Looking after nature

Sizewell C will boost local biodiversity

We will look after the local environment before, during and after the construction of Sizewell C. Wildlife has thrived for decades around the existing Sizewell B station and before that at Sizewell A. We will build on a great track record and continue to protect this precious area of the Suffolk coastline.

We are not building on any land owned by RSPB Minsmere. Where a small part of our boundary meets RSPB land, we are creating a new area of wetland to allow wildlife to thrive.

Once Sizewell C is constructed, the nuclear licensed site will amount to 69 hectares – that’s less than 0.2% of the total area of the Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB.

Read our environment brochure to learn more.

  • 250
    Hectares for wildlife
  • 19%
    Net increase in biodiversity
  • <0.2%
    Suffolk AONB footprint
Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C
Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C Site life at Sizewell C
Our stunning nature reserve

Wild Aldhurst

Wild Aldhurst is a 67-hectare nature reserve we have created to compensate for some of the land we are using to build the power station.

It is already providing new habitat for water voles, otters, eels, amphibians, reptiles and birds, as well as rare and endangered species like marsh harriers.

Wild Aldhurst includes areas open to the public. Search for jeeps.frog.cools on what3words to find us on a map.

Sizewell C featured news

Frequently asked questions

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  • Will Sizewell C be too late to help get us to Net Zero?

    No. Sizewell C will start making a substantial contribution to Net Zero emissions from the moment it starts generating in the early 2030s. It will be pushing fossil fuels off the electricity grid and avoiding around 9 million tonnes of carbon emissions each year.

    Sizewell C will not only help to decarbonise the electricity mix, but it will also help to lower emissions in other sectors, like transport and heating.

  • How will Sizewell C's emissions compare with other low-carbon technologies?
    lifecycle carbon assessment graphic

    All large infrastructure projects, including solar and wind farms, produce carbon emissions during construction.

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) found that lifecycle carbon emissions for nuclear are comparable with wind, and lower than all other technologies.

    A peer-reviewed Lifecycle Assessment (LCA) for Sizewell C shows that emissions will be half the level attributed to nuclear and offshore wind by the IPCC.

  • Doesn’t radioactive waste make nuclear a harmful technology?

    All sources of energy generation produce some form of by-product or waste. Nuclear is the only generating technology which takes full responsibility for managing its waste.

    Radioactive waste and spent fuel from nuclear power stations are well controlled and safely managed to reduce any risk to people or the environment.

    By contrast, air pollution which includes waste emissions from fossil fuels kills around 7 million people each year.

    Nuclear is one of the safest ways of generating electricity. A recent report by Our World in Data concluded that “fossil fuels are the dirtiest and most dangerous, while nuclear and modern renewable energy sources are vastly safer and cleaner.”

    A study by climate scientist James Hansen found that by replacing fossil fuels, nuclear energy had prevented around 1.8 million air pollution-related deaths.

  • Why is the Suffolk coastline the right place to build Sizewell C?

    The land to the north of Sizewell B was identified as a suitable site for a new nuclear power station by the Government over a decade ago.

    Electricity has been safely produced from nuclear power at Sizewell for over half a century. Siting Sizewell C next to Sizewell B reduces the environmental impact from construction and the site can benefit from nuclear licencing and a grid connection.

    All nuclear plants in the UK are located near the sea so that water can be used in the power station cooling system.

  • Won’t rising sea levels threaten the power station?

    No. Sizewell C will be built on a platform standing approximately 7 metres above today’s mean sea level and will be protected by a sea defence structure that will be more than 14 metres above mean sea level. These and many other measures incorporated into the design of the power station will protect it from the sea.

    The sea defence will be adaptable and could be raised in future if sea level rise turns out be greater than current predictions. Based on current forecasts, any adaptation would not be needed until 2140 and only under the most extreme climate change scenario.

    We have performed thousands of hours of flood risk modelling using the highest plausible estimates for sea level rise in the Sizewell area. Our assessments show that the power station and access road will be built to withstand a 1-in-10,000-year storm and 1-in-100,000-year surge events.

    Although extreme storm events could result in some sea water coming over the sea defence and pooling around the site, it would drain away in a matter of hours. This is predicted, planned for, and reflected in the design of the entire Sizewell C site.

    Drones are flown over the Sizewell beach each month and photograph every 3cm square of the coastline, producing 3D maps of any changes. Radar and tide gauges will also allow us to monitor sea conditions and levels at Sizewell throughout the lifetime of the power station. If there are any unexpected developments, we will take action to address them.

    Read the 2021 Sizewell Coastal Defences report here and the draft Coastal Processes Monitoring and Mitigation Plan (CPMMP) here.