Below is a timely article from blogger and publisher June….
FRIDAY, 1 JANUARY 2016
“Why don’t you build on flood plains?… Because they flood. What don’t you put there?… A nuclear power plant.
The flooding which is affecting so many countries so badly has come to Britain and one of the worst affected parts of Britain is Cumbria, which encompasses the Lake District, a mountainous and beautiful part of England.
Written about by the Lakeland poets, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and Robert Southey, the district was also loved by Beatrice Potter, the children’s author and illustrator, who also farmed Herdwick sheep there and is credited with preserving much of the land which is now the Lake District National Park. According to Wikipedia, “She supported the efforts of the National Trust to preserve not just the places of extraordinary beauty but also those heads of valleys and low grazing lands that would be irreparably ruined by development.”
Skip to 2015 and I have been re-reading the petition and pdf report in Radiation Free Lakeland by Marianne Birkby about the proposed nuclear plant, Moorside, in Cumbria. This has been billed by the nuclear industry as the largest new nuclear development in Europe. There would be up to three nuclear reactors on what is currently farmland, woodland, hedgerows, marsh and shore in an area called Greenmoorside, which stretches from Sellafield to the villages of Calder Bridge, Braystones, Beckermet and down to the Irish sea.
This kind of countryside can hold substantial amount of water in the soil…Worms make straight tunnels up to the surface which allow rain water to penetrate to the deeper levels. Certain types of soil can even hold up to twenty times their weight in water! http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/a0100e/a0100e08.htm and https://www.fginsight.com/news/aiming-to-increase-soil-organic-matter-content-by-20-per-cent-in-20-years-8371 This assumes, however, that they have not been built on!
As a matter of some importance, the area planned for the Moorside development includes the floodplain for the River Ehen.
Now, according to the UK government’s own live flood warnings, on December 29th the River Ehen was, at times, above the level at which flooding can occur at Braystones; on December 26th at Egremont; and on December 26th, 27th and 30th at Bridge Bleach Green Weir, at the west end of Ennerdale Water. There may have been more occasions, but these are the ones I have in my screenshots.
I understand from the 2014 Radiation Free Lakeland report, that the plant site for each of the planned reactors would require 9.6 acres apiece and huge cooling towers perhaps another 15 acres. Maybe there would be giant cooling tunnels and heat exchange out at sea as well. How much concrete and steel and pipes would that take… and where would the flood water go, as well as the water in the soil which had been displaced by the buildings and roads and infrastructure?
The River Ehen is a site of special scientific interest, as well as being very beautiful. The area is currently rich in its wildlife, and contains increasingly threatened species. It was supposed to have been left as a buffer zone around Sellafield, which apparently already has the largest amount of radioactivity on the planet.
Will the government listen to reason? Well you have to understand what reason is, if you are listening to it. According to The Guardian, Greenpeace has discovered that almost half of the areas fast tracked for new housing development by George Osborne, are on floodplains. http://www.theguardian.com/housing-network/2015/dec/11/cumbria-george-osborne-build-homes-floods
If you live in the UK and you have time to sign the petition, as well as the one about flooding at Drigg, it would be greatly appreciated. Sadly these aren’t open to anyone outside the U.K. But if you have got this far, thank you for reading the post and my very best wishes for the new year, which we saw in just over an hour ago to the hum of a helicopter overhead as the celebrations took place in London.”