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UK Environment Agency (EA) will let Atomic Weapons Establishment’s (AWE) release more radioactive isotopes into the air

NIS 31st May 2018 The Environment Agency (EA) have announced that they are planning to
approve the Atomic Weapons Establishment’s (AWE) application to to
increase the quantity of volatile beta emitters that AWE Aldermaston is
permitted to release into the environment.

Beta emitters are radioactive elements that produce beta radiation. Volatile is a chemistry term which
refers to a substance that tends to vaporise and become a gas. AWE’s
application for the increase to the limit was announced in late January,
and there was a consultation on the application which ended in February.

The Environment Agency have now released a draft decision which approves
the proposed increase to the limit. Under their current license AWE are
allowed to release 4.4 megabecquerels (MBq) of volatile beta emitters into
the air as gas every year. The draft decision allows them to increase the
limit to 100 MBq a year, an increase of 22 times, or 2200%. A becquerel is
a measure of the quantity of radioactive material. One bequerel is the
quantity of material where radioactive decay will occur once every second.
A megabecquerel means one million becquerels of material. The EA is running
a consultation on the draft decision, which closes on the 6th June.

June 1, 2018 - Posted by | radiation, UK

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