times the £6bn estimated cost when the UK Government signed the contract in October 2013.

EDF Energy, the French power company that is due to build the station, is due to receive a strike price of £92.50/MWh under the 35-year contract, falling to £89.50/MWh if the company also builds a station at Sizewell in Suffolk.

The strike price is linked to inflation and the total cost has risen “due to reductions in projected wholesale prices”, the NAO said.

Nuclear not just ‘nice to have’

A spokeswoman for the UK Government said: “Nuclear is not just a nice to have.

“It is an essential part of our plan for a 21st century energy system that will power homes and businesses with reliable, low carbon electricity.

“Hinkley will generate enough low carbon electricity to power six million homes and around £10 from consumer bills will pay for it once it is up and running.”

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