HARTLEPOOL’S nuclear power station has reached a major milestone in its history.
The site near Seaton Carew marked the 30th anniversary of the day it first began generating electricity yesterday with a series of events.
Station director Simon Parsons said: “This is an important milestone for everyone at the station, and one they should be very proud of.”
Since 1983, the site has generated more than 150 terawatt hours of electricity. The site produces enough low carbon electricity to power around two million homes every minute of every day.
The site, owned by EDF Energy, has also avoided around 100 million tonnes of CO2 emissions – equivalent to removing all the vehicles from UK’s roads for around two years.
Around 700 people are employed at the site, 550 EDF Energy employees and about 150 full-time contract staff.
Andy Spurr, managing director Nuclear Generation, said: “EDF Energy enjoys strong support from the community around Hartlepool and we are committed to being as open as possible in Teesside and at all our nuclear power stations in the UK.”
Hartlepool power station has an operating life until 2019, but the aim is to see the site gain a further life extension, maybe up to five years.
A decision on this life extension will be made by EDF Energy by 2016 and will depend on technical and economic factors but, ultimately, is a commercial decision for the business to make.
Mr Parsons added said: “It is exciting to think that with the correct planning and investment that we can take this plant into the mid 2020s, as that means continued employment for this area.
“But first I think we should enjoy our 30th birthday, and reflect on what we have already achieved since 1983.”