Energy suppliers E.ON and RWE npower have confirmed they will not be proceeding with plans to develop new nuclear power plants in the UK.
The companies have confirmed they will seek a new owner for their Horizon Nuclear Power joint venture, with the decision said to be the result of a strategic review of its viability.
In a statement, RWE highlighted the difficulties in acquiring funding for major capital projects in the tough global economic situation, which is a particular problem for large-scale, long-term developments such as nuclear.
Chief executive of E.ON UK Dr Tony Cocker said: "We believe that for the right company Horizon remains an attractive project - but sadly, at this time, not for us."
Both firms have stressed other new energy projects across the UK will be unaffected by the decision.
Commenting on the announcement, energy campaigner at Friends of the Earth Paul Steedman said it means it is "virtually game over" for new nuclear facilities in the UK.
While he said the government's nuclear strategy was "ill-judged", he warned it could leave the UK relying more heavily on expensive imported gas, which may be bad news for bill payers.
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