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Anti nuclear march in west Cumbria

Anti nuclear campaigners will be marching from Seascale to the gates of Sellafield nuclear plant in west Cumbria to campaign for the safe storage of the country's radioactive waste.

In January County councillors voted against burying the waste somewhere in the west of the county. It is currently stored in above ground containers at Sellafield.

Our focus will now be on ensuring the waste stored at Sellafield is kept in suitably safe conditions - in line with the recommendations of Cumbria County Council Cabinet's decision and the National Audit Office findings.

"In partnership with Radiation Free Lakeland, we are holding a 3-fold event on March 9th which will be:

– Fiona Goldie, Three weeks to Save the Lakes campaign
  • A celebratory walk to acknowledge the County Cabinet's NO vote.
  • Highlighting of the need to secure existing waste in situ at sellafield and improve storage facilities/minimise radioactive contamination of the surrounding environment
  • Meeting in solidarity with the people of Fukushima and marking the anniversary of the disaster

"Radiation from Sellafield affects the local environment and particles from the plant cause contamination of the the surrounding area.

"Testing of the beaches around the plant have identified high radiation levels. The authorities in Cumbria have decided against warning signs on the beach.

"We will be putting some notices up on the beach, followed by a walk to the Sellafield gates with banners to show solidarity with the Fukushima demo in London.'

– Fiona Goldie, Three weeks to Save the Lakes campaign

The demonstration starts at 10.30 at Seascale car park.

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Milestone reached in decommissioning Chapelcross

Workers see off the last spent fuel rod to leave Chapelcross Credit: ITV News Border

A milestone in the decommissioning of Chapelcross was reached today when the last flask of spent fuel left the plant.

The container with around 150 fuel rods on board was transported by lorry from south-west Scotland to be reprocessed at Sellafield in Cumbria.

The former nuclear power plant at Chapelcross stopped producing electricity in 2004.

Its iconic cooling towers were demolished nearly six years ago, however there are still 1300 tonnes of asbestos to clear from the site, along with some intermediate level radioactive waste.

The final steps in the decommissioning process are not expected to finish until 2085.

NDA: 'Tough decisions had been put off for future generations to deal with'

John Clarke, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority said prior to the NDA being formed there was no credible lifetime plan for Sellafield.

“The NDA welcomes the PAC Report and looks forward to discussing detailed points and recommendations with DECC before responding in full.”

Prior to the NDA's inception there was no credible lifetime plan for Sellafield and tough decisions about how we ultimately decommission the site had simply been put off for future generations to deal with. We are now facing up to those challenges and for the first time we have a proper plan in place for the decommissioning of Sellafield which lays out in detail programmes of work for every area of the site.

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– John Clarke, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority

Sellafield Ltd 'welcomes' report

The company that runs Sellafield says it welcomes today's report which highlights a build up of waste and the cost of cleaning up the site. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority owns the site but it is run by Sellafield Ltd.

Sellafield Ltd welcomes the publication of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC)’s report into the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority. We will now take our time to fully consider the report, its conclusions and the recommendations of the PAC.

– Sellafield Ltd

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Protestors gather against nuclear waste depository

Anti-nuclear protestors have gathered in Bowness-on-Windermere to demonstrate against plans to build an underground storage facility for radio-active waste.

Cumbria County Council and Allerdale and Copeland councils will decide on January 30th whether to proceed to the next stage in the plans.

But those who oppose the decision to site a geological waste facility in West Cumbria say are calling for an end to the "mad plan".

They are concerned about safety issues and add that it will damage the image of Cumbria as a tourist destination.

Cumbria County Council has said that no decision would be made about whether Cumbria should have a repository or not on January 30.

Instead, councillors will be deciding on whether geological experts should carry out the necessary work to see whether Cumbria could be the right location or not.

Hundreds attend meeting in Keswick

More than 500 people attended a meeting in Keswick to discuss their opposition to

the idea of burying radioactive waste being buried under the Lake District or the Solway.

Cumbria County Council, Allerdale Council and Copeland Council are to vote on whether the Government should include West Cumbria in a list of sites being searched for a a new underground repository for high-level radioactive waste.

A quarter of West Cumbria was ruled out of the site search by a preliminary report of the British Geological Survey in 2010.

Seventy five per cent of the area left is within the national park.

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