Review of the year – Radiation Free Lakeland.
An observation…..while activist and NGO attention has been (deliberately?) ratcheted up and focussed on fracking the nuclear industry has been lining up its myriad ducks from the South of England to Wales to Cumbria with a view to poisoning our water, land, sea and our DNA.. People often say to me “Why bother, its too big to fight, Moorside is a done deal” but this is true only if we are so cowed and intimidated by the entrenched and violent (yes violent) nuclear industry that we let their evil ambitions be a done deal. RESIST! Here is to containing Sellafield and Stopping Moorside in order to ensure many many more New Years being seen in – here in our beautiful, vulnerable Cumbria. Thanks to All Nuclear Resisters Everywhere!!
Review of the Year
January 7th 2016 NEW YEARS EVE NUCLEAR WASTE SITE FLOOD ALERT VIRTUALLY UNREPORTED Main Stream Media did not report dangers of flooding to UK’s Drigg Nuclear Waste Site “The Ecologist highlights a UK Environment Agency alert about the River Irt which is adjacent to Drigg described as a nuclear waste repository. Basically however it’s simply a ‘nuclear landfill site’
February 6th 2016 RADIOACTIVE WASTE ON THE IRISH SEA BED RESUSPENDED BY NUGENS BOREHOLE DRILLING – NO DEBATE-NO VOTE-NO NOTHING Radiation Free Lakeland send letter of objection. NuGen’s 40 (or more) offshore “exploratory” boreholes would churn up the biggest nuclear dump in the world . The only chance the public gets to object is in what the Marine Management Organisation laughingly calls a “public consultation. In contrast the wind turbines off Walney were hugely debated by local councillors, one of the concerns being (quite rightly) the churning up of radioactive silts.
February 28th 2016 WYLFA CONSULTATION Radiation Free Lakeland object strongly to the plan for new nuclear in Wales and “We urge others to write opposing plans for new nuclear in Wales (or anywhere!). The “high burn” waste from new build would be many times hotter than from existing nuclear plants.”
March 11th REMEMBER FUKUSHIMA – STOP MOORSIDE DEMONSTRATION Many thanks to everyone who came along today to Remember Fukushima at Whitehaven. Especially members of Lancaster CND who travelled from Lancashire.
April 24th FOCUS ON PYLONS = PYLON THE PRESSURE FOR MOORSIDE? Many of you will have seen the article in the Guardian and other national papers on the “fury over Lake District Pylons” quite a few of us have commented on the Guardian website about it, and have written about the superficial focus on the pylons on the blog and in letters to the press time and again.
April 30th LOCK THE GATE ON DRIGG –The Drigg site owners, the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority pass day to day running of the site to multinational corporations involved in “decommissioning’ and those corporations largely monitor themselves. SO the same people responsible for producing the waste are also responsible for dumping it. The Environment Agency has told us it sees no conflict of interest in this…but we do! Studsvik, a swedish company who operate the only radioactive scrap metal plant in Europe here in Cumbria is one of the partners of the Drigg site. On 20th April Studsvik’s waste operations were taken over by EDF.
May 2nd COMEDIAN PAUL MERTON GOES WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD – DRIGG Is this the best expose in the last two decades of the UK’s “Low Level” Nuclear Dump ? Paul Merton fearlessly goes where Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth have not dared to tread for many a long year and shows the world the madness of nuclear…and all in a quaint little Lakeland coastal village called Drigg.
May 5th DRIGG DECISION DELAYED YET AGAIN WHILE CONCRETE IS POURED IN THE ‘VAULTS’ First we were told this would be in April, then May – now the decision has been put back once again. The next possible time it may be heard is June 23rd ….but we will not know for sure until 7 days ahead of the meeting by the Development Control and Regulation Committee of Cumbria County Council. The toothless Environment Agency have already given their blessing and the operators have already poured tonnes of concrete over coastal land precariously near to the Drigg dunes for more “vaults” despite planning approval having not been given.
May 9th 2016 “POPULATION MIXING” LETTER HAND DELIVERED TO DECC “The industry and government continue to deny any link between radioactive emissions and childhood leukemia, preferring to throw supposedly reassuring red herrings to the public in the form of “population mixing” as a viral agent causing increased leukaemia’s. Here the plan in Cumbria is to parachute in 4000 temporary workers to the Moorside site. The village in which the site is situated, Beckermet has a population of 1,619 (2011). The nursery and primary school would be 700m from the proposed development.”
May 20th 85% OF CUMBRIANS SAY NO TO MOORSIDE WHILE NUGEN PEDDLE THEIR FAIRYTALE IN BECKERMET North West Evening Mail Poll poll is far larger than the responses to the first NuGen CONsultation and we suspect far more representative of Cumbria.
May 31st KESWICK SAYS NO TO NEW NUCLEAR 20 MILES AWAY AS THE CROW FLIES Today in Keswick 90% of the people we spoke to were opposed to new nuclear build in Cumbria. This does not tally with what NuGen are saying which is that “Cumbria wants new nuclear build.” A recent poll in the Evening Mail indicated that 85% of those voting do not want new nuclear build in Cumbria. Tourists said they would think twice about coming to Cumbria if dangerous new nuclear reactors were built here.
June 9th CUMBRIA WILDLIFE TRUST TEAM UP WITH NUGEN FOR WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY The local press trumpets the headline “NuGen Lends a Hand for World Environment Day” the article goes on ….”Employees from NuGen, the company responsible for delivering Moorside, teamed up with representatives from Cumbria Wildlife Trust and The Forestry Commission. We have been informed that people living on the coast near the proposed Moorside site where “exploratory” borehole drilling is already stirring up decades of radioactive waste (no planning permissison necessary say NuGen) have been warned by Nuvia (who do radioactive sampling on the beaches) not to pick up polythene sheeting or plastic. No doubt Cumbria Wildlife Trust will not be fazed by this and will continue to promote childrens activities on the beach?
July 22nd MOORSIDE 2nd CONSULTATION The 2nd Moorside Consultation for the “biggest nuclear development in Europe” finishes on 30th July. ‘Too Big and Too Nasty to Fight‘ is the View of the Proposed Moorside Plan from so many good people like the Director of Cumbria Wildlife Trust who feel utterly defeated by the nuclear juggernaught coming our way. This is of course what the industry wants you to think. BUT WE CAN DEFEAT THEM, ALL IT TAKES IS YOU. Thousands of people have already joined the Resistance .
August 2nd DRIGG DECISION: ‘WE ARE CAUGHT IN A TRAP, NO WAY OUT, BECAUSE WE LOVE NUCLEAR WASTE TOO MUCH?’ On 15th July a small committee of Cumbrian Councillors in Kendal took the decision to stack nuclear waste ever higher in shipping containers on the shifting sands of the West Cumbrian coast at the quaint village of Drigg. No fuss, no fanfare, no comment, only one article in the local press which airbrushed out the opposition – its a wonder there is ANY opposition what with the deafening silence! That rather triumphant article appeared in the Whitehaven News and it should set ALL alarm bells ringing. The operators of the Drigg “Low Level” Nuclear Waste “repository” are gleefully reported saying: ” It is safe to dispose of LLW at the LLWR both now and centuries into the future.”
August 23rd FRAGILE HABITATS – LETTER IN THE GUARDIAN “George Monbiot is right: wholesale destruction of wildlife is obscene (The grouse shooters aim to kill, 16 August). Why no grousing, then, on the imminent destruction of the diverse habitats and endangered species, including many red list birds, on the west coast of Cumbria? Why no grouse about the collateral damage in obsessive pursuit of the “biggest nuclear development in Europe” at Moorside? The environmental destruction planned is on a scale the most bloodthirsty grouse hunter could only dream of.”
August 30th PYLONS: WHAT DECISION WOULD YOU LIKE THE NATIONAL GRID TO MAKE? 70% SAY NO TO MOORSIDE The Evening Mail’s Pylon Poll has the option (unlike the actual Consultations) to vote No to Moorside…the poll is now standing at 70% saying No to Moorside …this is absolutely remarkable and very heartening given that the Friends of the Lake District and other groups along with the media are concentrating campaign efforts and media space only on the damaging impact of pylons rather than the obscenity of the main event!!
18th Sept HINKLEY C – THE CUMBRIAN CONNECTION –LETTER TO TERESA MAY PM “The spent fuel will remain on site until it has cooled sufficiently to allow it to be disposed of to the GDF, which may be around 50 years after the end of generation.” So the Hinkley C plan hinges on “The GDF” being available to dump the “hot” waste in, notwithstanding the tsunami of day to day operational wastes that would come to Drigg..
September 19th 2016 DID GEORGE MONBIOT JUST POP THE WHITE ELEPHANT MYTH OF NEW NUCLEAR? George is ever so keen on new nuclear especially on burning plutonium wastes. So when he uses the term “white elephant” we should sit up and take notice. We should question why mainstream NGOs have allowed new nuclear proposals to become synonymous with a “White Elephant” rather than for example the far less benign “Hydra” monster of myth and legend
22nd September URANIUM HEXAFLOURIDE: CHESHIRE’S HIDDEN MENACE STOCKPILED Our colleagues at CLOSE CAPENHURST have dared to ask the questions “How Much Depleted Hex Is At Capenhust ? ? ? How Much Hex ? Uranium Hexafluoride is highly toxic, radioactive, corrosive to most metals, and reacts violently with water.
29th Sept NEW REPORT REVEALS: EDF NUCLEAR PLANTS AT RISK OF CATASTROPHIC FAILURE A new report finds that 28 nuclear reactors, 18 of them EDF plants in France and one at Sizewell in the UK, are at risk of failure ‘including core meltdown’ due to flaws in safety-critical components in reactor vessels and steam generators
October 5th FRACKING SELLAFIELD? Letter to the Communities Secretary Opposing Fracking in Lancashire. Radiation Free Lakeland add our voice to all those Lancashire Communities and Councils opposing Fracking. Here in Cumbria the new Detailed Emergency Planning Zone (DEPZ) for Sellafield as determined by the Office for Nuclear Regulation has dramatically increased the emergency zone following research on possible seismic activity . As you know Fracking may well trigger seismic events. The release of just 1percent of the radioactivity from Sellafield’s high level liquid wastes would render much of the U.K Uninhabitable and pollute the rest of the world. The U.K. is already too small for the existing nuclear plants and in particular the uniquely vulnerable radioactive wastes at Sellafield.Please do not approve fracking activity in Lancashire which is just a stones throw from Sellafield in geological and seismic terms.”
October 9th 2016 WASDALE SHOW – 100% SAY STOP MOORSIDE This is remarkable given that this area is being bigged up as a “Nuclear Heartland” by Tom Samson the Chief Executive of Nugen (60% Toshiba and 40% Engie).The heart of Cumbria is alive and well no thanks to the heart tissue destroying Strontium emissions from the nuclear industry.
October 31st LAKELAND STORY FOR ALL HALLOWS EVE – THE BEAST OF BECKERMET It seems the official bodies tasked with protecting our wildlife have been well and truly nobbled by the insidious many-headed nuclear beast. Maybe the Woodwose as protector of the woods and wildlife is needed now more than ever? But who will protect the habitat of the Beast of Beckermet?
November 6th 2016 VIKING HOARD FOUND AT PROPOSED NUCLEAR SITE IN CUMBRIA A Viking Hoard found at Beckermet was actually found on the site earmarked by the UK government for the “biggest nuclear development in Europe”. It has been determined a National Treasure. “Hoards” have filled in the blanks for certain murky periods of history, and even re-written history.
November 30th 2016 NUCLEAR FREE LOCAL AUTHORITIES ENDORSE DAMNING REPORT The independent report was drafted by Pete Roche, the NFLA Scotland Policy Advisor and an independent consultant on nuclear policy. It was commissioned by the Cumbrian NGO Radiation Free Lakeland. “significant and alarming problems with this reactor design that could lead to catastrophic damage in the event of a serious accident.”
December 11th WHAT WILL BE POWERING YOUR DINNER THIS CHRISTMAS?
New Campaign Launched in Lancaster– Don’t Buy Nuclear Waste! To switch to a 100% renewable electricity supplier start here: http://www.greenelectricity.org/
December 8th 2016 AUSTRIA THANKS CUMBRIANS. Marianne Birkby, Radiation Free Lakeland’s founder says, “ this acknowledgment and moral support from Austria sends us much needed encouragement to continue and to build on the resistance to Moorside. As the Federal Chancellor says, Europe needs citizens who advocate the exit from nuclear energy. Campaigning on the pylon route alone will not cut it. It is up to groups and individuals in Cumbria to join and to put their shoulders to the wheel in building resistance so that we can stop the biggest nuclear development in Europe and ensure a safe and sustainable future.”