Stop Moorside Letter to Jeremy Corbyn, Labour Leader

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David Lowry

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Jan 19, 2017, 6:34:55 AM1/19/17
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Stop Moorside Letter to Jeremy Corbyn, Labour Leader

Dear Jeremy Corbyn , Leader of the Labour Party, We are a volunteer group in Cumbria made up from all walks of life from scientists, tourist trade, doctors, nurses, teachers, and nuclear workers. W…


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Dear Jeremy Corbyn , Leader of the Labour Party,

We are a volunteer group in Cumbria made up from all walks of life from scientists, tourist trade, doctors, nurses, teachers, and nuclear workers. We oppose the planned Moorside nuclear development in Cumbria and feel that you may be underestimating the strength of feeling against plans for the “biggest nuclear development in Europe” on 1500 acres of greenfields and floodplain next to Sellafield.

 

Following your appearance on the Andrew Marr show the North West Evening Mail ran a poll. Unlike the actual government and industry consultations this poll has the option to say NO and 85% of the 2308 people voting so far have done just that.  There is also an ongoing 38 Degrees petition to: Stop Moorside the “biggest nuclear development in Europe.”   Despite the virtual media black on the resistance to Moorside (all media attention has been on the pylon route) this poll to Stop Moorside has attracted 11,769 signatures and rising.

Campaigners have raised funds to commission reports independent of government and industry. A report by the Edinburgh Energy and Environment Consultancy makes shocking reading Construction has so far commenced on ten AP1000s, six in the US and four in China, and another three are scheduled to begin soon. However two of the ten have been suspended, presumed abandoned, and the other eight are all running several years late and hugely over cost. Not one has ever been completed.

But the report by the EEEC (enclosed) highlights a completely separate problem: the design is intrinsically unsafe.

‘Weaker containment, less redundancy in safety systems, fewer safety features’

A design objective of the AP1000 was also to be less expensive than other designs, by using less equipment than competing designs. The design decreases the number of components, including pipes, wires, and valves. The AP1000 has: fewer safety-related valves, fewer pumps, less safety-related piping, less control cable, less seismic building volume

Westinghouse claims that this enhances safety because there are fewer active components to go wrong. In contrast the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) says that “the Westinghouse AP1000 has a weaker containment, less redundancy in safety systems, and fewer safety features than current reactors.” There is a great deal of uncertainty about how these passive approaches would actually work in practice, and since, like the EPR reactor proposed for Hinkley Point C, there are no operating AP1000s anywhere in the world, there is no operating experience to draw from.

Nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen, of US-based Fairewinds Associates, has repeatedly warned that the AP1000 design suffers from a design flaw which makes it vulnerable to a very large release of radioactivity following an accident if there were just a small failure in the steel containment vessel.

In that event gases released from the reactor would be sucked through existing ‘pinhole’ containment flaws in the AP1000 Shield Building due to the ‘chimney effect’, potentially leading to the rapid venting huge amounts of radioactivity to the environment.

Cumbria already has the intolerable burden of Sellafield. Adding to that burden with Moorside would be genocidal, the school gates at Beckermet would be just 700 metres from the “biggest nuclear development in Europe” which would be next to Sellafield already the biggest and most dangerous nuclear site in Europe.  Please, Please listen to the voices of resistance which includes many Labour voters previously encouraged by your sane approach to the nuclear industry.

Yours sincerely,

Marianne Birkby,Radiation Free Lakeland


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Friday, 23 December 2016

Reed jumps onto sinking nuclear ship at Sellafield

http://drdavidlowry.blogspot.co.uk/2016/12/reed-jumps-onto-sinking-nuclear-ship-at.html

As Copeland’s MP he has been a robust propagandist for Sellafield and the driving force behinds the plans by NuGeneration (NuGen) to develop a new nuclear power ...


The Labour Party should careful in following Jamie Reed’s local campaigning strategy if they want to retain the Copeland seat in Cumbria containing Sellafield, the giant nuclear waste plant, following his  imminent resignation. (“Corbyn critic quits as Labour MP, triggering tight byelection race,“ 22 December, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/dec/21/corbyn-critic-jamie-reed-quits-labour-mp-byelection-copeland).

Despite proclaiming to represent the local nuclear interest in Parliament, his majority has dwindled from  6320 when first elected eleven years ago  to 2564 in the 2015 General Election.

As Copeland’s MP he has been a robust propagandist for Sellafield and the driving force behinds the plans by NuGeneration (NuGen) to develop a new nuclear power station on its Moorside site directly adjacent to Sellafield.
But backing Moorside is very politically problematic. For far too long, the people of Cumbria’s prosperity has been far too dependent on all their economic growth being dependent on nuclear: the Sellafield waste complex and nearby Drigg nuclear waste surface storage site.
As local campaign group, Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment (CORE)  recently argued: “NuGen’s less than subtle ploy to boost its case for infrastructure improvements by lumping together Moorside and Sellafield decommissioning, local communities will not fool long suffering local Copeland voters who  know to their frustration that pleas to improve West Cumbria’s chronic road and rail infrastructure have fallen on deaf Government and nuclear industry ears for decades.”  (/www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/2988449/nuclear_plundering_of_the_public_purse_the_sellafield_and_moorside_billions.html)
The very notion that the Treasury should ride to the rescue of NuGen’s vested interest in a new-build project that has considerably less than full public support will be anathema to taxpayers, particularly as they witness hospital and community services in West Cumbria – whose survival is in everyone’s interest – being increasingly starved of Government support.
Additionally, the local Copeland newspaper The Whitehaven News reported on 6 December that the Moorside new nuclear plant could hamper the Lake District’s  world heritage bid. The Campaign for National Parks, Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and the National Trust have commissioned research which they say shows that short-term economic priorities – such as Moorside - are resulting inappropriate developments in national parks. (http://www.whitehavennews.co.uk/news/New-nuclear-plant-could-hamper-Lake-District-world-heritage-bid-claim-5ebf60e4-e6cb-4da3-bc6a-26f591f0f7f2-d


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