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Poor UK new nuclear industry !- stalled by Cumbria’s rejection of waste dump

Oscar-wastesMuch of the UK’s high level nuclear waste is stored above ground at SellafieldNo other community had come forward as a potential site, and no other community looks likely to. And given West Cumbria’s nuclear history it always seemed the best bet.

The government also has to find a solution. It will be harder to justify new nuclear power stations if the country can’t find a long term way of dealing with its existing waste problem.

Is it all over for Cumbrian nuclear waste store plans?, BBC News 1 Feb 13,  The long term plan could have seen nuclear waste buried underground in Cumbria For the second time in 14 years the hunt for a long-term solution to Britain’s nuclear waste stockpile seems to have foundered in Cumbria.

flag-UKIn 1999 Cumbria County Council rejected plans for a rock laboratory that could have paved the way for an underground nuclear waste store. And now the same council has again withdrawn as a potential site for a repository. Cumbria’s decision The majority of the council’s executive decided the county wasn’t suitable. The government has also said it accepts Cumbria’s decision and will look elsewhere.

So is it all over?

Apparently not. …….. now there is talk of Copeland going it alone….. the problem of the country’s high level nuclear waste hasn’t gone away. It also remains a Cumbrian problem as 75% of it is stored above ground at Sellafield.

You can also imagine the government being pretty receptive. Much of the UK’s high level nuclear waste is stored above ground at SellafieldNo other community had come forward as a potential site, and no other community looks likely to. And given West Cumbria’s nuclear history it always seemed the best bet.

Safety concerns

The government also has to find a solution. It will be harder to justify new nuclear power stations if the country can’t find a long term way of dealing with its existing waste problem.

And the current arrangements were criticised last year when a National Audit Office report raised concerns about the safety of storage of waste at Sellafield. It talked about it being “housed in buildings which pose intolerable risks to people and the environment”.

So it may be prepared to look at ways that Copeland could follow its own path. The council could, for example, continue to investigate sites to see if the geology would be suitable for a waste store. But even if that’s possible – and legally Cumbria has officially withdrawn – it will be controversial…..

Even if Cumbria had said yes this week, a store would not have been built for decades.

“Start Quote

We will continue to oppose underground dumping anywhere in the UK”

Martin ForwoodCumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment

If a way was found for investigations to continue, there could be a different set of councillors, maybe even different councils, by the time a new decision has to be made. The government might also look again at what incentives it could offer to persuade Cumbria to press on. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-21295465

February 2, 2013 - Posted by | politics, UK, wastes

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