Weighting of evaluation criteria to allow more effective comparison between potential sites, and taking account of wider statutory obligations, are amongst the common key themes from a wide range of stakeholders’ responses to RWM’s Site Evaluation public consultation. Now closed, it is thought that the two parallel public consultations in England and in Wales have attracted about 70-80 responses. Some of those responses are published below, with permission of their authors. there are certain key issues or themes which appear across the stakeholder spectrum, from industry and local authorities to environmentalists and local activist groups. They also reflect issues raised at each of the regional stakeholder workshops which GDFWatch attended. These include: general awareness of the difficulty of using quantitative comparators, but a widespread sentiment that RWM need to find some way of ranking/weighting criteria so that a robust comparison can be made effectively between different sites under evaluation, especially when they might be at different stages of development; the need for RWM to take account of wider statutory obligations, on themselves and other third parties, eg the legal obligations placed on all public bodies under the Environment Act 1995 and the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000; the omission of any reference to the Future Generations Act (FGA) in the Welsh consultation document and the consequent statutory obligations placed upon RWM when operating in Wales; “community” site evaluation criteria should not just be ‘socioeconomic’, but look at wider social and environmental impacts, including governance of the siting process and how RWM will actually collaborate and work with communities; geology should be a more prominent criteria, particularly hydrogeology, amid ongoing public concern about contamination of underground water sources; the need to keep site evaluation criteria under review, for example by ensuring the criteria are aligned with the National Policy Statement (in England) and Technical Advisory Note (in Wales) when these are eventually published, and to consult again if necessary; whether ethics and intergenerational equity/justice should be included amongst the site evaluation criteria; “security”, on site and during transport of waste, is also frequently raised as a criteria which should be given more prominence.
GDF Watch 14th April 2019 read more »
Siting a geological disposal facility for our radioactive waste. At the Geological Society February 2019 Public Lecture, Jonathan Turner from Radioactive Waste Management, introduced us to one of the UK’s largest planned environmental projects: a Geological Disposal Facility (GDF) for our radioactive waste.
Geological Society of London Blog 26th March 2019 read more »
Experts in local democracy, community development, engagement and communications – do you want to help shape how communities can actively participate in decision-making for a major infrastructure project? Recruitment is underway for up to 8 new members for the Committee on Radioactive Waste Management (CoRWM), the Government’s expert advisory panel. This is the latest important step in CoRWM’s evolution from a purely scientific and technical group, to one which can also effectively monitor and advise on how RWM implements the Government’s Working With Communities policy.
GDF Watch 8th April 2019 read more »