“Population Mixing” and Moorside – No One Wants to Talk! WHY?



Tim Farron has written on behalf of Radiation Free Lakeland to the Director of Public Health Cumbria County Council Colin Cox, Regarding construction of Moorside and “Population Mixing.”

“Population mixing” is a red herring used to explain the up to 20 times (Maryport) and 10 times (Seascale) acknowledged excess in cancers on the West Coast of Cumbria. IF the government will not take responsibility for radioactive emissions as a cause of excess cancer then it must take responsibility for its belief that “population mixing” is the cause of excess cancers. The public should be warned.

Radiation  Free Lakeland has written to all the prospective parliamentary candidates for Copeland on this crucial matter of public health- not one has replied.

Correspondence with Tim Farron MP below

Our Ref: Birk004/52/jag > 13 > February > 2017

Dear Marianne

Thank you very much for having taken the time to attend my advice surgery  at Kendal Leisure Centre on Friday morning with regard to the recent petition work you have undertaken at Workington and your request to re-send a letter to Colin Cox who heads up Public Health for Cumbria > regarding population mixing and who takes responsibility for this.  I can see why this explanation would be a great cause for concern, given  the projected 20,000 jobs which are likely to be generated alongside the 4,430 people in Cumbria currently claiming either JSA or Universal Credit.  I am pleased to confirm that I have written to the Director of Public Health, Cumbria to ask, following the work of the Health Impact assessment  which was undertaken on behalf of the Moorside Health Impact Assessment  Steering group whether any conclusions were reached on whether the  Government and the industry should take responsibility for population mixing and cumulative radioactive emissions from existing and new reactors. I will write again, when I have received the response. ..

With best wishes

Yours sincerely  Tim Farron MP

9th Feb 2017

Dear Tim Farron MP, Last May 2016 we wrote to the Director of Public Health along with hundreds of other concerned Cumbrians asking the following questions: A Government Committee recently said that “Population Mixing” caused by an influx of nuclear workers resulted in “a Mystery Virus.”

They said this is the likely cause of increased leukaemias near Sellafield. This view is rather undermined by the Sellafield workers having a Compensation Scheme for Radiation Linked Diseases. There are higher incidences of many diseases in the vicinity of Sellafield including childhood eye cancers and Downs Syndrome. Do you believe, like the government, that “population mixing” is the cause of the acknowledged and well documented excess of childhood leukaemia near Sellafield? Or do you agree with the co-discoverer of plutonium and uranium, Dr John Gofman that there is no safe dose of radiation?

Which do you think the government and the industry should take responsibility for:

A) Population Mixing?

B) Cumulative Radioactive Emissions from existing and new reactors? The reply we received back from Colin Cox, the Director of Public Health Cumbria was dismissive and we are still waiting for an answer to our questions: “I am the Chair of the Moorside Health Impact Assessment Steering Group. Health Impact Assessment (HIA) is a rigorous approach to identifying and mitigating any health risks, and identifying and maximising any health gains, arising from this development. At its meeting this morning, the steering group agreed that the issue of population mixing will be considered within the overall HIA. The HIA is due to be completed by the end of this year. I will not be making any public comment on this matter before this process is complete. I hope this information is helpful. Regards, Colin Cox Colin Cox Director of Public Health Cumbria County Council” Given that John Woodcock MP insists that Moorside would bring over 20,000 jobs to Cumbria, a county with 4000 claiming either JSA or Universal Credit is this more of a threat than a promise? It seems to us that whether the well documented increase in cancers is due to an influx of nuclear workers or radioactive emissions, this is a lose-lose situation with regards the health and safety of Cumbrians. We have written to an acknowledged expert and member of government committees relating to Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment and Dr Paul Dorfman’s reply to us is below. ________________________________ From: Dorfman, Paul Sent: 13 June 2016 09:59 To: mariannebirkby@mariannebirkby.plus.com Subject: Re: Population Mixing V Radioactive Emissions. Govnt want their cake and eat it?] Dear Marianne Thank you for your letter concerning the key issue of childhood leukaemia in Cumbria. As you may know, I served as Secretary to the UK governmental scientific advisory Committee Examining Radiation Risks from Internal Emitters (CERRIE), where we reported on this issue. I am also currently an advisor on radiation risk to the Irish Government Environment Protection Agency (EPA), and am an advisor to the UK MoD on the dismantling of the laid-up UK nuclear submarine flotilla. In other words, I am an acknowledged expert on radiation risk. Regards future risk of childhood ill-health in Cumbria – I, like you, am of the clear opinion that the acknowledged significant increase in childhood leukaemia in Cumbria is associated with radiation releases from nuclear power plant. However, there is no question but that the view of the key UK governmental radiation risk scientific advisory body – the Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (COMARE) – is that the Cumbrian childhood leukaemia excess is most likely associated with a ‘population mixing’. In other words, COMARE, and hence the UK government state that the Cumbrian childhood leukaemia excess is due to a novel virus brought in by a large number of construction workers which then goes on to infect a relatively isolated local population who do not have a defense against this virus. In this context, the UK government must take responsibility for this view. Thus the UK government must inform the local community to expect a potential increase in risk of childhood leukeamia following the construction of the planned nuclear facility at Moorside. Sincerely Paul Dr Paul Dorfman The Energy Institute University College London Central House 14 Upper Woburn Place London WC1HH 0NN +44 (0)7972385303 Founder, Nuclear Consulting Group http://www.nuclearconsult.com/ Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust Nuclear Policy Research Fellow

Last weekend in Workington we collected more signatures to add to the hundreds of letters already sent to the Director of Public Health in Cumbria to again remind him to reply to our questions. We would be very grateful if you could pass this letter on to him with the following questions for which we are still awaiting a reply. Which do you think the government and the industry should take responsibility for: A) Population Mixing? B) Cumulative Radioactive Emissions from existing and new reactors? Yours sincerely Marianne Birkby Radiation Free Lakeland


EDF Disses Nuclear !

Nuclear Power Nuclear War Everyday JFK quote

INcredible admission from a senior Vice President of EDF that nuclear is “dying”

This is from this weeks newsletter http://www.carboncommentary.com.
Industry news

Week ending 19th February 2017

1, EDF and decentralised energy. Les Echos, the French business newspaper, carried an extraordinary article from a Senior Vice President of EdF, the largely state-owned utility that will build the nuclear reactor at Hinkley Point in England. Mark Boillot contends that ‘large nuclear or thermal power plants designed to function as baseload are challlenged by the more flexible decentralized model’. He says that the centralised model of power production is dying, to be replaced by local solar and wind, supplemented by batteries and intelligent management of supply and demand. Not only will this be cheaper in the long run but customers are actually prepared to pay more for solar electricity and actively work to reduce usage at times of shortage. His conclusion is that ‘the traditional model must adapt to the new realities, thus allowing the utilities to emerge from …hypercentralized structures in a world that is becoming more and more decentralized’. In most jurisdictions Mr Boillot would have been asked to clear his desk. What will EdF do about one of its most senior people openly forecasting the end of the large power station as it tries to raise the ten billion Euros necessary to pay for its share of Hinkley?

Featured Image -- 10364

How to institutionalise the world

Interesting essay ……


by Darren Allen

Welcome to the World.

You are alone and in enemy territory; stumbling around a frustrating, exhausting, shoddy reality which is, at its core, hostile to life in all its forms. Your instincts to share, cooperate and bring the necessities of life within reach of ordinary people are relentlessly punished. Your conscience is a burden here, your talents are useless, your uniqueness a liability and your actual experience of life a threat.

The only way you can survive in this place, much less accept that it makes any kind of sense, is to have your finer instincts amputated. No easy matter—in fact the eradication of your consciousness, creativity and sensitivity is a lifelong profess, beginning in the proto-institution of the home, continuing through fifteen to twenty years of intensive schooling and ending with forty to sixty years of work in the institutions of the world, also known as…

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Radiation Free Lakeland’s Marianne Birkby is honoured to be invited to speak at the next Mystery Tea House film showing in Preston. …‘Into Eternity’ organised by REAL, Friends of the Earth and Beautiful Planet

This eye opening film is of more relevance to Preston and the North West than we are being led to believe.   The film will be shown on 24th February at 7pm

Plans for the biggest nuclear power development in Europe on the West Coast of Cumbria, Geological Dumping of Nuclear Waste under the Lake District and the risks of fracking  just five miles from the worlds first nuclear fuel manufacturing plant will be discussed.

What has the planned geological dump for nuclear wastes in Finland got to do with Preston? More than you think!!

Hope to see you there!

Treasure Trove on the Ancient Greenfields of Moorside


This months Cumbria Life carries a story about the Important Viking Treasure Trove found by two lucky archeological enthusiasts.  What the story neglects to mention is that this treasure was found on the land known as “Moorside” earmarked for three dangerous nuclear reactors.  …..

CUMBRIA LIFE February 2017

Treasure Trove

Viking hoard discovered in Beckermet on display.

Viking treasure unearthed by two Cumbrian amateur archeological enthusiasts will go on display at The Beacon in Whitehaven this month.

Justin Bell and Daniel Boakes who are  both from West Cumbria, found 20 silver items dating from the 10th century while metal detecting in the Beckermet area in August 2014.

The 16 ingots and four rings were sent to the British Museum to be verified before being returned to Cumbria.  The Viking Hoard will go on display from Saturday February 18th and will be officially launched by Justin and Daniel on Saturday February 25th.

Elizabeth Kwasnik director of the museum, said: “we are delighted to have the Norse hoard as a key part of Copeland’s historic collection.  It will give the community a focal point to understand more about the Scandinavian people who settled in this area and became part of our ancestry.”

Evidence suggests that the hoard could have been brought to Cumbria from as far away as Russia.

The discovery is the second such find in Cumbria in recent years.  The Furness Hoard was found on farmland near Dalton inFurness in 2011.  It is on display in the Dock Museum, Barrow in Furness.




Peace Camp looking for caravans: drop us a hint or an offer! Public, we need your help!

Want to send your old caravan to a really good home….here’s how!

Faslane Peace Camp

In 35 years many bits and pieces of the camp infrastructure have risen, fallen and risen again. One of the most characteristic parts of the Peace Camp infrastructure are probably the caravans, which keep on housing the arriving anti-nuclear activists. And we love these caravans, we love them to bits. Literally. Some of the vans are almost as old as the camp itself: and no matter how much love and carpentry you shower them with, eventually they retire themselves.

Well loved, but nothing stays young forever.  Help us to expand our collection of colorful caravans! Well loved, but nothing stays young forever. Help us to expand our collection of colorful caravans!

Currently, we are renewing many parts of the camp infrastructure and building many things totally new. And this is something we need YOUR help with! You are most welcome to join us in direct activities against the nuclear madness: but there are many other ways to help this struggle, too.

Thus: we are looking for…

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Open Letter to All Copeland Candidates


Toxic Love – Image by Andy Liepzig

The following letter was published in the Whitehaven News today.  It is a question we have asked repeatedly…

An Open Letter to All the Candidates in the Copeland By Election

Radiation Free Lakeland are a campaign group for nuclear safety with many supporters in West Cumbria.   Last September the science correspondents of all the national newspapers reported on the release of a new report which should concern all the Copeland candidates.

Since the 1980s there have been concerns that nuclear plants were causing leukaeimia in children after disease rates were found to be up to 20 times greater than the national average in communities like Seascale and Maryport

On 30th September 2016 the Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment (Comare) said there was no evidence that it was nuclear power plants themselves which were behind the increase, as, they said, the radioactive emissions “are too low.”

Instead, they said it was more likely that the large influx of people who moved to rural areas to staff the plants had brought in a mystery virus, which had triggered cancer in the children of local populations. They call this “population mixing.” Historically this was rather less of an increase than that which is being proposed now for Moorside which makes John Woodcock’s carrot of over “20,000 jobs” (Cumbria has 4000 receiving JSA or Universal Credit ) more of a threat than a promise.

How likely is it that previous governments would have knowingly instigated an increase of up to 20 times the national average of childhood leukaemia in Cumbria? Anyone who has been through their child being diagnosed with leukaemia knows the heartache and that their lives and the lives of their whole family and network of friends will be changed forever, whatever the outcome. What on earth could be worth even the risk of one child having leukaemia?   In the 1950’s it was the special relationship with America and the Manhattan Project which drove the nuclear industry. One of the key scientists in the Manhattan Project was Dr John Gofman who described the licensing of new nuclear power plants as “premeditated murder” and said that there is evidence of harm to DNA “all the way down to the lowest doses” of radiation.   The reason we are told nuclear is “necessary” today is to provide so called “low carbon” electricity. Really? Even the CEO of the National Grid Steve Holliday says that the idea of large coal fired or nuclear power stations for “baseload” power is “outdated.”

Any MP for Copeland, host of the already intolerably dangerous “nuclear heartland’ is tasked not only with protecting the wider population but also West Cumbrians.

We would like to ask you the following question relating to the local population:

QUESTION: COMARE, and the UK government state that the Cumbrian childhood leukaemia excess is due to a novel virus brought in by a large number of construction workers which then goes on to infect a relatively rural local population.   Do you think that government must take responsibility for this view and inform the local community to expect an increase in childhood leukeamia following the construction of the planned nuclear facility at Moorside?

Yours sincerely,

Marianne Birkby

Radiation Free Lakeland


Incidence of Increased Cancers


COMARE and Childhood Leukaemia


National Grid – Nuclear is Outdated



UK Union pleads for money for nuclear reactor but is it feasible?

Unions are desperate for unlimited public money to be put into dangerous nuclear plans while hospitals and essential services are starved of cash. There is something seriously rotten at the heart of nuclear.


“There are substantial concerns about writing blank cheques so policy is more to work extremely hard to make sure that this happens if all possible.” Mr Lenox said a £6bn gap in funding would be left if Toshiba did not come on board and it would be “crazy” to put that amount of money in.
16 February 2017
The Labour and Tory by-election candidates for Copeland locked horns over whether the Government should underwrite investment into the planned Moorside nuclear power station. Prime Minister Theresa May had earlier been accused by the GMB union, which represents nuclear workers, of “ducking” concerns about the future of the development after huge losses reported by Toshiba, one of its backers while on a visit to Copeland.
The question arose again at a hustings, staged by GMB, in Whitehaven on Wednesday night when candidates Trudy Harrison (Conservative), Gillian Troughton (Labour), Rebecca Hanson (Liberal Democrats)…

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Hey TOSHIBA and Co..Can the UK survive fracking in the vicinity of nuclear sites?

Fylde fracking

The following article was first published on Sisco Media 29th January 2017…

Question: Is it possible that by shining a light on nuclear we could also scupper fracking?

Eyes on Fylde Fracking AND Nuclear

In October the communities secretary, Sajid Javid, overruled a decision by Lancashire County Council and said that Cuadrilla could frack at Little Plumpton, near Preston against the wishes of the local council.  Fracking campaigners are now bravely taking non-violent direct action on the front line. Cuadrilla’s plan is to drill down thousands of feet into the rock and take samples prior to full on fracking. Anti-nuclear campaigners have also fought fracking these last few years, for very good reason.  The government halted all onshore fracking operations in 2011 over concerns at earth tremors after fracking at the Preese Hall site in Lancashire, which were attributed to Cuadrilla’s operations there.  Preese Hall is six miles away from the world’s first and probably biggest nuclear fuel production plant, Springfields in Preston.  Little Plumpton is a mere five miles away.

Proximity of Nuclear Fuel Plant to Frack Sites

In October 2014 architect Maureen Kelly wrote to the then Energy and Climate Change Minister, Edward Davey, to raise concerns regarding the proximity of fracking sites to nuclear establishments and requested that no fracking sites be located within 50 miles of any nuclear establishment. Cuadrilla’s proposed frack site of Little Plumpton is just 5.33 miles from Springfields nuclear fuel fabrication plant.

Fylde fracking

Radioactive Risks of Fracking and Nuclear

At Little Plumpton, back in 2014 when the site was being eyed-up by the fracking industry, anti-nuclear campaigners joined with anti-fracking campaigners in a protest camp. There were even art and science workshops on the radioactive risks of fracking and nuclear.  Of these two extreme energy industries, Jonathon Porritt has commented:

“Anyone serious about a genuinely sustainable energy strategy for the UK should be as implacably opposed to fracking as they are to the idea of new nuclear power stations. When these twin horrors of our wholly unsustainable energy legacy are put together, in close juxtaposition, we should all be up in arms.”

Deep down in the earth where Cuadrilla plan to frack for shale gas at Little Plumpton there’s a lot of radioactivity.  The technical term is NORM (Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM). The decay of Thorium 232 and Uranium 238 to Radon, Radium and Polonium, drives the earth’s natural processes, but it’s best left in the ground where it belongs.

Nuclear Power meanwhile deliberately mines the earth’s most radioactive material for fuel.  All the links in the nuclear fuel chain generate radionuclides of a kind and scale not seen in nature.  The releases increase when the reactor is refuelled, or when accidents happen. Releases to air include Tritium, Americium, Krypton, Xenon and Radioactive Carbon. Releases to water and air from Sellafield reprocessing include Plutonium, Cesium, Technetium and Strontium 90.

No Independent Monitoring of Radioactive Emissions

In 2015 Radiation Free Lakeland wrote to all members of Lancashire’s Development Control Committee urging them to oppose the two applications for fracking in Lancashire at Little Plumpton and at Roseacre Wood, both within spitting distance of the Springfields Nuclear Fabrication plant near Preston.  RaFL’s letter said:

“Both Lancashire and Cumbria already have an intolerable burden of accumulating radioactive wastes from the nuclear industry without adding fracking wastes to the mix. People in Cumbria and Lancashire ask that these two county councils get together to reinstate independent radiation monitoring. There is already an escalation of risk to the public with:

  1. Proposed accelerated imports of Uranium Hexaflouride for new nuclear reactors.
  2. Uranium Enrichment at Capenhurst in Cheshire Capenhurst in Cheshire
  3. Fuel manufacture at Springfields in Preston Fuel Manufacture at Springfields
  4. At each stage there is dispersal of radioactive waste to the environment: to air, to landfill to watercourses eg the River Ribble

“We ask that Lancashire County Council take responsibility and

  • Refuse all applications for fracking
  • Reintroduce independent radioactive monitoring in Lancashire of the kind Lancashire County Council (Radiation Monitoring in Lancashire) did up until it was scrapped due to Council cuts a few years ago.”

To their credit Lancashire County Council did listen and take on board the warnings and opposition from local people and stopped Cuadrilla in their tracks.  For this decision then to be overturned by the Communities Secretary is reprehensible.

Our request for the reintroduction of radiation monitoring was dismissed.

Andrew Smith, BSc., PhD., M.Chem.A., C.Sci., C.Chem., M.R.S.C.  from Lancashire County Council 
County Scientific Service stated:

“The decision to discontinue radiation monitoring was taken about three years ago 
by the Lancashire Chief Environmental Health Officers group. This was mainly due to budgetary pressure and the recognition that the background levels of radiation were very well established.   It was also decided that the remaining equipment would be held by Lancashire
 County Scientific Services and maintained in good working order in case it might
 assist in the recovery phase of an nuclear incident.   As the pressures on budgets have not eased I cannot see RADMIL being reinstated in the foreseeable future.”

Virtual Black Out

The explorative (in the UK) fracking industry’s dangerous credentials have been well spotlighted by NGOs for several years. Meanwhile over the same period the long entrenched nuclear industry has been gearing up its activity in a virtual blackout. Many of the young fracking activists at the Preston New Road 2014 protest camp had never heard of Springfields (five miles away) or Sellafield – the front and back end of the nuclear chain.  At the front end, Uranium is ripped out of the ground in eg. Peru, Kazakhstan, Canada and Africa.

Martyn Lowe of Close Capenhurst Close Capenhurst tells us that “boats send this dangerous raw material of uranium to Urenco at Capenhurst in Cheshire, to be enriched (near proposed fracking sites ).”  Enriched uranium is then taken in the form of an incredibly dangerous gas Uranium Hexaflouride on to Springfields, near Preston, where it is turned from gas to powder and so on into fuel rods.   The Springfields site has said that:

“Processing several thousand tonnes of uranium a year, UK Fuel Business, based at Springfields has the experience and technology to manufacture fuel for all major designs of nuclear reactor across the globe.  UK Fuel Business has produced fuel for all of Britain’s nuclear power stations as well as fuel and intermediate uranium products for overseas customers”.

A Big Deal

This incredibly dangerous activity is set to explode at Springfields with the plan to provide untested “high burn” fuel for  “dangerous” and “not-fit-for-purpose” new reactors. The operators of Springfields, Westinghouse (bought out by the financially downward-spiralling Toshiba ) have signed a 150-year lease with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.  Maybe it is no accident that there is a lack of attention being directed to the first plant in the world to make nuclear fuel also being the first place in the North West to be under direct threat of fracking.  Inevitably, waste from Springfield’s spent fuel, once burned in reactors, will end up at Sellafield “reprocessing” site . Here profligate amounts of fossil fuel are used: over £30M a year on gas.

Shine a Light on Nuclear to Stop Fracking in the UK?

The reasons to shine a light on the nuclear industry are many, not least the certain danger posed to us all by the prospect of increased seismic activity in this area of the North West which houses Sellafield, Trident, Heysham, Springfields and Capenhurst. Maybe it is a very good  time for mainstream NGOs to look to their anti-nuclear roots in the UK, and to shine the media light on nuclear.

You never know, in the process this might just put the much needed brakes on both fracking AND the nuclear industry




Petition:Lock the Gate on Drigg!

Petition:Stop Moorside!

Westinghouse may also be forced out of nuclear plant construction business

Someone should tell the prospective MPs for Copeland who were nuclear cheerleading for Moorside last night…all that was missing was the Pom Poms …do they think that the public will be delighted to build Cancer factories with unlimited public money while hospitals, and essential services are squeezed till the pips squeak?


“They were kind of really scared and concerned what the implications of this whole unraveling is going to be,” he said. Chris Gadomski


Sometime today, Japan’s Toshiba, owner of Pennsylvania-based nuclear power icon Westinghouse Electric, will reveal an impairment charge to Westinghouse, Kallanish Energy learns.

More than a month ago, Toshiba told shareholders to expect a multi-billion-dollar writedown charged to Westinghouse – expected to be roughly $6 billion – due to the nuclear company’s purchase of Chicago Bridge & Iron’s (CB&I’s) Stone & Webster nuclear construction company two years ago.

Last month, Toshiba CEO Satoshi Tsunakawa told reporters Toshiba is likely to exit the nuclear construction business outside of Japan, which would make Westinghouse a technology designer and service provider – not a nuclear plant builder.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s head of nuclear research, Chris Gadomski, said he thinks the company might be better off with a narrowed…

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