Raised yesterday in comments by our Hon Member Mr BQ, EDF has opened the bidding on British Energy.
This is all highly political, and difficult to read in detail: but by way of marking the spectators’ cards we can list several solid principles:
· BE’s main value is as a collection of sites where it would be easiest to build new nucs
· Otherwise it is a gigantic liability
· EDF is an even bigger liability, but Sarkozy is playing double-or-quits with the whole EU
· People will always need electricity
· There isn’t much that can’t be done with (a) a guaranteed income stream and (b) an indemnity on decommissioning in your back pocket
This last statement is rather based on the easy financing conditions of recent years. I am continually probing utilities and other energy co’s on whether the Credit Crunch has bitten them yet, and they all say ‘no’. But I really wonder if this can remain the case indefinitely.
If it doesn’t, the lights will go out some time in the middle of the next decade.