Sellafield, formerly known as Windscale, Britain's largest nuclear facility is being decommissioned. The cost continues to escalate with the latest estimate reaching £67.5 billion.
Sellafield in the north west of England is a nuclear reprocessing site. Work undertaken at the site includes a process which separates the uranium, plutonium, and fission products from spent nuclear fuel. The site is located close to the Cumbrian village of Seascale, which lies on the coast of the Irish Sea.
Decommissioning work is ongoing but Monday the BBC reported that the cost for this work had risen to a staggering £67.5bn. That may sound a huge sum of money but the bad news is that is not a final total. The costs continue to rise.
In November the BBC reported that the decommissioning work at Sellafield was to undergo a 'value for money' investigation. The UK National Audit Office (NAO) early in November reported it had found run-down storage buildings at the facility and had assessed the cost as already over budget. Costs were 'spiraling' out of control and work was behind schedule. Importantly there were safety concerns.
Safety and cost continue to raise concerns.
The UK coalition government is keen to invest in nuclear energy. As a small country, likely to get smaller if the Scots vote for independence, Britain has nowhere near enough natural resources to sustain and supply the country's energy needs.
The UK government gave the green light for the controversial practice of fracking to re-start in December. Fracking had been put on hold following earthquakes in the Blackpool area and safety concerns. Fracking alone though will not be enough to solve the UKs energy problems, even if it is successful.
Many countries turned away from nuclear development after the devastating Fukushima plant earthquake problems. They highlighted all too clearly what can go wrong.
Tuesday a House of Commons, Committee of Public Accounts, published an updated report. It is available to purchase at TSO. It begins with background information,
'Nuclear Decommissioning Authority: Managing Risk At Sellafield (HC 746)' examines the work of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (the Authority) which was set up in 2005 with the specific remit to tackle the UK's nuclear legacy; and confirms that the Authority believes it now has a credible plan for decommissioning Sellafield.
As the UK continues to experience a range of problems regarding the decommissioning of Sellafield Tuesday there was more news on its latest nuclear development plans. The BBC reports that Centrica is pulling out of a deal to build four new nuclear reactors in the UK, leaving EDF, the French state-owned utility, in control. The bad news is that EDF will now have to look to other investors. It has already approached.
We all know that China cannot be trusted. Harsh words? Yes but true. So many health and safety issues in Western products stem from China. Broken or inappropriate parts are the tip of the iceberg. Are we mad or just totally desperate to even consider trusting China with UK nuclear safety?
The fact that the project is French orientated should cause concerns. It once again proves that Cameron's promise of an EU referendum is meaningless. We have been tied hook, line and sinker to the EU, like it or lump it folks. If you believe there will be a fair unbiased referendum held then you are a fool.
It is nothing more nor less than an election ploy. What would make you believe that in the event of such a referendum any Tory government would abide by the result? They are after all a Party littered with broken promises.
Based in Yorkshire, in the middle of the UK, almost, this blogger offers her own unique perspective on life in GB
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