Given that feelings are running very high on both sides of the nuclear argument it is incredible that the plans for decommissioning, geological dumping and nuclear new build have not got top billing in the EU elections. Not only has nuclear not got top billing but we are lucky if it gets a mention.
Bearing that in mind and the fact that the nuclear agenda in the UK is being driven by the European Commission, Radiation Free Lakeland has written to EU candidates, we will post the answers when we receive them.
As a candidate for the EU elections we would be very grateful if you could
answer these 3 questions….
In Europe, the European Commission Directive 2011/70 Euratom states: “Deep
geological disposal represents the safest and most sustainable option as
the end point of the management of high level waste and spent fuel
considered as waste.” This optimistic statement is not backed up by
science or evidence in the real world with the ONLY operational geological
dump leaking like a sieve in New Mexico. Under the Directive Member States
have to submit a comprehensive waste management plan by 2015. It is this
Directive that is seeing Cumbrians frogmarched along “steps towards
geological disposal” despite the geology and the likelihood that technical
problems with deep geological disposal will never ensure safe containment.
Q1 Will you work to ensure that the Geological Disposal Directive 2011/70
is overturned and that safety is put before finance and expediency?
Decommissioning – Dispersal to the Environment
The European Commission states that : “Large volumes of material are
produced during decommissioning and the environmental and financial costs
of disposal of this material as waste can be very significant.
Consequently, minimising waste is important in the management of these
projects”. In practice this means that in order to achieve “minimising
waste” the waste is reclassified as “exempt” and “High Volume Very Low
Level” this opens up the floodgates and has led to Sellafield dumping 3
bags of low level and one bag of intermediate level waste in Lillyhall
landfill. The private operators running the landfill HAVE NOT been
prosecuted. Sellafield has been prosecuted, the fine paid with public
money. As well as dumping radioactive rubble in landfill, decommissioned
metal wastes are melted down into scrap metal and sold onto the open
market in the only ‘metal recycling facility’ (MRF) in Europe, here in
Q2 Would you agree that Decommissioning should not mean dispersal of
radioactive wastes to the environment and will you explore the possibility
of a moratorium on the practice of Decommissioning?
Moorside -New Nuclear Build. This proposal for 3 nuclear reactors on a
vast area over 6km square area of beautiful land is adjacent to the
stockpile of nuclear waste and reprocessing plant at Sellafield. The
companies who designed and built Fukushima, Toshiba and Tepco have taken
no responsibility for that disaster but are in talks with the UK
government to build new reactors here in Cumbria and to “clean up”
Sellafield ( ie dispersal to the environment). The Irish National Trust
are taking the UK government to court over the decision to build new
nuclear plants that would further pollute the Irish Sea. Incredible then
that there should be a plan to build three reactors (burning uranium for
harder and longer with hotter wastes) right next to Europe’s most
dangerous nuclear wastes. Also incredible is the size – this would be
bigger than Sellafield’s sprawling 6km square site. Why? Is that to
shovel some of Sellafield’s “decommissioning” and reprocessing activity
onto fresh land?
Q3 Given that in the real world there are no “waste eating” nuclear
reactors (only industry PR pie in the sky Integral Fast Reactors ) and no
“away” for nuclear waste (apart from dispersal to the environment) will
you oppose Moorside?
We look forward to your reply,
on behalf of Radiation Free Lakeland
European Commission Directive 2011/70
New Mexico Waste Isolation Pilot Plant Leaking
European leaders are being misled over the safety of underground disposal
of highly dangerous nuclear waste which could poison groundwaters for
Moorside – New Build
The Site Plan