Government has launched (on 8th May) a consultation on the scope of what will become the latest (and eighth) National Policy Statement (NPS) in the suite of energy NPSs (six of which were designated in January): 

Fusion energy facilities: new National Policy Statement and proposals on siting - GOV.UK (

The broad policy proposals for the fusion NPS (EN-8) have been summarised in the Minister for Energy Security and Net Zero's ministerial statement as being:

  • Open-sited – a developer-led approach underpinned by site criteria rather than identifying sites. This approach would allow siting in more communities across the UK subject to local support.
  • Technology inclusive – the UK’s Fusion Strategy committed to supporting all fusion technologies and so the NPS will cover all fusion technologies.
  • Output agnostic – amend the Planning Act 2008 so that all fusion energy facilities in England will be Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects independent of capacity of thermal or electrical output. This approach was proposed in the New Nuclear NPS consultation so any amendments to legislation will be coordinated.

The consultation will be welcomed by the industry as an important step on the road to the designation of Government policy which will outline the approach projects should take to siting their schemes; always an integral part of the process.  It also follows previous Government policy consultations which have paved the way for an independent NPS for fusion, which will be separate to the existing EN-6 for fission up to 2025, and the emerging EN-7 for fission from 2025 onwards (on which a separate siting consultation was launched recently).  

Unsurprisingly perhaps, the siting ethos of EN-8 will follow that laid out for EN-7, which is to allow developers to bring forward sites on the basis of their own assessments against established siting criteria.   Albeit, in keeping with its earlier decision to leave fusion out of the nuclear site-licensing regime (for fission facilities), the application of those criteria are expected to reflect the lower risk-profile associated with fusion. 

We can expect (from the published timeline) a draft NPS for consultation in 2025.  Please do get in touch if you would like to discuss.