Tuesday, 1 March 2011
To the Editor
I attended the Hinkley SSG Meeting last Friday as delegate for PCAH (Parents Concerned About Hinkley). Mark Lesinski, new head of the NDA (Nuclear Decommissioning Agency) denied that poisonous gases being discharged from the Hinkley A roof vents were causing the increase in heart attacks, strokes, brain tumours, lung, skin, kidney and liver cancers experienced in Burnham-on-Sea since 2006. His claims are incredible, as the published studies of decommissioning workers at Sellafield and in South Carolina, America, confirm what we are seeing in Hinkley downwind populations. Mr Lesinski also refused to accept that the Green Audit epidemiological studies throughout the Hinkley site’s existence, ie over the past 45 years, demonstrate beyond any doubt that radiation has been causing premature deaths and chronic illnesses among men, women and children living along the Somerset coast.
The Environment Agency also reported to the SSG and included a challenge to Green Audit’s findings of enriched uranium on the Hinkley site. Green Audit’s study included UNSCEAR’s recordings of emissions from Hinkley confirming excess discharges over many years; in fact, Hinkley and Transfynnyd nuclear sites have the worst discharges recorded.
PCAH’s attached nuclear reading list includes published studies on radiation illnesses throughout Hinkley’s lifetime, starting with an early report by Somerset Hospital doctors on childhood leukaemias published in the British Medical Journal. The Health Protection Agency and the Primary Care Trusts are also guilty of deliberately disguising the true effects of radiation exposure by only publishing studies of populations within a 25km radius of Hinkley. As most radiation illnesses fall within 5-10km of the Somerset coastline, releasing figures for the much larger population disguises the true effects.
The NDA and the Environment Agency are agents of our government, paid for by the taxpayer; their duty is to protect the public from harm from exposure to the poisonous gases regularly discharged from nuclear sites. They have not taken action to protect Somerset people from Hinkley discharges. Rather than using spurious arguments to criticise Green Audit they should be working with Dr Chris Busby and other international experts on radiation to put a stop to the nuclear industry’s cavalier attitude to safety.
Following the KIKK report showing that leukaemia incidence increases with proximity to nuclear sites, the German government has decided not to go ahead with new nuclear build. The UK should follow suit and if it does not, will risk prosecution under the European Human Rights Act.
The Environment Agency should even now be prosecuting Magnox South for corporate manslaughter following the premature deaths in Burnham-on-Sea; why don’t they? They and the NDA should urgently order the re-sealing of the Hinkley A reactors, and allow only the polymer encapsulation method of dealing with the site’s Intermediate Level Waste including fuel element debris. Currently they do not put safety first, but manipulate the SSG into accepting decommissioning and waste management methods the most profitable for the Magnox Ltd contractors, regardless of the costs in human health and lifespan.
PCAH (Parents Concerned About Hinkley)
Phone: 01278 783497
Posted by Reg Illingworth at 21:27