Make Cumbria Safe! For starters – STOP bringing waste and reprocessing

Radioactive Particles on Cumbria's Beaches
Radioactive Particles on Cumbria’s Beaches

A new petition has gone online written by a Cumbrian councillor asking Secretary of State, Ed Davey to Make Cumbria Safe. A good start would be to stop ALL transports of waste to Sellafield and to cease churning out ever more plutonium from the reprocessing of that waste.

Please support this petition and MAKE CUMBRIA SAFE
sign and share widely – Petitions are great but won’t work on their own, they need to be backed up by action. Direct action is most effective in raising this to public consciousness. Please join the protests or if that is not to your taste, send letters to Ed Davey urging him to halt all transports of nuclear waste to Sellafield, the site is already “an intolerable risk,” and to stop all reprocessing – a practise banned in every country apart from here and France, as the waste it produces is too hot to handle, for us and for future generations.

Saturday, March 9, 2013
a 3-fold event:
*A celebratory walk to acknowledge the County Cabinet’s NO vote.
* Highlighting of the need to secure existing waste in situ at sellafield and improve storage facilities/minimise radioactive contamination of the surrounding environment
* Meet in solidarity with the people of Fukushima and marking the anniversary of the disaster

Radiation from Sellafield affects the local environment and particles from the plant cause contamination of the the surrounding area.
Testing of the beaches around the plant have identified a record number of radioactive particles.
Unlike Dounreay, the authorities in Cumbria have decided against warning signs on the beach.

In partnership with 3 Weeks to Save the Lakes, we’ll be putting some notices up on the beach. Followed by a walk to the Sellafield gates with banners to show solidarity with the Fukushima demo in London.

Meet Seascale car park for departure at 10.30 am

Fukushima Demonstration in London – Saturday 9th and Monday 11th March

Sign the Petition here – Go on…its the least you can do!

The Government must immediately commit the investment to make Sellafield safe. This is one item of expenditure that simply must not be cut back. The Government must also order the NDA to stop shipping waste into Sellafield..

Notes from the “call in” meeting in Carlisle 19th Feb

Excellent write up from The ‘call in’ meeting. These handwritten notes have been made by Fiona of 3 Weeks to Save the Lakes

No mean NO!
No means NO!

Please note- this is all paraphrased not quotes and is based on notes taken at the time- I don’t do shorthand, I couldn’t get every point.

3 councillors had made the call in (David Southward, Wendy Skillicorn, Frank Morgan)- the chair announced that they would speak 1st: 1/2hr
This was followed by 1/2 hr from representatives from cabinet (Eddie Martin/Stewart Young)

Then representatives from the panel could ask questions of both sides for clarification
Both sides  could explain further and answer questions from opposition
Then adjournment to discuss terminology (this didn’t actually happen as it was irrelevant)
Then the decision would be made

The Opposition:Councillor David Southward began:
The call in had 2 aims
1, to ask the panel to refer the decision back to cabinet
2, to demand they overturn the decision, which had far reaching consequences for Cumbria and the UK.

He said in 1996 following a meeting (he said pantomime) sponsored by Nirex it was implied that the Govt had learned not to impose a dump on the county without it having a say and so had developed a white paper which led to the MRWS partnership. The white paper was flawed, deeply flawed, but nevertheless it was there. And following 3 years of meetings and sub groups, the councillor found it bizarre that nobody knew about the MRWS process. The MRWS partnership was attended by national and international groups (most of whom were anti nuclear rather than anti dump). He claimed that 2/3 of residents of Copeland were willing to proceed to Stage 4, and that he knew of no coherent reason for cabinet to make the decision it did. He claimed that fundamentally the cabinet had responded to the wrong question- it was not about building a dump tomorrow. It was a decision about allowing geophysicists to examine possible sites- that’s all.He said that any number of provisos could have been put into the decision. Why wasn’t Tim Knowles’ proposal(excluding Allerdale and National Park) accepted? Were the councillors mesmerised by the well organised campaigners? Well, those campaigners kept quoting geology, so they should want to go ahead. He said that the cabinet summary was contrary to the findings of the MRWS partnership, UK policy and County policy. He claimed it  jeopardised the new nuclear build programme. He then pointed out that an unnamed prominent cabinet minister had told him that this wasn’t a Cumbrian issue, and that what happens outside Cumbria doesn’t concern the county cabinet. Cllr Southward said “It damn well does”. He said it will delay Sizewell etc, and when the lights go out in London they will go out in  Dearham and Upperby (reference to Cllr Martin and Young’s constituencies). He said that jobs at Sellafield are the economic powerhouse in Cumbria and affect house prices across west Cumbria and well into the Lake District.He said that a properly negotiated benefits package could revitalise west Cumbria but only if Cumbria keeps the GDF ball in play. Cumbria County Council Cabinet had nothing to lose by moving to the next process but they had a lot to gain.He finished by claiming that the call in offered 1 last chance to Cumbria County Cabinet to make the right decision.Next up Peter x:If Cumbria county council hadn’t the confidence to  [sorry it was a bit vague and I wasn’t sure what point he was making so stopped writing to try to clarify the point but it wasn’t forthcoming- ….something about education] it would give the wrong message…and we would lose the opportunity to influence government. He said he could find no credible reason for not doing a desk top study.Copeland’s Plan for the next 3 years states it will influence development of national projects in Copeland which include an underground dump.He said that Copeland is the most dependent county on government funding in the country, with the majority employed in public sector employment. He then stated that (although he was not there to witness it) it was concerning that a number of people who spoke at cabinet changed their view within minutes- saying one thing but then voting to the contrary- implying they had been influenced by Tim Knowles’ announcement that a no vote would make him reconsider his position.He said GDF was the optimum method of dealing with the waste and for the county to suggest improving surface storage at sellafield they were acting outside of County council policy.There was a need to scrutinise the basis on which the decision was taken and ask the members – why not do a desk top study? and refer it back to cabinet for consultation.

Wendy Skillicorn:
The arguments not to move to stage 4 are illogical. There is poverty in the area. She has never heard the members speak of the area without them mentioning child poverty.
In cabinet meeting on 30th January they asked ‘what is the nuclear industry doing  for the 32% of children living in child poverty?’ The members obviously do not understand the issues surrounding child poverty. It’s nothing to do with the nuclear industry. The borough lost Marchon and other industry and that is the cause.The best route out of poverty is education. And this is not encouraged. Whitehaven school, in close proximity to the uk’s biggest nuclear plant doesn’t offer a Physics A level. She then referred to Eddie Martins speech and  in particular his reference to ‘not prostituting the soul of Cumbria’. She was reminded of George Bernard Shaw who told a tale about a woman who was asked if she would sleep with someone for £1million and said yes- he then offered her 5 shillings and the woman replied ‘who do you think i am?’ GBH replied that he knew who she was, he was just haggling the price. [I have included this info because it made no sense and actually likened cumbria to a prostitute who should be haggled with- a point which was at odds with her argument. It was illogical- please see next point]Wendy said the cabinet’s decision ignored science, ignored copeland and was illogical.

The Cabinet:
Eddie Martin spoke and gave a detailed presentation. Stewart Young waived his right to speak so Cllr Martin could complete his presentation.
Eddie Martin: This issue is not Copeland specific, it affects the whole of Cumbria.My loyalty is to the people of Cumbria not to Westminster. The people of Cumbria elected me, not David Cameron.There was no single, one reason for rejecting the proposal. When added together, the cummulative effect of the decisions left no other choice.It is not the first time we have been considered as a site for a nuclear waste dump. He showed slides detailing a report from 1976- Flowers. Then one from 1986- Chapman and Mcgowan- which highlighted the best places in UK for such a facility would be Norfolk, Middlesborough or Kings Lynn. Then ’91-96: Nirex…which was a desk top study…and found that Cumbria was not worth exploring.He pointed out that he had visited Sweden, (which is different and sub surface) and that it was very impressive. That it was smaller than proposed UK dump- 1/2km site above ground and 2km below. He said he wished that we had such impressive facilities in Cumbria then perhaps the National Audit Office wouldn’t have found Sellafield so substandard. He said he had every faith that Sellafield will get it right…providing the investment is made.He said that the cabinet deciion was not flawed- it was within the policy framework: last week the council had eliminated High Level Waste from county responsibility. He pointed out that the 3 call in councillors had passed that very proposal last week. He suggested that perhaps they had not read it, but it was in the document they passed and there had been no comments raised about it.Then he addressed the fact that people hadn’t known about the proposal- that until the petitions etc went viral people were unaware of what was happening. He also addressed the accusations of intimidation- that there was no intimidation, despite what some of the papers and certain people might say. He then pointed out that he was not going to seek re-election on 2nd May (a decision made personally weeks ago) so he has nothing to gain from this politically, therefore arguments about party politics were absurd.He said that cabinet councillors had received literally 1000s of emails and letters/cards- they were testament to the strength and weight of public opinion. “You tell me that MRWS represent the people? Far from it” Next he looked at the query as to why Tim Knowles’ option was not accepted:-2 options had already been voted out. Allerdale had already been excluded. They were left with Copeland, He showed a map of Copeland. 70% Copeland is National Park- eliminate that and other designated areas and you are left with areas on the coast such as Seascale, Whitehaven and a smaller area around Millom. If you remove the areas of Settlement- Millom, Egremont, Whitehaven, Cleator Moor (unless you are threatening to dig there? No? So they are excluded) you are left with even less of Copeland. Copeland’s local plan (until 2016) protects designated wildlife sites against development- both those of local importance and those of county importance. His slide showed a list of all those sites in Copeland. So by the time you’ve taken all of those out of the search, there is nothing left of Copeland. He made a supposition that we had moved to stage 4 and an area of Copeland now looked like it might be appropriate to develop. Having done a further 2 years of work at stage 4 and spent extra money- why would the government let us withdraw. He pointed out (as he had in cabinet) that the right to withdraw was not enshrined in statute. External lawyers have pointed out that we could have a ‘legitimate expectation’ to be able to withdraw, but no statutory right to do so. The White paper says “we are minded” “providing parliamentary time can be acheived” to make it law, but they haven’t done so far. They won’t definitely do it, and only if they can find the time to define the statutory right to withdraw. He pointed out legislation such as terrorism bill/dangerous dogs act that were passed in weeks/couple of months. The Government has had 5 months to do this if they wanted, but they haven’t. They could have tacked it onto the energy bill which is going through now- but they didn’t.The further down the route we get, the more difficult it is to get off because the government will have spent more money. Despite assertions by government, we did not have the right to withdraw at later stage.He discussed a Sovereign wealth fund (as discussed at cabinet meeting- pointed out he didn’t know if they’d discussed that in Copeland, but had definitely discussed this at cabinet): if you want us to host your nuclear waste for perpetuity, there will be a price to pay. But no price has been forthcoming. There were No community benefits. £1/2million is crumbs. That is all we have been offered- for ‘lake district branding’. Why would the government pay compensation if there was no damage? By offering the 1/2million the government were admitting damage would be caused.In Norway/Shetland the oil industry provides a sovereign wealth fund and have done well from it. Why hasn’t Cumbria done well out of the Nuclear industry? The 10,000 jobs are good- but what about the rest of Cumbria?There is no agreement to establish a sovereign wealth fund for the benefit of cumbria and west cumbria- and without that, the next government could come remove any funding it deemed to costly. We have to find a solution to nuclear waste for the benfit of the nation, forever. They say moving it is too difficult/ If so, how are they moving it IN? If they can move it in, they can move it out.He discussed transport infrastructure in cumbria and how the county have pleaded with government to make parts of A595 and A66 dual carriageways but have had nothing. He talked about a speech he gave at Whitehaven school about  the county’s aspirations for their future. He said it needs rebuilding immediately and that he has applied for partnership building for schools etc, walked the corridors in parliament requesting this and written letters to be found on county council website- but nothing.He said we must diversify- and that he was calling on the nuclear industry to help us diversify. Sellafield is one of the richest parts of cumbria: safety, safety safety.His next slide showed quotes from various nuclear industry professionals- NDA, CORWM, MRWS, NIREX, univeristies of Glasgow Edinburgh etc pointing out unsuitability of Cumbria. He said that no one from the DECC or NDA has ever come forward to dispute the claims by Dearlove etc. He looked at procedural failures by MRWS partnership: no Strategic Environmental Assessment was ever done. The white paper demanded wide consultation across the county- this was not done.CALC- anything other than a no was counted as a yes.  It wasn’t a yes. He looked at willing community angle- 54/88 parish councils said no. 41 in Allerdale. 13 in Copeland. He showed a map of county with parishes saying no in red- majority was red.Our decision was not flawed- we went to extraordinary lengths  to investigate this. He looked at findings of Nirex which stated the impact a GDF would have on house prices and the lake district- and also said there may be a choice for a site in UK but not in Cumbria.He summarised with a list of 11 reasons why the cabinet had voted for withdrawal- each of which, he said, were compelling and convincing. Any one could have stopped the process but put together the weight of evidence was overwhelming: Cumbria is not the place. He countered arguments that the decision had damaged relationship with governmant etc by pointing out that Ed Davey MP of DECC had stated publicly that these decisions do not undermine the development of new build nuclear power stations.He said he is not anti nuclear. he wants nuclear, and because of it West Cumbria should be the most affluent area in the country. It isn’t.

The scrutiny panel were then given the opportunity to scrutinise,They started by scrutinising the resons for the call in. (I do not know which panel members said what)Panel- reason 2 doesn’t say ‘in Cumbria’- if other sites outside of cumbria can still be considered then this is not correct.David Southward- it’s meant to say in Cumbria Panel- reason 4 refers to copeland. Do you want us to consider this just for copeland or for the county as a whole? David Southward- whichever you choose really.
Panel- re premature abandonment of MRWS/flies in the face reason: you all signed up to a memorandum of understanding that this would need 3 green lights. Did Copeland sign up to that document?David Southward- didn’t answer question- something about policy of local government and this not being about GDF but about being able to stay in the nuclear game by allowing 3-5 years study by geologists- and by opting out we’ve lost that.Panel-This is meant to be based on fact or evidence, have you got that to hand? Copeland Cllr- No of course not. you can’t say how things will develop in future. Panel- the 3 call in councillors have raised an additional issue that the cabinet was unduly influenced by the proposed resignation of the leader – are they adding that to the list? Do they have evidence?Copeland Councillor- No. I was trying to ‘wind-up’ the meeting and add some spice into it.Stewart Young- I am completely puzzled by this. I have seen it said  that one particular cabinet member said one thing but voted for the other. Who?Copeland Councillor- I could say, but I won’tStewart Young- I think you may be confusing Gary and Oliver. I listened to the whole thing and I didn’t hear anyone do that. There are extensive minutes. And the whole thing was recorded- I believe there are transcripts.Panel- shouldn’t broaden the field to this issue- we should stick to the 6 reasons.Copeland Councillor- I’m not attempting to defam anybody. I don’t have a transcriptPanel- I’d like to ask David about confidence to withdraw. How much political clout do you think Cumbria has to withdraw? How confident are you that the government won’t decide  in the wider national interest to override that? David Southward-  based on the  previous secretary of state’s actions I think it’s sufficient. We could have put in provisos such as ” we will agree to west cumbria but if we don’t have right of withdrawal and sovereign wealth fund by June 2014 we’ll withdraw” Willie Whelan- That you trust a government- ‘any’ government- to do that is beyond me.He made reference to  Eddie Martin’s road/hard to get off analogy. The he raised concerns at the attempt to ‘spice things up’.I never believe never is the final word….so council is not eliminating opportunity. He makes reference to poverty and the necessity to deal with it (re new jobs/future).My heart says I’m with you, but my brain and common sense says we cannot take the risk.David Southward-It does come down to trust. He made further reference to the possibility of moving forward to stage 4 for 3-5 years and then possibly withdrawing after that with provisos. What can be safer than that?Who knows what the government wil do next. We have emasculated ourselves as a council be withdrawing from the process.Panel- re reason ‘flies in the face’: the council said it would withdraw at a particular stage as agreed, how does that fly in the face?David Southward- Unlike Stewart Young, willie whelan and other sceptics of government….Why couldn’t it be put in a s aproviso. You have spoiled the relationship between Carlisle and Westminster[there was a question re copeland here/or reference to it, but my notes don’t make sense- sorry! relates to the dump being in the local plan]Stewart Young- There is a new local plan. It’s now under consultation. Following the cabinet decision it is now removed from the document.Eddie Martin:Why did Copeland sign up to the process? The original plan was for 3-4 years at stage 4 but they changed it to 18 months. There is a problem with that.I genuinely believe that the ministers didn’t have the support of the treasury or of the government cabinet to enable them to promise us more. If they had, it might have been different. As I have said before, if  we go down the stage 4 route there is an enormous degree of uncertainty- are they going to dig here? Where will it be? and there is  no right of withdrawal- that is unacceptable. Withdrawing from GDF is right for Cumbria. But we are not withdrawing from the nuclear industry.We demand much more from the nuclear industry. Dounreay and Hrwell send us their waste. We are not a dumping ground for the whole of the Uk. If we are taking this, what are we getting? what has the nuclear industry given west cumbria?Wendy Skillicorn- wagesEddie Martin- I happen to know lots live and spend their money in Carlisle and Eden.Wendy Skillicorn- It’s still Cumbria.Eddie Martin- You talk about our relationship with government. What relationship with government? We don’t have one. I go down to westminster, I write to government. Not once have we had a positive response. Not one.David Southward-you said a lot about the history of GDFs and it was very intersting but sub-surface is not CCCs remit- this was just about investigating possible sites. And you say you have no reltaionship with government- this hasn’t ‘enhanced’ the relationship.You seem to deny the fact this county was a major player in the MRWS process. It wasn’t a lot of fun dragging ourselves round parish halls, but we did it to stay in the game.The right of withdrawal and community benefit packages could have improved conditions. You steered us away from that.Knocking this on the head.Where do you think the waste’s at now? Sellafield! They’ll do their best to look after it- they’re not about to go throwing it round the streets!I think you’ve damaged our relationship with Whitehall. You quote Haszeldene and Smythe. There are more elementary people who say it has the potential to go ahead. You have denied us that opportunitySumming upChair:Thanks – you are obviously very passionate.There are 6 items. Is there anything in there that would qualify going back to cabinet for a discussion? We’ve got to prove to ourselves that the arguments are solid.Willie Whelan- I’ve listened to the opposition, but it seems the cabinet had Hobsons Choice.I support the idea. They’ve not done anything wrong They looked at the evidence  and chosen to withdraw. I support and believe the cabinet decision.Chair: Are there any other points?(There were none)Chair: Shall we make that a motion?Panel member- Yes Panel member – I’ll 2nd Chair- can we have a show of hands? Yes?(Vote took place- lots of hands in the air)Chair- No?(No hands in air)Chair – were there any abstentions?(There weren’t)
Motion carried unanimously-cabinet decision upheld.

Britain’s Plutonium Mountain – BBC File on 4

The world’s largest Plutonium Mountain is at Sellafield.

Plutonium was not an accidental byproduct of the nuclear industry but deliberately extracted as a bomb making material. Despite there already being 112 tonnes of Plutonium at Sellafield, 4 – 6 tonnes more every year is extracted from used nuclear fuel i.e. radioactive waste by reprocessing. Every day the stockpile of plutonium is added to by reprocessing despite there being no use for the deadly material and following Fukushima, no chance that foreign owners would want their plutonium back in the form of MOX fuel.

Reprocessing has been banned in every country apart from France and Britain.

NO MORE! Stop adding to the plutonium stockpile and end reprocessing now!

Make Cumbria (and Cumbria’s Neighbours) Safe!

No More Mess!
No More Mess!

Please sign and share

Radiation Free Lakeland fully support Councillor John McCreesh’s call to “Make Cumbria Safe.” We urge others to do the same, all our futures depend on the wastes at the Sellafield site being contained into eternity, rather than dispersed to landfill, geological dump, scrap metal, rivers, air and sea.

Cllr John McCreesh has started a 38 degrees campaign, we urge everybody including Sellafield workers to support this call for huge investment of time, expertise and money.

The full text of the Petition:


Campaign created by John McCreesh

Dear Minister, please listen to the NAO, and commit to eliminating the ‘intolerable risk’ posed today by hazardous waste stored in run-down buildings at the Sellafield nuclear plant.
Why is this important?

The BBC reported last November: “An ‘intolerable risk’ is being posed by hazardous waste stored in run-down buildings at Sellafield nuclear plant, a watchdog has found.”

The report by the National Audit Office (NAO) stated: “Some of the older facilities at Sellafield containing highly hazardous radioactive waste have deteriorated so much that their contents pose significant risks to people and the environment.”

This waste has already been created, and it has to be kept safe until a proper solution is in place for dealing with it. West Cumbria urgently needs government investment to enable it to safeguard this material on behalf of us all.

What’s more, the problem is growing – there’s 44 tonnes more waste currently being moved down from Dounreay, with another 30 tonnes in the pipeline.

The Government must immediately commit the investment to make Sellafield safe. This is one item of expenditure that simply must not be cut back. The Government must also order the NDA to stop shipping waste into Sellafield, until the facilities are given a clean bill of health by the NAO.

Please sign and share

No means NO!!

A unanimous vote of confidence in the Cabinet decision

Despite the best efforts of a smear campaign which originated from Sellafields’s press officer and is directed at opponents of the nuclear dump…

the Economy and Environment Group have unanimously voted to uphold the Cabinet’s reasoned and logical No to going any further along the geological dump plan.

A comment from today …
Eddie Martin’s argument was brilliant and deserved the applause from the public.

Reply to BBC Complaints Department

The BBC have asked for more information regarding our complaint about the ongoing smear campaign against anti-nuclear campaigners in Cumbria.

Dear BBC Complaints

The complaint regards the repeating of defamatory claims that anti nuclear
campaigners ‘threatened and intimidated” councillors in Cumbria.
online here:
and also aired on the BBC TV news

This is a deliberate smear campaign based on a private email. The email
was in fact sent as a private message by an anti-dump campaigner to other
anti-dump campaigners who are by their own admission ….
“not anti-nuclear.”
The email was published without consent by a Sellafield PR team employee here:

The BBC and other media have dutifully reported this smear campaign and
expanded it without finding out the truth or even interviewing those being

Anti-nuclear campaigners are ordinary Cumbrians who do not have the
wherewithal to fund lawyers. Anti nuclear campaigners have unfairly
borne the brunt of this nasty smear campaign and we would like a full
apology and retraction from the BBC.

What Part of NO Don’t You Understand?

What Part of
Don’t You Understand?

The decision by Cabinet has been “called in” by 3 Copeland councillors. That means that the Economy & Environment Group will ‘scrutinise’ the Cabinet’s decision and either agree with it or ask that the Cabinet take a revote. It has been suggested that Copeland was always expected to call in the decision if the Cabinet voted no.

The meeting is on 19th Feb in Carlisle Courts (where the Cabinet meeting was) , Committee Rm 2 at 2pm. The meeting is in public but there is no public participation. We will meet outside at 12.30 – the councillors will be going in for a pre meeting meeting at 1.30.

19 FEB As many people there as possible please! “We said NO!” … the Cabinet said NO
MEET CARLISLE COURTS 12.30 (or 1ish – meeting starts at 2) COUNCILLORS WILL GO IN AT 1.30

Letters can be sent – even a one line urging the Economy and Environment
Group to uphold the Cabinet’s decision

Letter sent to all Economy and Environment Group re ‘call in’ from RaFL

Dear Councillor ..

On 19th Feb you will be looking at the ‘call in’ of the Cabinet’s decision
not to proceed to Stage 4 of the MRWS process.

We hope that your scrutiny of the Cabinet’s decision will not be
influenced by the smear campaign against anti- nuclear campaigners.

The actions of anti-nuclear and anti-dump campaigners has been exemplary,
especially given the context of the pressure put on Cumbria by the MRWS
process and what appears to be continuing blatant predetermination of
central Government regarding siting a geological dump in Cumbria.

We have written to Jamie Reed MP, Baroness Verma and Lord Jenkins asking
for an apology for the defamation of anti-nuclear campaigners ie ordinary
Cumbrians (letter below).

With regard to the call in of the Cabinet decision we would like to rebut
the reasons cited by Councillor Southward and urge you to withhold the
Cabinet’s decision.

1. “Cabinet gave no coherent reason for the decision”. We disagree, the
Cabinet gave extremely detailed rational and coherent reasons for refusing
to go to Stage 4.

2. “The decision forgoes the opportunity to identify suitable sites
indefinitely”. This statement indicates the nuclear bias of the ‘call
in’ councilors. A geological dump is not an opportunity, compensation
will not outweigh the blight as was pointed out by the Nirex inspector.
The “most promising” site in Cumbria from the Solway Firth to Morecambe
Bay was Longlands Farm, which was ruled out as being too complex. (see
attached map of the investigation area of Nirex homing in on the “most
promising site”)

3. “The premature abandonment of the MRWS process flies in the face of
established UK government and Cumbria County Council policies”
Rather than being “prematurely abandoned” the MRWS process was effectively
forced on an area which should never have been back in the frame for
geological dumping. Cumbria County Council’s policy on radioactive waste
was reiterated last May when Endecom wanted to dump low level waste at
Keekle Head. A report from Paul Feehily, the council’s assistant director
of planning and sustainability said: “The dispersal and proliferation of
ANY type of radioactive waste management facilities away from established
nuclear sites creates a negative image of Cumbria and west Cumbria in
particular. This could deter investment from the non-nuclear sector and
damage prospects for much needed economic diversification, growth and
regeneration.” Timothy Knowles said of Keekle “They want to bury even more
radioactive waste in the wrong place , this is not a good idea”
while Jamie Reed said “I understand the need for additional disposal
facilities but I don’t believe these should be undertaken away from the
existing areas – it makes no sense to do so”.

4. “The decision discounts the clear majority view of Copeland residents
who want the MRWS process to proceed to Stage 4”
The Ipsos Mori poll is not even representative of people who took the
poll, never mind Copeland or Cumbria. Many Copeland residents have
contacted RaFL saying that they would not have said yes had they known
that there was any question the dump could be unsafe. Of the Parishes,
88 Allerdale/Copeland parishes:
8 yes
45 no
2 undecided
33 no formal response
There have also been petitions signed with tens of thousands of signatures.
That is an overwhelming majority – but of people who want the process

5. “The decision jeopardises relations between the UK government and CCC,
particularly with regard to nuclear new build”
Why? If Copeland genuinely wants to lobby for new nuclear build (to make
even more dangerous wastes) that should be on new build’s own merit rather
than being held to ransom by government to host the geological dump.

6. “The decision stultifies economic development in Copeland for a
Again Why? Why aren’t Copeland councilors lobbying for diversification of
the economy away from the toxic supermarket effect of nuclear to a healthy
diversity of industries? As councillor for St Bees and Egremeont, David
Southward will know first hand the effects of the nuclear industry on the
tourist economy. St Bees Parish Council expressed “strong concern” that
the sight of radioactive particles being picked up at the request of the
Environment Agency by a specialist machine and operators “ would have an
adverse impact on tourism.” The solution? The Environment Agency agreed
that monitoring for contamination on the beaches should avoid peak periods
such as during bank holidays. Despite this, the latest report shows a
record number of radioactive hotspots have been found at St Bees and other
beaches. Cumbrians feel that “brand protection” is at the expense of our
health and safety. A healthy population is a prerequisite of a healthy

Yours sincerely,

Marianne Birkby
on behalf of Radiation Free Lakeland

Record Number of Radioactive Particles

Parishes Say NO

Opposition to dispersal of radioactive waste around Cumbria
Councillor Tim Knowles said of Keekle : “They want to bury even more
radioactive waste in the wrong place… this is not a good idea.”

Jamie Reed

Letter to Secretary of State: No Radioactive Landfill – Keekle Head

The Keekle Head Site

Press Notice Radiation Free Lakeland

Following an appeal by the company wanting to dump low level waste at
Keekle Head, Radiation Free Lakeland have written to the Secretary of State
urging Cumbria County Council’s refusal for Keekle Head low level nuclear
dump is upheld.

Jamie Reed MP’s rational objection to a low level nuclear dump at Keekle
Head makes his maneuverings to continue steps towards geological dumping
of high level wastes look even more irrational.

—————————- Original Message —————————-
Subject: Keekle Head. Appeal Reference: APP/H0900/A/12/2187327/NWF
From: Marianne Birkby
Date: Tue, February 12, 2013 3:35 pm

Dear Secretary of State,

Endecom has appealed to the Secretary of State against
the decision of Cumbria County Council to refuse planning permission for a
‘Waste management facility for the disposal of low and very low level
radioactive waste including site restoration and ancillary development’ at
Keekle Head. Appeal Reference: APP/H0900/A/12/2187327/NWF

Radiation Free Lakeland would like to reiterate our previous objections to
Endecom’s plan for a radioactive waste dump at Keekle Head (attached).

We ask you to respect the strong objections of Jamie Reed MP for Copeland:
“I understand the need for additional disposal facilities but I don’t
believe these should be undertaken away from the existing areas – it makes
no sense to do so”

Cumbria County Council agreed and on the 8th May 2012 voted to oppose
Endecom’s plan to take
lucrative government contracts and turn Keekle Head into a low level
radioactive dump.

The reason Endecom gave for not siting a low level dump at or near
Sellafield was that “large areas of contaminated land on the site would
have to be excavated to develop a Facility.”

Last week the courts found Sellafield guilty of dumping low and
intermediate level radioactive nuclear waste at Lillyhall landfill. The
crux of the matter is that radioactive waste should not be leaving the
Sellafield site and opening up new pathways for contamination.

It is becoming clear that “decommissioning” means dispersal to the wider
community. Sellafield is being “cleaned up” but at a cost to the
community that unlike the Sellafield workforce is not paid danger money or
suited and booted or provided with a Compensation Scheme for Radiation
Linked Diseases.

We urge you to uphold Cumbria County Council’s refusal.

yours sincerely,

Marianne Birkby
on behalf of Radiation Free Lakeland

CCC Briefing Note 2 -Nuclear Landfill

RAdiation Free Lakeland Keekle Head 8th May presentation

Keekle Head 19th May 2011 RAdiation Free Lakeland

Baroness Verma asked to Apologise for Defamation of Anti-Nuclear Campaigners

Anti Nuclear Campaigners 30th January in Carlisle
Anti Nuclear Campaigners 30th January in Carlisle

Dear Lady Verma,

On February 5th Radiation Free Lakeland sent an email to Jamie Reed MP outlining concern about Copeland and Allerdale’s wish to revisit the geological dumping of nuclear wastes in Cumbria despite the conclusion of the MRWS process.

Since then it has become apparent that to achieve this goal of continued steps towards geological ‘disposal’ Jamie Reed MP is waging a smear campaign against anti nuclear campaigners in Cumbria. We have written to Jamie Reed MP to to ask for either a full apology for the slanderous and constantly repeated accusations that anti nuclear campaigners used “threats and intimidation”
or hard evidence that this was the case.

The content of the email used as the basis of “threats and intimidation” looks like very small beer indeed for an internal message between friends which was never intended for public consumption.

The email appears to be from an anti-dump in the Lakes campaigner to other like-minded people and rightly points out that councillors should be notified that they will be called to account for their decision. The email was within an anti-dump list and not within the lists of “anti-nuclear
campaigners” who are campaigning to stop not only the dump but also the continued production of high-level nuclear waste.

Lord Jenkin and youself have eagerly taken up Jamie Reed’s cue and said ‘intimidation by anti- nuclear campaigners may be looked at by police’ This is an appalling and unfounded smear campaign.
Cumbrian anti-nuclear campaigners are volunteers from all walks of life, from farmers, hoteliers, scientists, academics and artists.

Since when did it become acceptable for an MP who has received a constituent’s correspondence via a third party to then leak that private correspondence?

Radiation Free Lakeland are under no illusion that if, like Jamie Reed, we had obtained via a third party sight of private correspondence from him to pro-dump colleagues and then published that correspondence, we would now be facing legal action.

The actions of anti-nuclear and anti-dump campaigners have been exemplary, especially given the context of the almost obscene pressure put on Cumbria by the MRWS process and what appears to be blatant predetermination of central Government regarding siting a geological dump in Cumbria.

On the basis of a rather innocuous leaked private email from an anti –dump campaigner to fellow anti-dump campaigners, repeated accusations of “threat and intimidation” have been levelled at anti-nuclear campaigners in Cumbria. We would like an apology.

Yours sincerely,

Marianne Birkby
On behalf of Radiation Free Lakeland

Letters have been sent to the BBC, Jamie Reed and Lord Jenkin asking for an apology for the repeated and published defamation of anti-nuclear campaigners i.e. ordinary Cumbrians

Guest Blog – Steamboat Andy on the GDF, and Radioactive Waste Dumped in Landfill

We Won't be Dumped On! Radioactive Waste in Landfill
We Won’t be Dumped On! Radioactive Waste in Landfill

Times and Star Friday 8th Feb

I have only recently become aware of this proposed GDF so was out there
last week with the rest of the campaigners with my placard as another
cumbrian voice to say NO WAY TO A DUMP IN UNSUITABLE GROUND !

I have been reading the news and comments in the local papers and on the
Guardian web site and last monday I read that sellafield were going to be
up in court on 7 feb 2013 on charges of the illegal dumping of radioactive
waste in a landfill site at lillyhall, workington in 2010.

This news got my back right up! On one hand we are being told to trust the
nuclear experts, the ones that know how to safely handle radioactive waste
( for 1,000,000 years ) but on the other hand the real reality is very
different, their so-called safety standards have allowed dangerous waste to
end up in a landfill ! I decided to go to the courts with my banner as I
feel this kind of carry on should not go unnoticed.

I also sat in the public gallery in the court and listened with intent to
the proceedings where I learned that the five bags of waste checked by the
safety monitor machines, passed the test as zero rated and therefore as
classed as exempt waste was sent for disposal to the local landfill site
(one bag never left the sellafield site, but four did ) Three of the bags
were infact low level waste, not to be confused with the newly classified
“exempt “waste ( they have moved the goal posts regarding the level of
radioactivity so the drigg site does not fill up so fast ) and should have
gone to the drigg waste site which is an armed guarded site against
unauthorized entry by the public and rightly so, but one bag had high
enough emissions of radioactivity to be classed as intermediate level
radioactive waste ! and should never have left site.

So three bags of low level and one bag of intermediate level radioactive
waste were transported unknowingly by the carrier and handled unknowingly
by the landfill workers and dumped above ground where one bag split open
(not sure which one ). It was pointed out in court that the level of
radioactivity was enough to be cancer causing but as usual sellafield said
it was highly unlikely to be a danger to the public or the workers.
sellafield only realised this accident had occured a week later due to an
Operator training exercise where a bag of waste with a known amount of
radioactivity was passed through the monitors and came out of the other
side reading zero ! The recently installed new monitors had been
calibrated wrong by themselves. Its a good thing they keep records of all
the waste so they could track this stuff down, otherwise it would be there
emitting dangerous invisible death rays for a long time to come,possibly
under a new build factory or a recreation area in the future ?
Its odd that they could have checked the output of the newly installed
monitors against their records of what was passing through but did not,
solely relying on the results of the machines even though they knew they had
ordered the wrong machines in the first place and had to re-calibrate them
by themselves to be fit for purpose !

When the magistrate gave his verdict to sellafield who had pleaded guilty
to the charges of the illegal dumping of radioactive waste he said he had
taken into account that they had said they were sorry and that it would not
happen again, but he said it should not have happened in the first place so
recommended this case to be heard in the crown court. And rightly so. it
will take place at the courts in carlisle on 8 march 2013 and I will be
there with my banner saying ” we will not be dumped on” I as I am a very
concerned cumbrian regarding this (radioactive) matter. Anyone else willing
to stand up and be counted, I’ll see you there !

I fully expected this verdict to be front page news but our local CN run
news papers played it down with hardly any coverage at all,only a tiny bit
in the times and star with no mention of the words “intermediate level
waste” or the fact that sellafield have pleaded guilty & not one mention of
it in the cumberland news at all, and as small a coverage on the local TV
news as they could get away with, after the football news ! And somehow the
Times and star just happened to contain a massive supplement paper of
sellafield backed “see how good we are crack” entitled Britain’s Energy
Coast cumbria,acting locally,thinking globally
! funded by NDA, NMP, and
sellafield Ltd ! I notice also that they have trade marked this statement !
So as a local cumbrian lad I got my eyes opened this day to some home

I tell ya marra its unbelievable, what is more important in the bigger
picture ? Jobs or safety and remember we are talking thousands of years of
safety for hundreds of generations to come…….