Torness nuclear power station has been given a seven year life extension securing hundreds of jobs for the area.
It is one of four EDF Energy operated power stations across the UK to extend its lifespan and gives the 500+ Torness staff peace of mind knowing that it will remain open until 2030.
EDF Energy began talks with the Office for Nuclear Regulation about extending the operational life of its UK nuclear power stations in 2012 and announcing the success of these talks, chief executive officer, Vincent de Rivaz said: “Our continuing investment, our expertise and the professional relationship we have with the safety regulator means we can safely prolong the operating life of our nuclear power stations.
“Their excellent output shows that reliability is improving whilst their safety and environmental performance is higher than ever. In today’s extremely challenging market conditions, our belief that Government policy will be maintained and strengthened gives us the confidence to invest in our nuclear stations. This gives customers the best value low carbon electricity available.”
“It’s a great achievement by thousands of EDF Energy staff and partners in the supply chain who have worked so hard to show that we can deliver on performance, reliability and safety.”
Paul Winkle, station director added: “What we have demonstrated is that Torness will run safely and reliably through that period and generate enough electricity for about two million homes until 2030.
“We have a very proud family workforce who take great satisfaction in their work and to be able to say to that workforce you have a job until 2030 is very nice.
“Many of our workforce live in the local community. Our wage bill is around £40 million a year and that workforce will continue to put money into the local community.
“It’s also good for the Scottish economy - we are producing enough electricity to power two million homes.
Dunbar hotelier Philip Mellor also welcomed news of the power station’s extended lifespan.
“Hearing the news that Torness is going to be extended is fantastic news,” said Mr Mellor, who runs the Dunmuir Hotel.
“Certainly for us it gives us peace of mind that you know the business travel is going to use us and local parties and meetings will continue and come through our door.
“For the town the extension is another piece of good news. It keeps the town vibrant and keeps people here and the local economy strong.”
For fourth year maintenance apprentice Dan Martin it gives him security in his chosen career.
“The life extension means having a very secure career for the next few years and being able to get experience in the industry.
“Obviously it’s a massive positive for the local area because this is probably one of the biggest employers in the area.
“The town is busy and all the businesses benefit from it.”
Donna Anderson is one of three members of her family who all work at Torness and she was delighted to hear the news.
“The seven years life extension is absolutely fantastic because for myself and my husband it would take us past retirement age.
“Torness is a huge employer and it will continue to provide opportunities for jobs.
“Obviously you are spending in the local economy as well.”