The BBC’s ProNuclear Bias is Blatent

ProNuclear Bias BBC

The BBC is after all an arm of government – supposedly at arms length but how at arms length is it really? Certainly as far as the government’s nuclear agenda is concerned the BBC is keen to keep to the script at every opportunity. The bland announcement that Hinkley has been given the go ahead by government was not accompanied by any super dooper scary computer graphics showing where the uranium is going to come from, where it will be enriched (Preston, Lancashire or Capenhurst, Cheshire), or how the reactors will burn the uranium so hard that the waste will be much more dangerous, no graphics showing where the waste will be stored or where it will be buried. No question’s asked. No galvanising of public opinion to question this as anything other than a done deal. Altogether an easy ride for nuclear from the BBC to damp down any resistance and at all costs to keep the horses from being scared and bolting away from the nuclear stable. RESIST!

Here is a letter from Dr Paul Dorfman to the BBC objecting to the pronuclear bias in last Thursday’s Radio 4 Nuclear Waste: Inside Science programme.

Dear BBC

Your guest discussant on nuclear waste stated that a very great new-build nuclear in
the UK would only increase the volume of our rad-waste burden by 10%. Unfortunately
this statement is utterly disingenous, in that the key to nuclear waste is the
actual toxicity of the radiation – not the volume. The waste volume will indeed be
smaller, but the actual toxicity and heat of the waste will increase our waste
burden by 3-5 times. One of the reasons for this will be the use of essentially
experimental ‘high burn-up’ fuel.

Following the liberalisation of the EU energy market, it was realized that a
decrease in nuclear costs could be achieved if reactor power could be optimized by
using more uranium as reactor fuel and keeping the fuel rods in longer. This means
that generation III reactor ‘high burn-up’ spent fuel will be significantly more
radioactive than conventional spent fuel. Five years after discharge, each square
metre of spent fuel in the proposed EPR cooling ponds may generate up to 17 kW of
heat compared with 11 kW from more conventional spent fuel pool. The high density of
the AP1000 spent fuel racks implies that between 24 and 36 kW of heat may need to be
removed from each square metre. Safety could depend on the effective and continuous
removal of the significant thermal power of high burn-up spent fuel, potentially
requiring additional pumps, back-up electricity supplies and back-up water supplies:
all systems potentially vulnerable to mechanical failure or deliberate disruption.
It is also likely that densely packed high burn-up spent fuel may require additional
neutron absorbers, and greater radiation shielding during encapsulation and storage.

Dr Paul Dorfman
UCL Energy Institute
University College London
Central House
14 Upper Woburn Place

Founder, Nuclear Consulting Group (NCG)
Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust Nuclear Policy Research Fellow

Please add your opposition to BBC Bias on Nuclear Waste and Nuclear New Build

The program can be heard here:

None of the actual issues around the waste are explored and
there is no dissenting voice. The prog website gives a link to EDF.
It also gives a link for emails.

BBC radio 4 feedback -should receive
the same complaints, and then there is a chance that some “balance” can
be restored to the coverage..

Petition to Stop Hinkley…
We call upon David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Edward Davey, to stop the construction of Hinkley C Nuclear Power Station: Nuclear Power is dangerous and uneconomical. We can never predict damage to the reactor as a result of unstable weather conditions or seismic activity. The proposed Hinkley C site is on the Bristol Channel which experiences high tidal fluctuations. It is also within the vicinity of a fault line that had an earthquake 9 years ago. It could happen again.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s