A few weeks back Boris Johnson made reference to how the UK would shortly be building mini fusion reactors, courtesy of a generous grant of UK government funding (and thus brexit wasn’t going to be the disaster to UK science everyone is predicting). Of course, the actual nuclear scientists were quick to point out that this is about as accurate as pretty much any other Boris Johnson statement. Such as his claim there will be no border checks between Ireland and the UK post-brexit (which would result in the UK facing sanctions from the WTO, the EU, and the US, plus he’d be unable to prevent counterfeit goods or smugglers flooding the UK market and why would anyone give the UK a trade deal if you can smuggle stuff across the UK border via NI tariff free?).
As for the prospects of mini-nukes rolling out across the country, polls show little public support with very few willing to live close to such a reactor. And as I’ve mentioned before, the downside of mini-nukes is their lower economies of scale, something even nuclear industry sources are quick to acknowledge, while talking up the benefits of them as a niche energy source. Given the fact that the two main obstacles to nuclear power right now are the high costs and the low level of public support, why in blue blazes would you pursue a form of nuclear that is more expensive and creates more flash points for public opposition. In fact it probably explains why RR have been in talks with the French about selling off some of their nuclear business.