Concerns over armed trains from Caithness to Cumbria
Published: 24th May 2012 10:20:55
Moving nuclear material from Scotland to England would see trains travelling on a rail line under armed escort from 2012 to 2020, campaigners fear.
The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) proposes moving fuel and other radioactive material from Dounreay to Sellafield for treatment.
The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) said the plan could lead to up to 110 shipments by rail.
The NDA declined to detail security plans, but said safety would be key.
The authority said spent fuel and nuclear materials had been transported safely over a number of decades from Dounreay on Scotland's far north coast to other sites.
NFLA's concerns are among newly-published responses to the NDA's consultation on its plan to start transporting material classed as "exotics" to Sellafield in 2014 or 2015.
The material - which includes fuel containing highly-enriched uranium - is separate from tonnes of breeder material to be moved by rail from Dounreay to Sellafield later this year.
The NDA's preferred option is to transport the "exotics" by road or rail to Sellafield where there are existing facilities, or ones being built, to handle it.
For the material to stay at Doureay, storage sites will have to be upgraded or replaced within the next 15 years.
PDF download Consultation responses[133.77 KB]
Most computers will open PDF documents automatically, but you may need Adobe Reader
The NDA has said that it would take eight to 10 years to design and build the necessary facilities.
Dounreay, an experimental nuclear power site, is being demolished and cleaned up.
Copeland Borough Council, Cumbria County Council, Highland Council, Orkney Islands Council and Shetland Islands Council also responded to the consultation.
NFLA and Shetland Islands Council oppose the moving of nuclear material and want it to be stored at Dounreay.
On security, the NFLA said: "It appears likely that the 30-60 or so transports from Dounreay to Sellafield would need to be accompanied by armed police for security reasons.
"Added to the 50 rail journeys to transport breeder fuel to Sellafield this is going to mean constant armed shipments between now and 2020 travelling the length of Scotland."
The NDA said it had noted the comment, adding: "However, NDA cannot discuss the detailed security arrangements for the transfer of DFR breeder, spent fuels and nuclear materials from Dounreay to Sellafield."
In another response to comments to the consultation, the authority said: "The transport of nuclear material is a tried and tested, safe method which has been in place over a number of decades.
"All movements will be in compliance with UK safety and security regulations."
A decision on the preferred option for the "exotics" is expected later this year, the NDA said.
At 19:44:20 in EnglandThe lawyer for former N-Dubz singer and X Factor judge Tulisa Contostavlos has asked magistrates for an assault charge against her to be dropped.
At 19:43:34 in PoliticsThe UK Independence Party has suspended a council candidate featured in its latest election broadcast for sharing "repellent" opinions on Twitter.
At 19:30:52 in EnglandTwo men have been jailed for abusing young boys over three decades at two North East residential schools.
At 19:25:46 in WalesA new maternity unit has opened at Bronglais Hospital in Aberystwyth as part of changes to neonatal services.
At 19:21:42 in HeadlinesAn exceptionally bright supernova that baffled scientists has been explained.
At 19:21:07 in SportDavid Pipe has left Newport County after coming to an agreement to end his contract with the League Two club.
At 19:01:51 in BusinessBankers' bonuses are not what they were.
At 19:01:04 in ScotlandPolice are appealing for witnesses after new information came to light over a sexual assault in Polmont.
At 18:57:24 in HeadlinesKenyan MPs are debating a proposal to make it a criminal offence to address an official incorrectly at a state function.
At 18:56:18 in SportChelsea midfielder Ramires will miss the rest of the Premier League season after he accepted a charge of violent conduct.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Concerns over armed trains from Caithness to Cumbria [Online] (Updated 24th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1430628/Concerns-over-armed-trains-from-Caithness-to-Cumbria [Accessed 24th Apr 2014]
News In Other Categories
David Pipe has left Newport County after coming to an agreement to end his contract with the League Two club.
The UK Independence Party has suspended a council candidate featured in its latest election broadcast for sharing "repellent" opinions on Twitter.
Director Peter Jackson has changed the title of the final film in his Hobbit trilogy from There and Back Again to The Battle of the Five Armies.
Ten candidates will be vying for three European parliament seats in Northern Ireland, it has been confirmed.
A new maternity unit has opened at Bronglais Hospital in Aberystwyth as part of changes to neonatal services.
Kenyan MPs are debating a proposal to make it a criminal offence to address an official incorrectly at a state function.