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.