UK nuclear workforce at highest for 20 years, says NIA

12 September 2023

The number of people employed in the civil nuclear sector in the UK has risen to 77,413, according to the Nuclear Industry Association's annual Jobs Map survey.

(Image: Alex Hunt/WNN)

The number of people employed is up 20% on the previous year, including EDF's Hinkley Point C new nuclear project (pictured above in July) now employing 9500, up from 8000 in 2022.

New and emerging technologies continue to grow new employment opportunities, with 530 working on the development of the Rolls Royce small modular reactor project, which is up 200. The cluster of fusion pioneers and companies at Culham now employ more than 2300 people, the NIA said.

Tom Greatrex, the association's CEO, said: "The nuclear industry already sustains tens of thousands of high-skilled, well-paid jobs which make a significant contribution to UK energy security and our net zero future. We can have lots more of these jobs and opportunities for the next generation if we get on with committing to new projects, both large and small reactors, for more secure, reliable and home-grown power."

Andrew Bowie, UK minister for nuclear, said the country was "witnessing a nuclear revival ... these projects will be at the heart of our efforts to deliver clean, reliable and secure home-grown energy sources, boosting our security and cutting our carbon emissions - and all while helping grow the economy and create jobs."

The NIA says that training of tens of thousands of workers is needed, if the UK is to have the 200,000 or more workers it will need to hit its target of 24 GW of nuclear energy capacity by 2050.

The Jobs Map shows employment by region and parliamentary constituency and is compiled using information from participating members of the NIA, which is the trade association for the civil nuclear industry in the UK, representing more than 250 companies. The highest employment in the nuclear sector is in the north west of England where 27,024 people are employed in decommissioning, fuel cycle research and reactor design - up 5% on 2022 - and the south west of England with a total of 23,938 workers, up from 15,011.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News