Let’s make some more contaminated land – in England’s Lake District.

Oh what a jolly good idea. Absolutely no carbon (apart from all the machinery and transport and digging etc). Oh yea, nuclear waste and the crown of Britain’s natural realm – what a glorious mix. Besides there’s nowhere else to put it.

So much for “zero emissions nuclear”.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/lake-district-threatened-by-nuclear-waste-again-8815779.html Tom Bawden, Friday 13th 2013.

Lake District threatened by nuclear waste again

Controversial plans to bury highly toxic nuclear waste under the Lake District are back on the table just eight months after being conclusively rejected.

The proposals were dismissed by Cumbria County Council in January – but now the Government has enraged opponents by proposing to switch the final say to the district council.

The county council’s decision to abandon plans for the underground radioactive wastage storage centre near Sellafield was a major blow to government ambitions to build new nuclear power plants. Cumbria had been the only area to show an interest in storing such waste.

But a new consultation launched by the Government could sidestep the problem, by shifting the final say on whether an area can house a deep storage facility for nuclear waste from the county to the district council.

Cumbria County Council voted by more than 2 to 1 to pull out of feasibility studies into such a facility, following expert critiques of the fractured local geology and an international outcry over the threat to the Western Lake District. That vote over-ruled votes by the local Copeland and Allerdale District Councils to proceed.

The Government is selling its proposed change to the voting rule on the basis that it “represents an additional layer of consent – giving local communities the opportunity to decide whether or not they wise to proceed with the development of a GDF [geological disposal facility]”.

Geoff Betsworth, a local activist, disagrees. “It is a shock. It is undermining democracy to remove a layer of government in Cumbria county council. It is Orwellian and they will push it through regardless.”…..


Lake District National Park
Managing Radioactive Waste Safely Consultation

Between 2009 and 2013 Allerdale Borough Council, Copeland Borough Council, and Cumbria County Council were in discussions with the Government about potentially hosting a Geological Disposal Facility (GDF). We were one of the members of the partnership which gathered and considered information about the facility and the process.

In January 2013 the decision was taken by Cumbria County Council to not proceed with investigations for a Geological Disposal Facility in West Cumbria, and the Managing Radioactive Waste Safely process came to an end.

The government has just undertaken a consultation on proposed amendments to the siting process for a Geological Disposal Facility.


Radiation Free Lakeland
Preventing the Lake District from becoming a nuclear sacrifice zone.


Geological Disposal Facility – Two Popular Myths

Retrievability – An understandable misconception or wishful thinking?

A GDF is not for the storage of nuclear waste. We must all understand, the aim of the facility is purely, once and for all, disposal. Other than for a number of years* whilst the facility is filled, the waste will not and can not be retrievable.

It is accepted that the containers the waste is buried in, will degrade and leak. The nuclear waste can only be contained, for the length of time to ensure that it will no longer be a risk to life, by a geological barrier. No engineered structure has ever been designed to last for a fraction of that time.

That is why the Nation must have the safest and best geological barrier to contain the facility. The clue is in the name, a GEOLOGICAL Disposal Facility.

The Legacy Waste is already here! – Misunderstanding or sleight of hand?

When the original MRWS process was proposed, it was to be constructed to hold existing waste. Time and time again it has been said that, “as Sellafield hosts 75% of the Nations existing High Level Waste, Cumbria is the best place for a GDF as we shouldn’t ship the waste around the country. It just isn’t safe”.

The NDA clearly think it is safe as they proudly boast of millions of incident free miles of nuclear waste transport since the early 60s.

If we forget the fact that waste is continually being moved into Sellafield, we must not miss the fact that the government has now moved the goalposts with MRWSII. The new proposals are for a GDF to hold new build waste from the proposed new reactors, as and when they come on line. This means that:-

• The GDF needs to be many times the size that was originally proposed

• There will be more new build waste in the GDF than the “legacy waste” already here**

• This new waste will come from all over the nation

And so……why should we accept that Cumbria will become the nation’s nuclear dustbin, just because it is politically expedient.
The waste isn’t already here and the geology is safer elsewhere!
*This would probably be around 100 years without new build and potentially 200 or more with it, to allow highest activity waste to cool
** in terms of radioactivity, but not volume. Radioactivity dictates GDF size to allow heat dispersal
Ever wondered if we should have faith in our politicians?


draft in progress.