Nuclear energy is a crucial component in the UK’s electricity mix, accounting for nearly 15% of all the electricity the UK generates and helping the country keep the lights on and meet its climate targets. It facilitates the use of renewables by providing predictable and reliable all-day generating capacity when the sun doesn’t shine and wind doesn’t blow. The UK’s nuclear power stations also boosts the country’s energy security, by reducing its reliance on imported fossil fuels.
But the impact of the civil nuclear industry on the UK economy extends well beyond electricity generation. Our research for the Nuclear Industry Association investigates the impact the industry has on the economy as a whole, especially the jobs market and the UK’s public finances. We find it supports an estimated £16.1 billion gross value added contribution to the economy, around 211,500 jobs, and around £7.1 billion in tax revenues. This impact is not spread evenly across the UK—24% occurs in the North West and 16% in the South West, where there are clusters of civil nuclear activities.
The study finds the nuclear sector is helping to address disparity in opportunities in the UK. Over half of the jobs within the civil nuclear sector are in largely rural areas. By providing highly-paid jobs in these areas, the civil nuclear industry helps to narrow the rural-urban wage gap. The industry’s employment is also over-indexed in local authorities where labour market participation is currently low and employment growth is predicted to be slow over the next decade. In providing job opportunities where they are most needed, the industry is helping to reverse regional inequality.
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The experts behind the research
Alexandra and Andy, members of our Industry Consulting team, are among the world’s leading analysts of a variety of industrial sectors. They combine their expert insight with our state-of-the-art economic models and tools to answer the crucial questions facing our clients.
Director of Industry Consulting
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