Chinese run Hinkley Point

(27 Posts)
IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Thu 15-Sep-16 22:10:20

Am I the only one who thinks it is somewhat inadvisable that the Chinese are to fund and operate Hinkley Point nuclear plant?

There have been many documented occasions of large scale Chinese state sponsored industrial espionage. Are we really to allow a suspect foreign government to run our nuclear facilities?

They are to design, build and operate, which means that backdoor code can easily be implemented. I really don't think I am being paranoid!

gettingtherequickly Thu 15-Sep-16 22:11:25

Yes, but you also believe that the earth is flat........

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Thu 15-Sep-16 22:16:47

Oh yes, I do!

HerRoyalNotness Thu 15-Sep-16 22:30:18

It's partial Chinese investment only. The bulk of it is EDF, a French company. And if I remember DH was wittering on about the construction being done by an American subcontractor. Quite a nice international feeling to it.

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Thu 15-Sep-16 22:37:11

Reports are that it's Design-Build-Operate. I would be relieved to not be right

No need for Stuxnet if you have direct control

cdtaylornats Thu 15-Sep-16 23:14:03

If the Chinese did design, build and operate it what exactly do you think any spies would find out?

It is however French designed and run, built by whoever is left after Brexit all the Chinese are doing is putting up the capital.

prh47bridge Thu 15-Sep-16 23:37:23

cdtaylornats is correct. China is an investor in this project and will own one third of the finished power station. EDF will own the bulk of it. The reactor will be supplied by Areva, another French company. The operator will be the NNB Generation Company, a subsidiary of EDF. I think concerns about Chinese espionage are overstated. Although they are putting in some money their lack of other involvement means their opportunities for espionage are much the same as with a project in which they had no involvement at all.

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 09:04:34

Because they have been guilty of State sponsored industrial espionage. If they have a part in the design and operation then of course there is a risk

prh47bridge Fri 16-Sep-16 09:37:30

But they do not have a part in design or operation. As has been pointed out several times it will be designed and operated by the French.

prh47bridge Fri 16-Sep-16 09:37:41

Are you not reading the replies? The Chinese will have no part in the design or operation. The reactor will be designed and operated by the French. China is just putting up some of the money.

prh47bridge Fri 16-Sep-16 09:38:24

Apologies for the double post. The first one didn't seem to work when I sent it.

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 09:42:16

But the security is being considered so there is a recognised risk

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 10:10:06

Chinese investor accused of industrial espionage

GCHQ also expressed concern. As did Teresa May before she was PM and was brushed off by Osborne. Then she delayed it when she became PM.

prh47bridge Fri 16-Sep-16 10:24:15

There is always a risk regardless of the level of Chinese involvement. Every such project needs to consider security. I'm glad that they are doing so.

GCHQ has NOT expressed any concerns. It does, however, want access to systems so it can check out security. Some elements of the press have picked up on this and tried to make something of it but the reality is that it is nothing special. GCHQ's remit includes supporting the cyber security of privately owned critical national infrastructure projects.

It remains the case that China's involvement in this project is limited to providing cash. They are not designing, building or operating the reactor. They are not in a position to modify the design, put back doors into the control systems or anything else. They may, as investors, have access to the designs which may be helpful for China's domestic nuclear programme but the design of EPR reactors is well known. There is plenty of documentation freely available on the internet. And having access to the designs will not allow them to take remote control of the power station.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Fri 16-Sep-16 10:29:04

I'm more concerned about the ridiculousness prices we'll all be paying for electricity from it TBH

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 10:38:52

Do you have a dog in this fight prh4? You seem to be very passionate that there is no risk. A quick google of the subject shows very many articles that have concern about the risk of this project. The Americans also appear to have been conerned

I think it was an ex-GCHQ head who expressed concern; will try to find the article.

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 11:29:41

I'm finding it confusing to determine the scope of the Chinese involvement.

This Article quotes

"The Chinese are particularly keen to proceed with a new nuclear plant at Bradwell in Essex because it will be their own design built under the UK’s tough safety regulations, allowing the company to use it as a showcase to the rest of the world. CGN sources indicated they hoped to submit their formal plans for approval this autumn."

Plus the Chinese appear to be supplying the hardware and software

prh47bridge Fri 16-Sep-16 13:01:28

Do you have a dog in this fight prh4? You seem to be very passionate that there is no risk

No, not involved at all and not passionate at all. Just pointing out the facts. There are always security risks in any project like this. There are certainly reasons to be concerned about CGN. However, when Theresa May asked for a security review various security experts, some of whom I know personally, commented that it looked like the government was looking for an excuse to dump the project and that there is no credible security threat. The general view of experts is that Hinkley Point C is at no greater risk than any other nuclear power station.

I'm finding it confusing to determine the scope of the Chinese involvement

Bradwell is a completely different case. Hinkley Point is in Somerset and will be designed, built and operated by the French. Bradwell is in Essex. Unlike Hinkley Point this may be built to a Chinese design (if it is built at all), although it is likely that it will still be built and operated by the French.

KeyserSophie Fri 16-Sep-16 13:09:20

The Chinese are notorious for IE- basically they'll nick any promising design they can lay hands on. I have seen with my own eyes a long wall miner that they basically stole the design of. China has no concept of IP rights whatsoever. However, seems the main risk is that copycat nuclear plants start popping up all over China as opposed to anything more sinister.

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 13:23:57

Ah sorry, mixed those two up. I understand what you are saying but the Chinese have been so blatantly cyber-hacking that I find it difficult to see how there would NOT be a risk of something sinister. It's not only critical infrastructure, it's nuclear. It scares the shit out of me.

KeyserSophie Fri 16-Sep-16 13:27:41

Ibelieve So is your concern that the Chinese take control of Hinckley Point and nuke us by stealth? Why would they actually want to do that?

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 13:30:59

No not necessarily nuke us us, but taking control by stealth. There are reportedly many backdoors to US built systems sold to foreign countries so it's not without precedent

IBelieveTheEarthIsFlat Fri 16-Sep-16 13:55:51

For example

www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jul/18/huawei-cyber-security-investigaton-kim-darroch

and

www.execreview.com/2016/08/the-chinese-firm-taking-threats-to-uk-national-security-very-seriously/

and Teresa May was definitely not comfortable with the Chinese being so involved in critical infrastructure. Neither am I

Sorry about it being DM

mathsmum314 Fri 16-Sep-16 20:59:34

Not getting this thread. Your worried the Chinese would steal nuclear secrets from a nuclear factory they built?

Wouldn't it be more likely the UK would steal the Chinese secrets? Duh?

ProfessorPreciseaBug Sat 17-Sep-16 08:31:58

This sorry little episode shows how we have been let down by politicians and public sector workers. This country was one of the first to build nuclear power stations. Now we have lost the technology to what we once used to do.

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