To many in the industry, this unassuming Swedish plant on the shores of the Baltic represents the most advanced method yet developed for handling nuclear waste – and offers valuable lessons for Britain as it embarks on the construction of a new generation of nuclear reactors.
Times 8th March 2008 more >>
Letter from Michael Meacher: Your report (£470m nuclear white elephant, March 3) raises the serious and unresolved issue of how expensive public projects should be approved. This Mox plant at Sellafield was predicted to produce 120 tonnes of fuel a year, so that over the five years of operation to 2006-07 it should have produced 600 tonnes. It actually produced 5.2 tonnes, 0.8% of the amount predicted. But it has cost taxpayers nearly half a billion pounds. As minister for the environment, I adamantly opposed the decision to approve this plant in September 2001 on the grounds that it was nowhere near economic, but was overridden by Margaret Beckett (then the secretary of state) and her chief nuclear official, Richard Wood – pressed no doubt also by the strongly pro-nuclear Tony Blair. What the disastrous consequences of this decision now make plain, like the IT fiascos which have cost the taxpayer billions, is that the political process for approving enormous projects like these is wholly inadequate. These projects require much more systematic, technical and above all independent evaluation. Officials cannot provide this, and anyway are usually dependent on industry for most of their information.
Guardian 8th March 2008 more >>
Today would have seen the latest gathering of the band of women who have assembled on the second Saturday of each month since the 1980s to object to the continuing development of the United Kingdom’s nuclear deterrent. Instead, following a High Court ruling this week, the protest tents are being removed, demonstrators are being threatened with arrest and “no camping” signs are being erected.
Independent 8th March 2008 more >>