Thursday, April 27, 2006

CoRWM says bury the nuclear waste

Do you live in any of these places? A nuclear waste dump could be coming to you, acording to the draft report of CoRWM published today.

  • Adjacent to Bradwell nuclear power station in Essex
  • Ministry of Defence land on Potton Island, 8 km from Southend on Sea. Essex
  • Under the North Sea, accessed from the port at Redcar, Yorkshire
  • Under the sea between the Inner Hebrides and Northern Ireland, accessed from the port at Hunterston in North Ayrshire
  • Killingholme, South Humberside
  • Ministry of Defence training area, Stanford, Norfolk
  • Adjacent to Dounreay nuclear plant in Caithness
  • Two sites near the Sellafield nuclear plant in Cumbria
  • Altnabreac in Caithness 18 km south of Dounreay
  • Fuday, small, uninhabited island north of Barra in the Western Isles
  • Sandray, small, uninhabited island south of Barra in the Western Isles
Hmm. How come Westminster isn't on the list?
After years of shilly-shallying, is deep storage the best they can do? Yes. Which just goes to show how dumb it would be to create more of the stuff.

Listening to the report being announced, it was clear from the tone of voice of CoRWM Chairman Gordon MacKerron on BBC's World At One, that he is deeply reluctant about any of the options, and realises full well that any community earmarked for the endeavour will rise up in opposition.

Although he said 'no comment' to a query on his thoughts on waste transport and new nuclear build, because he doesn't want to be drawn into that minefield, again, his tone suggested anyone would be mad to create more of this nightmarish stuff.

CoRWM has said that if Britain builds 10 new reactors this would produce an extra 31,900 cubic metres of spent fuel, on top of the 8,150 cubic metres currently stored. The implication being that there's simply no room for it.

A month ago, travelling on the M54 at night, the Low Carbon Kid passed a nuclear waste convoy. Five specially built vehicles were trundling over two lanes down the road. Only one was carrying the waste.

Are these costs and safety issues built into these expensive reports or industry lobbying documents? The Low Carbon Kid would love to see any evidence of this.

Greens say that any method eventually found to manage a legacy of radioactive waste for thousands of years would require it to be retrievable and monitorable. And that deep storage underground is an 'out of sight out of mind' method of dealing with the legacy and reinforces the extent of the problem we have created for future generations.

Green MSP Baird has said today: "The nuclear industry claims that new nuclear power stations will only add 10% to our current problem. This is a dishonest claim and I am pleased that CORWM clarify this on their website that it will in fact add over 300% to the high level waste mountain."

>> CoRWM’s package of draft recommendations for the long-term management of the UK's radioactive waste

>> CoRWM’s Radioactive Waste and Materials Inventory

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