The Stop Hinkley Campaign has welcomed a decision by Somerset County Council to unanimously reject proposals by Magnox to transport waste from three other nuclear power sites across the UK to Hinkley Point A.
Magnox, which manages the decommissioned Hinkley Point site, had applied for permission to bring waste from Oldbury in Gloucestershire, Dungeness in Kent, and Sizewell in Suffolk to Somerset by road.
But Somerset County Councillors have voted to refuse the plans – and Magnox says it is disappointed the council has not agreed with the recommendation for approval.
Stop Hinkley spokesperson Roy Pumfrey told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “We welcome the fact that these three nuclear sites will now probably be forced to look after their own waste. This whole episode demonstrates clearly what a mess we have got ourselves into with nuclear waste.”
“Hinkley Point A is not scheduled to be finally dismantled for almost another century. My own great-grandchildren will be too old to work there even if they wanted to.”
“As Denis Healey famously said ‘when in a hole stop digging’. It’s not too late to cancel Hinkley Point C and avoid adding to this horrendous legacy.”
Under current planning conditions, only waste generated on the Hinkley A site – which is currently under construction – can be stored there.
Magnox had applied to change the rules so it could transport and temporarily store waste from other sites.
It had wanted to make a total of 46 deliveries of “intermediate waste”, such as used nuclear fuel containers, by road through Somerset.
Despite being recommended for approval, the council’s regulation committee voted unanimously to oppose the application.
Councillor Simon Coles said approving the plans would send a message that more of the Hinkley A storage facility could become home to waste from other parts of the UK.
Brian Smedley, of Bridgwater Town Council, said the plans would have “no economic, social or environmental benefit” to the town.
A spokesman for Magnox said it was considering what its next steps would be. “Magnox is disappointed that the committee has not agreed with the planning officer’s recommendation for approval,” he said. “We will continue to talk to our stakeholders and they will be kept informed about our plans.”
Hinkley Point C will have its own separate temporary waste storage facility.