Live updates

Nearly 1,000 jobs secured as Dungeness Power Station life is extended by 10 years

The life of Dungeness Power Station in Kent is to be extended by 10 years, safeguarding nearly a thousand jobs. The plant, operated by energy giant EDF, will continue in operation until 2028 thanks to a 150 million pound investment.But environmentalists say the money should be spent on renewable energy. Iain McBride reports.

Extension of Dungeness is 'bad news', says MEP

“10 more years of unsafe and expensive nuclear energy production is bad news. Instead we should be focusing our efforts on the switch to a truly sustainable energy future – one which focuses on renewable energy and energy efficiency, and which would deliver more jobs, faster carbon reductions and a fundamentally more democratic energy system fit for the future.”

– Keith Taylor Green MEP for South East England

Advertisement

Dungeness B life extended by a decade

EDF Energy has extended the expected life of its Dungeness B nuclear power station by ten years.

This means it is due to continue generating low carbon electricity until 2028, producing enough power each year to supply the equivalent of 1.5m homes.

Credit: EDF

The decision has been made possible by a £150m investment programme to extend the life of the station. It comes after extensive reviews of the plant’s safety cases and work with the independent nuclear regulator, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR).

The life extension at Dungeness B is part of a wider EDF Energy programme to extend the lives of its eight nuclear power stations.

According to EDF, it will secure 550 jobs and work for 200 contractors at the site, as well as maintaining essential expertise in engineering and the UK nuclear industry.

Young apprentices have the power

More and more young people are now choosing to become an apprentice rather than go onto university - partly due to the rising cost of a degree.

At Dungeness Power Station, a scheme to recruit six is underway. But competition is tough, because each post attracts around three hundred applications. This from David Johns.

Advertisement

  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

Making a beeline for Kent

A project to reintroduce short-haired bumblebees to Kent entered its third year today - as a new group of Queen bees were brought to Dungeness. They'd been collected in Sweden, as the species became extinct in Kent in 1988.

It's hoped the queens will settle at the site and start breeding. David Johns went to see the release. He spoke to bumblebee expert Dr Nikki Gammans, the RSPB's Jane Sears, and volunteer Alan Kenworthy.

Jobs hope for Dungeness workers

The owners of Dungeness B power station say they are confident that its lifetime will be extended until 2028. The facility was due to be decommissioned in four year's time. A final decision on its future will be made by the end of this year.

The station employs around 750 staff and is claimed to contribute around £30m to the local economy each year.

Dungeness in Kent could remain in operation until 2028 Credit: Press Association Images

Aircraft crash search suspended

A search for an aircraft which is believed to have crashed in the English Channel off the Kent coast has been suspended due to fading light.

The search started this afternoon after reports that an aircraft had failed to arrive at its destination airport in France.

Dover Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC), which is co-ordinating the search, was first contacted at 2.30pm.

A single engine aircraft with one person on board failed to arrive at Le Touquet airport having left Blackbushe Airport in Hampshire earlier on today.

A French search and rescue helicopter located wreckage approximately 15 miles off Dungeness.

A search and rescue helicopter joined in with the search, along with the Dungeness RNLI lifeboat, and three French vessels.

Further discussions will be held in the morning as to the next course of action.

Load more updates