NuGen Told By ASA Not To Repeat Lie…But This Does Not Go Far Enough

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NuGen Told By the Advertising Standards Authority Not to Repeat Lie

Bigging Up Moorside…..

– But This Does Not Go Far Enough!

Letter sent today to Tim Farron MP

Dear Tim,

I would be very grateful if you could ask Secretary of State Amber Rudd
the following on Radiation Free Lakeland’s behalf.

NuGen Advertorial
In April the proposers of three AP1000 reactors on greenfields and
floodplain near Sellafield, put out an advertorial in all Cumbrian
newspapers. This double page advertorial stated that the proposed
Moorside nuclear power station would provide about “7% of the UK’s energy

Energy v Electricity
NuGen had printed the word ‘energy’ meaning ‘electricity’ The station
would actually be predicted to only supply less than 2% of future UK
energy demand (see below).

ASA Complaint
We wrote to the ASA pointing out that NuGen’s advertorial was out by a
factor of X 3.5 bigging up the importance of the scheme.
Following new law, making nuclear new build a Nationally Important
Infrastructure Project, the “test of public support” is the only thing
between Cumbria and new nuclear build. What that “ test of public
support” is to be has not been revealed but we suspect it will involve the
ongoing consultations.

The ASA reply of 7th August states: “Nugen have assured us that the ad has
been withdrawn and that they will not repeat the claim “NuGen’s Moorside
Project aims to provide approximately seven percent of the UK’s current
energy requirement” in their future advertising. We consider that this
will resolve the complaint without referring the matter to the ASA Council
and will consequently be closing our file.”

We do not consider this to have resolved the complaint in any way.

Does the Secretary of State agree that this was no mere one off run of the
mill advert? It was a double page advertorial in EVERY paper in Cumbria
promoting the most dangerous technology there is in order to facilitate
untried, untested reactors next to the most dangerous nuclear site there

Given the importance of this issue shouldn’t NuGen put an equally
prominent advert in every
newspaper in Cumbria apologizing for their mistake in bigging up the
importance of their proposed nuclear plant to the power of x 3.5 ?

The ASA give no indication as to whether they consider NuGen’s ‘mistake’
accidental or deliberate and we will be writing to them to urge them to
reconsider their decision.
We do not consider the ASA’s very mild response to be robust enough given
that the advertorial was part of the industry’s official consultation and
sanctioned by government.

It seems that a double page nuclear power advertorial sanctioned by
government and published in every Cumbria paper can lie about the energy
predicted and be allowed to get away without an equally prominent printed
apology for that deception in the press. What does that say for trust in
governance? How can the public have any confidence at all in the honest
integrity of either NuGen’s or government’s nuclear new build ambitions?

Best wishes

Marianne Birkby
On behalf of
Radiation Free Lakeland
PS this is by no means the only instance of bigging up nuclear in the
public domain but it is an important one.

CC Advertising Standards Authority

More Below..

4 thoughts on “NuGen Told By ASA Not To Repeat Lie…But This Does Not Go Far Enough

  1. Letter sent to the Advertising Standards Agency today….

    Dear Lucy,

    Ref: A15-301409/302947/LC/ts

    NuGeneration Ltd

    Thank you for your letter

    Your letter says that the Advertising Standards Authority believes that
    telling NuGen not to repeat their lie bigging up the plan for new nuclear
    reactors next to Sellafield is a proportionate response.

    Given that the advertorials were not run of the mill adverts but part of
    an industry consultation sanctioned by government then, I believe, that at
    the very least NuGen should be required to print equally prominent
    apologies in the same press.

    In the ASA’s view was NuGen’s mistake in bigging up proposed nuclear power
    generation x3.5 deliberate or accidental? Even if accidental do you think
    that NuGen will have benefitted from bigging up the importance of the
    Moorside new nuclear build project? Or do ASA think that such a little
    benefit has been gained that there is no need for a printed apology in the
    same press as which the advert appeared?

    How can the public have trust in a consultation for new nuclear build that
    is allowed to get away with dropping a big lie into a double page
    advertorial in every paper in Cumbria without any equally prominent
    printed apology correcting the ‘mistake.’?

    To add insult to injury full details of the complaint are not even to be
    printed on the ASA website. This is despite the amount of complaints
    received and the implications of effectively letting multinationals,
    Toshiba and Engie (NuGen) hoping to build the “biggest nuclear development
    in Europe” get away with lying about their scheme during a consultation.

    Who do we complain to about the Advertising Standards Authority’s decision
    to let NuGen off the hook?

    yours sincerely,

    Marianne Birkby

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