I note with interest that the funding of new nuclear is once again in the news and open to speculation in the forthcoming budget. As fascinating as it may seem surely it is not a question of how to fund new nuclear but why would any government in its right mind want our country to invest in such an expensive old outmoded form of electricity production. Which leaves hundreds of tonnes of nuclear waste for future generations to guard and keep under vigilance for many hundreds of years, whilst never forgetting the same nuclear waste is also available for use to create nuclear weapons.
It is not just the financial cost, but considering new nuclear shows a total lack of consideration for future generations and the planet which we all share.
It is argued that power from nuclear produces little CO2, this is absolutely inconsequential when you consider all the drawbacks of new nuclear. Tinkering around with nuclear power, which is the most expensive form of electricity production there is, and by not considering the total lack of sustainability, not only from the building of the plant, ( just look at the devastation at Hinkley Point C ) but the massive environmental damage which comes about from mining yellow cake (uranium) in other countries. Uranium processing, cleaning and then exporting it here using different forms of transportation. Finally using it to produce electricity with its radio-nuclide’s going either into the air or out to sea.
Sadly over the past 60 years Sellafield and Drigg have housed the nuclear waste end product. This is costing billions of pounds to clean up. Nothing about new nuclear is worth the price we pay either in hard cash or the damage it causes to the world wide environment. All in all nuclear power generation and all it encompasses is a filthy business from start to finish, and I am ashamed that our country is not, and has not, been supporting all the innovative people and businesses who have needed backing and incentive, to enable them to lead the world in clean affordable electricity generated by sustainable means.
Why are the Government not considering funding all the ways and means there are to reduce the need for electricity and reduce usage? For instance why are we not using LED lighting in every street light countrywide, and the list is endless. Come a day when electric vehicles become a back up to a transformed national grid, and homes and businesses create their own power and use it for their own heating, lighting and recharging their own vehicles. This is just waiting for the Government to enable and encourage this transformation.
If successive governments had planned for other ways to produce electricity which leave no nuclear waste and little or no CO2 , whilst also planning to reduce electricity use and allocated as much hard cash into research and development for all forms of clean and green renewables as it has into new nuclear, we may not be facing the frightening doomsday scenario of Climate emergency. To our shame we are leaving climate change and nuclear waste for future generations to manage. Therefore we ask Government to consider an urgent review of energy policy which must include a speedy transition to a fully sustainable future which excludes new nuclear and which protects the human rights of the child and the unborn child.