Nuclear Decision Seriously Flawed

January 9, 2008 12:00 AM

Commenting ahead of the Government's announcement on energy policy this Thursday and on the news that the Cabinet has agreed in principle to approve a new generation of nuclear power stations, Jenny Willott, Welsh Liberal Democrat MP for Cardiff Central, said:

"The Government's decision to push ahead with nuclear power stations is the UK's worst kept secret. This is a flawed decision based on a sham consultation.

"There is a real risk that focusing on new nuclear plants will draw huge amounts of public and private money away from a cleaner, greener, more sustainable and secure solution.

"The nuclear clean-up costs are so uncertain. They have already jumped by £24bn in just four years, so how on earth can private firms know how much they should set aside to pay for future clean-up costs from new nuclear power stations? Any shortfall may leave the taxpayer footing the bill.

"It is particularly telling that the Government is talking of the private sector paying for their full 'share' of the nuclear clean-up costs, and not 'all' the clean-up costs.

"There is no plan in place to deal with our existing stockpiles let alone any future waste. When fully decommissioned, Wales' two nuclear power stations will have generated enough nuclear waste to fill 60 Olympic size swimming pools.

"The Government needs to prioritise exploiting the full range of renewables, achieving greater energy conservation and supporting carbon capture and storage technology as a safe, secure and flexible way of plugging the energy gap."

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