Unite, Britain's biggest union, has welcomed today’s (Thursday 12 September) announcement from the government that it will launch a new consultation to address the options for managing radioactive waste.
The new consultation is crucial in finding a suitable location for a geological disposal facility (GDF), to house the UK’s nuclear waste.
Unite national officer for energy Kevin Coyne said: "Britain has been searching for a national waste repository for over 30 years. In the meantime Sellafield workers have the responsibility of looking after most of this radioactive waste.
"Cumbria county council’s decision earlier this year to pull out of the search for a waste repository was a short-sighted decision because it does not magic the waste away.
"The launch of a new consultation by the government so quickly is to be welcomed. There now needs to be a thorough and timely consultation but we cannot afford to lose any more time. Britain and the workers at Sellafied need answers to how best we deal with our nuclear waste."
The Sellafield workers campaign launched a three point plan to sustain and develop 10,000 jobs at the site which are crucial to Cumbria and the UK's economic success.
Over the next five years Sellafield will generate over £1 billion of revenue for the local supply chain. Workers are calling for:
- A new nuclear power station at Sellafield
- To explore the potential to re-use existing plutonium stocks at Sellafield for future energy generation
- The government to work with those councils in Cumbria that did back the proposal to proceed with further studies into a geological disposal facility for radioactive waste.
Contact Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931 315
Notes to editors:
- Unite is Britain and Ireland's largest trade union with 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.