SEVENTY lorry loads of nuclear waste from Oldbury power station in South Gloucestershire could be moved to Hinkley Point A to be processed and stored under plans put forward by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).
They say that the move makes financial sense and that it is safe.
However West Somerset councillors are being urged to object to the plans to move 144 tonnes of the nuclear waste between 2020 to 2022. The district council has argued that extra nuclear waste should not be brought into the area.
Members are due to discuss the plan tomorrow (Wednesday) and the officers’ report to members says only waste in-situ within Hinkley A should be stored on site.
The report adds: “... aligning with a condition placed on previous planning decision by SCC which states that: 'There shall be no radioactive waste imported from outside Hinkley A site; and only the waste (currently classed as Intermediate Level radioactive waste) that is in situ within the Hinkley A site shall be stored on the site.”
A spokesman for Stop Hinkley, which campaigns against nuclear power in the South-West, said: “We think all of the nuclear waste should stay close to the site and surface.
“We don't believe that the industry should be moving nuclear waste around as it increases the risk of dosage to the public.
“When dealt with on site there is a risk to workers but it is all relative as they are being paid and know the dangers.”
Tim Taylor, leader of West Somerset Council, said: “Any nuclear waste has its risks, and it is also reputational risks as well – risk to tourism and prospects and so on, so we object to any nuclear waste coming from outside.”
The NDA said using fewer locations would help reduce overall costs, environmental impacts and timescales of decommissioning.
Ben Hamilton, head of stakeholder relations at the NDA, said: “Clearly, safety and security are the biggest priority that we have in terms of all of our planning work.
“We have made it very, very clear that we wouldn’t carry out any of these proposals if we thought there was going to be a significant increase in risk.”
The NDA made the proposals in a paper published last November regarding their preferred options for dealing with nuclear waste.
The paper is under consultation and comments can be made until January 31.
There are plans to build a new store at Hinkley A for the storage of intermediate level waste and a new dissolution plant to process fuel element debris.