Cumbria's nuclear waste debate rolls on

Sellafield Britain needs to find a site for a long-term underground store for nuclear waste

Last night's Cumbria nuclear waste storage programme provoked a big response so here are some thoughts on your feedback.

We didn't set out to examine the environmental and safety issues surrounding the nuclear store on this occasion.

You may recall a 30 minute documentary when I travelled to Finland looking at precisely those issues last year - and caught up with expert opinion on both sides.

This time we decided to look at the pressures facing councillors who have such a critical decision ahead of them, given the amount of money that both the government and the nuclear industry put into the region both in wages and community projects.

I asked the question: "So is this just a local business doing the right thing, being socially responsible and supporting their community? Or is the relationship all a little too close?"

We pointed out that some of the councillors have previous connections with the nuclear industry and help hand out funds from the industry to local people.

Balanced views

We asked if they were able to set aside this pressure and take an independent, balanced view.

Nuclear storage diagram Radioactive waste contained in canisters would be buried beneath Cumbria

A representative from Friends of the Earth described relationships as being "too cosy".

The councillors and process were defended by the local MP, a statement from Cumbria Council, and one of those directly involved.

We fully accept that this is just one issue facing the decision makers - but one we thought might merit a closer look.

Our colleagues on BBC Look North, BBC Radio Cumbria and BBC News Online will keep you up to date with the outcome of tomorrow's meetings.

More from the Inside Out programme can be found here including the iPlayer watch again.

Chris Jackson Article written by Chris Jackson Chris Jackson Presenter, Inside Out, North East & Cumbria

Inside Out returns for a new series in 2015

Inside Out returns for a new series in 2015 but Chris Jackson's blog is coming to an end and he can now be found on social media.

Read full article


This entry is now closed for comments

Jump to comments pagination
  • rate this

    Comment number 1.

    The decision will be based upon the hard evidence but that hard evidence suggests that there is little prospect of any economic recovery in Cumbria without the nuclear industry. History tells us that he who pays the piper calls the tune. This tune will echo for generations as will the thought that Cumbria County Councillors know the price of everything but the value of nothing.

  • rate this

    Comment number 3.

    I think the comment made by Dr Blogh was a bit strange that it is a UK problem and shouldnt be dumped on the people of Cumbria, that is such a Nimby attitude. It follows that the problem of housing isnt a London problem but that doesnt mean we should concrete over the lake district to meet the housng needs. If Cumbria has the geology then thats where it should be built, we are all in it together

  • rate this

    Comment number 4.

    Perhaps the best place would actually be the they don't want HS2 in their backyard,this would be ideal as it will be under the backyard,...... out of sight out of mind as they would like HS2 to be.

  • rate this

    Comment number 5.

    Again to echo #3 'It is a UK problem and shouldn't be dumped on the people of Cumbria' - Does that mean the waste should be spread pro rata around the UK? It needs to go somewhere.
    Also, the north-south divide is often bemoaned, and yet the prospect of thousands of permanant high skilled STEM jobs in the north commutable from a series of 'isolated' communities is no temptation whatsoever?

  • rate this

    Comment number 6.

    On the contrary Cumbria County Councillors know the value of protecting the Lake District National Park and the extensive business and residential investment in the area. The blot on the landscape that is Sellafield should not be allowed to spread its radioactive filth over what is often called "the jewel in Englands crown". Bury Sellafield the "Nuclear slum".


Comments 5 of 8



BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.