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EDF's Latest Reactor Delay Adds to Pressure on U.K. Nuclear Plan

  • Normandy EPR takes twice as long as planned, budget triples
  • New delay increases `media and political pressure' in U.K.
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Ballooning costs and a further postponement in the start up of an Electricite de France SA nuclear plant in Normandy will increase the pressure on already delayed plans to build two facilities using the same technology at Hinkley Point in the U.K.

The startup of the atomic generator being built at Flamanville on the French side of the English Channel has been pushed back to the end of 2018, 11 years after construction began, and costs have more than tripled to 10.5 billion euros ($11.7 billion), the state-run utility said Thursday. The latest overrun came after the French regulator ordered tests earlier this year on possible weaknesses in the structure of the reactor vessel.