E.ON turns to Edelman as nuclear debate rages

E.ON has hired Edelman for a wide-ranging public affairs brief as the energy giant looks to develop its nuclear portfolio and counter opposition from green campaigners.

Nuclear power: controversial
Nuclear power: controversial

E.ON head of public affairs and community relations Jonathan Smith confirmed the appointment this week.

'Edelman will offer us support lobbying the Government and political audiences,' said Smith.

'It will also carry out an information programme, getting the message across about the urgency to replace generation capacity. We also have plans for new nuclear stations. Edelman will be involved in work for the upcoming white papers.'

The energy company started its search for PR support last month as environmental campaigners opposed a controversial new coal-fired power station at Kingsnorth in Kent (PRWeek, 14 February).

Pressure groups Greenpeace and the World Development Movement are currently campaigning against the contentious Kingsnorth station, claiming the plans undermine government carbon-cutting initiatives.

The World Development Movement was unimpressed by the hire of a PR agency. 'No matter how good Edelman is at its job, it will not be able to drown out the voice of legitimate public concern over E.ON's plans to build a carbon-belching coal fire power station in Kent,' said the charity's head of campaigns Beverley Duckworth.

Smith stressed that Edelman would be responsible for promoting all of E.ON's interests across the gas, coal, nuclear and renewables sectors, not just lobbying for Kingsnorth.

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