A COUNCIL has rejected an application for ground investigations to take place at the site of a new nuclear power station.

Maldon District Council’s planning committee has rejected the Chinese state-backed nuclear developer CGN’s application for permission to undertake ground investigations at the proposed Bradwell B site.

Campaign group Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group had called for the council to delay permitting the investigations.

The group’s chairman Prof Andy Blowers said: “From the moment CGN revealed its plans just before lockdown it became clear the Bradwell B project would be dead in the water.

“The massive scale of the project which would totally overwhelm the Blackwater area and the Dengie peninsula has proved too much to stomach, even for those who were seduced by the promise of thousands of jobs.

“The price, in terms of loss of environment and wellbeing, was simply too high.”

Energy experts Professor Andrew Stirling and Dr Philip Johnston said a recent public consultation into the power plant should be suspended, arguing it excluded crucial underlying questions.

Dr Johnston said: “The last full UK Energy White Paper not successfully challenged by judicial review was published in 2003 and even then found that nuclear power presents an unattractive option for the UK.”

They say the consultation should resume only when the Government publishes justification for nuclear power compared to other low carbon energy sources.

Bradwell Power Generation Company Limited said: “The first stage of consultation was undertaken at an early stage of development to understand people’s views about the proposals and enable them to influence these before we submit an application for development consent in a few years’ time.

“The response from the public has been high and we are now conducting detailed analysis of all of the points.

“It was not a consultation on the principle of nuclear, which is a matter for Government policy.

In response to the council, CEO of Bradwell Power Generation Company Limited, Alan Rayment said: "

“We were made aware that the district council refused permission for us to undertake surveys needed to develop the proposals for the Bradwell B nuclear power station project. 

"We are disappointed by the decision and we don’t agree with it. 

"However, we understand there are a range of opinions across the community about the Bradwell B Project, some of which are strongly held, which influenced the Council’s decision. 

"We will seek to better understand these concerns and consider carefully how we can best address them as we continue to develop the project. 

"The feedback from the Stage One consultation that we have just completed will provide a firm foundation that we will build on as we increase our engagement locally. Bradwell B is a project of national importance and will bring huge benefits to the local community and we are fully committed to working with community leaders to ensure these are delivered.

"Regardless of the sentiment expressed, I thank everyone who has engaged with us so far. Your comments are extremely valuable."