Letter from Marianne Birkby: On November 3, Allerdale Borough Council will be considering ‘withdrawing an expression of interest in geological disposal’ following a motion by Councillor Joe Sandwith. Contrary to the media hype, Cumbria has not ‘volunteered’. Cumbria county councillors were not allowed to vote on geological disposal. Less than five people in the county council cabinet took the decision to ‘express an interest’. We urge Allerdale Borough Council to support Councillor Sandwith’s motion to withdraw. Many groups in Cumbria, representing thousands of people, have already publicly expressed opposition to the geological disposal of high level nuclear wastes in Cumbria which would include the “high burn up” waste from new build. The more genuinely informed people become about the consequences of geological disposal the more likely the expression of opposition.
Cumberland News 29th Oct 2010 more >>
HUNDREDS of protesters held a demonstration at the opening of a public inquiry into plans for a radioactive waste dump. The hearing into the King’s Cliffe plans is being seen as a test case, after the Government changed rules to allow low level radioactive waste to be disposed of at local landfill sites. At the opening on Tuesday, at Corby’s Holiday Inn, there were protesters from King’s Cliffe, Oundle, Duddington, Bulwick, Apethorpe, Laxton and Peterborough. Clare Langan of protest group Waste Watchers said afterwards: “It was a fantastic turnout. It just goes to show the strength of feeling locally for the issue. There was a good spread of villages represented.” In his opening statement to inquiry inspector Ken Smith, Chris Leuchars of Waste Watchers said: “I would like to introduce you to some of the young people I am speaking up for. Look at them carefully, for they are the reason we are here. All of them are those who are going to be affected by decisions made as a result of these deliberations.” The inquiry is being held after Northamptonshire County Council refused planning permission for Augean, a specialist waste management company, to use part of its King’s Cliffe site for low level radioactive waste. Mr Leuchars said: “There is an intrinsic and widespread fear of radioactive material within the population. There is also an intrinsic distrust of private companies dealing with dangerous materials who are often perceived as putting a desire for profit above concerns for safety.”
Rutland & Stamford Mercury 30th Oct 2010 more >>
THE possible dangers and benefits of a new nuclear power station just 15 miles from the South Wales coast will be thrashed out at a public debate this week. The planned development at Hinkley Point, in Somerset, has sparked concerns about the impact it could have on South Wales. Representatives of EDF are expected to attend a meeting of the Vale council’s economy and environment scrutiny committee tomorrow. Opponents of the scheme are also expected to attend the meeting, which will be open to the public. The debate is the result of a request by Barry councillor Rob Curtis.
South Wales Echo 30th Oct 2010 more >>
THE power giant behind Wylfa B will launch a series of exhibitions across Anglesey and North Wales. Horizon Nuclear Power will set out its latest plans for a new nuclear power station at Wylfa.The exhibitions will outline the studies conducted in the past 12 months, give people the chance to ask questions about the project and discuss the next steps.
Daily Post 25th Oct 2010 more >>
Reactor construction costs are rising at high rates in many countries, certainly at “double digit” rates, as high as 15 percent per year since 2008, in the USA, Europe, China, India, and the Middle East. The explanation offered for this by the nuclear industry is “rising raw material costs”, and in some cases “more sophisticated designs”, for example safety features, ability to resist wide-body airplane crashes (in the case of French EPRs), more efficient utilisation of uranium, reduced cooling water needs, and so on. This can be compared with industry marketing claims of falling unit costs due to bigger reactors,, so-called modular design, industry standardized components – and investor enthusiasm.
Market Oracle 30th Oct 2010 more >>
Department of Justice pays compensation to wife of British airman who witnessed US tests after Ministry of Defence had refused to accept radiation led to his fatal throat cancer.
Observer 31st Oct 2010 more >>
Private companies led by the controversial US arms giant, Lockheed Martin, are bidding to take over the running of Britain’s top-secret nuclear bomb base on the Clyde, the Sunday Herald can reveal. The Royal Naval Armaments Depot at Coulport on Loch Long, managed by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) since the 1960s, is likely to be privatised in the next few months to try to save money. The heavily-guarded base is responsible for looking after the UK nuclear stockpile of more than 200 Trident warheads, and arming the four submarines that carry them. But the plan has already been greeted by a chorus of angry protests from trades unions, politicians and anti-nuclear groups which fear for public safety, jobs, costs and the independence of the UK’s nuclear weapons from the US. Questions have also been raised about the management record of Lockheed Martin.
Sunday Herald 31st Oct 2010 more >>
Ever since this country introduced its independent nuclear deterrent in 1952, it has been presented as the jewel in the crown of the nation’s defences. Although the submarine-borne delivery system was developed in conjunction with the US – currently the Trident missile – the warheads were originally designed and manufactured by the UK’s Atomic Weapons Research Establishment and its successor, the Atomic Weapons Establishment. In that way the UK kept up the notion that it was an independent nuclear power and this in turn was an important factor in retaining the country’s global position, not least its role as one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council. In a world in which perception is often as important as reality, that seemed to matter.
Sunday Herald 31st Oct 2010 more >>
Anti-nuclear campaigners from as far as Switzerland have been arriving in Plymouth this weekend for a non-violent and peaceful blockade of Devonport Dockyard beginning at 6am on Monday (1 November) called by the Plymouth-based Trident Ploughshares group, The Tamarians.
Independent Catholic News 31st Oct 2010 more >>
ALEX Salmond will this week announce a major training initiative to solve a looming skills crisis in Scotland’s renewable energy sector. The government is counting on thousands of workers from the offshore oil and gas industry retraining to work in green energy but experts warn that few universities and higher education colleges north of the Border provide the necessary courses.
Scotland on Sunday 31st Oct 2010 more >>