HANT BULLETIN: FEBRUARY 2020
Welcome to all our Supporters – a Bulletin at last !
You may have wondered what had happened to HANT as there has been a long gap since our last Bulletin
One of the reasons is that the usual author of the Bulletin is Tor Justad (Chair of HANT) is retired but for the last 6 months has been working almost full time with 3 others on contract for the Scottish Government International Development to review sales and promotion of Fair Trade products in Scotland. Thankfully the review is now finished and will be published on the Scottish Government website next month
HANT has continued to be represented at a variety of nuclear forums and other events and the Chair has continued as a Public Member of the Dounreay
Stakeholder Group – the independent Group which is set up to provide scrutiny of the Dounreay site
The Chairman of the DSG has recently stated that he thinks the planned closure of the site by 2033 is not achievable and is unrealistic
There has been less news coming from Dounreay and less nuclear transport but radioactive particles continue to be found on Sandside beach, there have been radioactive leaks on the site and now there is discussion about attracting the manufacture of SMR’s (Small Modular Reactors) at Dounreay and continuing to test nuclear submarine reactors at HMS Vulcan which is due to close by 2033
HMS Vulcan will also be sending at least 12 shipments of waste by rail from Dounreay to Sellafield
So still many issues to campaign on as the nuclear industry won’t accept that the future for energy in in renewables and not nuclear, which is not carbon free, creates waste with no solution to its disposal, requires uranium which destroys the environment and local communities and risks its bi -products being used to produce nuclear weapons
Also, the climate crisis campaigns have included opposition to carbon fuels but has also resulted in the nuclear industry (and other organisations) claiming that nuclear is carbon free and should form part of an energy mix
HANT will actively oppose these positions and argue that the future is in renewables and not in nuclear of any kind including SMR’s
Bu HANT does need to attract more active Committee Members who can help to plan our future campaigns
This Bulletin will provide an update of current and planned HANT activity and HANT acknowledges support from the Schiehallion Fund, Edge Fund and the Polden Puckham Charitable Trust, Andrew Wainwright Rust and our own crowd funding
NEED FOR NEW COMMITTEE MEMBERSs
HANT relies for all its campaigning work on a very small group of Committee Members – at present there are 4 of us – all with different skills from book-keeping to campaigning and much else
But 2 are planning to stand down due to work and voluntary commitments and they have also served o the Committee for several years and our thanks are due for all their engagement
SO, we need new Committee Members – you don’t have to live in Ross-shire or near Inverness as we meet by Skype – usually bi-monthly for 1 hour only
And although HANT’s original aim related to the nuclear transports from Dounreay to Sellafield we are also keen to support renewable development as an alternative to nuclear and we also recognise the links between nuclear power and nuclear weapons so support any campaigns to abolish nuclear weapons
So if you support all or any of these campaign issues please get in touch with Tor Justad our Chair who’s e mail is email@example.com or the HANT e mail which is firstname.lastname@example.org
EVENTS /ACTIONS: 2019 / 2020
Letters to the Press
There have been a number of Letters to the Editor, mainly in the Press & Journal related to nuclear power and recently the potential of HMS Vulcan at Dounreay being used in the future for testing new nuclear reactors and to build SMR’s (Small Modular Reactors)
SMR’s are another example of the desperation of the nuclear industry to continue in the future at a time when most countries in the world are abandoning nuclear
If a fraction of what is spent on nuclear had been spent on renewables, the UK and Scotland could be the world leader in tidal and wave power
BEIS Nuclear Forum: London: March 2019
The Chair attended a meeting of the BEIS (Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy) NGO Forum in March 2019 in London
Topics discussed included radioactive waste management, emergency planning and siting of nuclear power stations
The Emergency Planning issue is of particular interest to HANT and new regulations place a greater responsibility on local authorities so HANT will be following this up with Highland Council and other Councils along the rail and sea routes from Dounreay to Sellafield
The minutes include the following:
“Tor Justad asked if full account was taken to cutbacks to all local authorities? As emergency planning officers often don’t exist, particularly in remote locations such as the Highlands “
Sean Morris (Secretary: NFLA (Nuclear Free Local Authorities – who spoke at a HANT AGM in 2018) said:
“There was concern that in an emergency, misinformation could lead to mass panic and as a result emergency planning should be increased in geographical scope - preparation is always kept to very small communities. There should also be consideration of information that should be provided for the public.
DSG (Dounreay Stakeholder Group): September 2019
The Chair attends the DSG as a Co-opted Public Member and uses the opportunities provided to quiz Dounreay staff on all issues of concern to the general public – this includes activity on the site but also promised developments such as the use of the multi-user Georgemas Junction freight facility, which to date has only been used for nuclear shipments
Film Screening Cromarty Film Festival: The Atom: A Love Affair: Directed by Vicki Lesley : December 2019
HANT was represented at the premiere of this film at the Cromarty Film Festival in December 2019
The film features a lot of archive footage with interviews with those who developed nuclear power and tells the West’s love/hate relationship with nuclear power over 70 years
It reveals how the post/war romantic fantasy of an atom/powered future developed into the stormy on/off relationship still; playing out today
HANT was in touch with the Director when the film was being made as she had made an earlier film about Dounreay which HANT showed at a film screening in Muir of Ord
HANT will plan to show the new film at a future HANT film screening
Inverness College UHI Fresher’s Fayre: October 2019
This has become an annual event for HANT which was started by an earlier Committee Member
The Fayre is an event designed for first year students to give them an idea of what organisations they can be involved with in and around Inverness
There were over 100 organisations represented and HANT was next to a couple of organisations with environmental aims which included the local branch of Extinction Rebellion
The HANT stall included our colourful pop up banner, HANT leaflets and car stickers and the HANT Petition which “calls on the British Government and the NDA (Nuclear Decommissioning Authority) to halt the transport of nuclear waste from Dounreay to Sellafield by sea and rail and highly enriched uranium to the US by air which as we believe it poses unacceptable risks to communities and the environment”.
The air transport has since been completed and over 70 people signed the Petition so an event well worth attending
ONR NGO Engagement Forum: London: November 2019
HANT was represented at the ONR (Office for Nuclear Regulation) NGO Forum in London in November 2019
The meeting included an update from the Chief Nuclear Inspector, Mark Foy which included and update on REPIR (Radiation (Emergency Preparedness and Public Information) Regulations 2019 regulations
Tor Justad asked:
2.15. TJ asked MF if he expects local authorities to have sufficient knowledge of the new REPPIR regulations.
2.16. MF responded by advising that he would expect local authorities to be building up their knowledge of the new REPPIR 2019 regulations, but Mark Foy acknowledged that the regulations placed unfamiliar obligations on local authorities, and he recognised it was a big shift for them. MF also confirmed following a question from Chris Wilson (CW) that ONR would give support and advice to local authorities during the period of transition, as they implemented the new regulations.
And also, a question about the nuclear reactors being decommissioned at Rosyth:
2.17. TJ asked for an update on activities at Rosyth.
2.18. MF confirmed that work to begin dismantling submarines had commenced and that ONR was pleased with the progress being made.
Other topics covered included ONR Enforcement Actions, New build activities, climate change, ONR Regulation at Sellafield and ONR’s relationship to DNSR (Defence Nuclear Safety Regulations)
All ONR NGO Forum Meeting Minutes are published on the ONR website: onr.org.uk and the Search for Minutes of ONR NGO Forums
NFLA (Nuclear Free Local Authorities) Seminar: Glasgow: January 2020
HANT was represented at the NFLA Seminar which included presentations on : latest position at Hunterston B nuclear power station where numerous cracks have been found I reactor cores, nuclear emergency planning, proposal for a National Energy Company and Energy Development Agency and the campaign against bank’s investment in nuclear weapons systems,
EVENTS PLANNED 2020:
DSG (Dounreay Stakeholder Group): AGM and Public Meeting, Thurso: 11 March 2020
Tor Justad will be attending this meeting as a Co-opted Public Member and will report back to the next following HANT Committee Meeting
DSG provides an opportunity to question the site operators DSRL (Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd) about activities on the site including nuclear transport – also can question MOD/ HMS Vulcan representatives and the nuclear regulators, including SEPA (Scottish Environmental protection Agency)
HANT AGM / Public Meeting: Emergency Planning: April 2020
HANT is planning to hold its next AGM in April in Inverness which will focus on Emergency Planning and plans to invite 2 speakers including Sean Morris (Secretary NFLA) who was previously an Emergency Planning Officer for 7 years with Leeds City Council
Further details will be posted on our facebook page, press releases and notice to all Supporter Members
Please come along if you live close enough – HANT welcomes anyone along who supports its aims or wishes to question our campaign – only Member Supporters can vote
Possible joint event with Cromarty Peace Group and possible film screening
HANT has in the past co-operated with the Cromarty Peace Group including a demonstration against nuclear trains at Inverness Station in September 2018
The demonstration came one month after a train carrying nuclear waste skipped a red signal near Kingussie as the Caledonian Sleeper service was heading north.
Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch & Strathspey MP Drew Hendry echoed his sentiments, claiming it was completely unacceptable.
He welcomed the news that residents across the region were continuing to take a strong stance on the matter.
He said: “Disappointingly, the incident at Kingussie reaffirms the dangers of operating nuclear facilities and moving toxic nuclear waste through communities, and for DRS to say that there was no risk is simply not acceptable.
“People across the Highlands have been clear; they do not want nuclear waste transported through their communities and I am sure this peaceful demonstration will be very well supported. This sort of incident cannot be allowed to happen again.
“Nuclear not only poses a threat to our environment and our communities, it is also set to cost consumers and taxpayers a fortune.
“Its high time the Tories put an end to their obsession with nuclear and got behind the opportunity to achieve sustainable economic and jobs growth by harnessing Scotland’s enormous renewable energy potential.”
HANT Leaflets and car stickers /Website / Facebook (and Chair’s Facebook https://www.facebook.com/tor.justad.9/ ) :
HANT is about to reprint its leaflet and copies can be made available to Supporters for use at relevant meetings or events and car stickers are also available
HANT’s website is still active: hant.co.uk – so anyone can look at it to read about HANT’s aims, the views of HANT’s Committee Members and a long list of FAQs’
HANT is also on facebook : https://www.facebook.com/HighlandsAgainstNuclearTransport/ but we have been struggling to keep this updated so if anyone could take this voluntary role on please get in touch
HANT’s current Chair Tor Justad also posts a lot of nuclear material on his own facebook (www.facebook.com/tor.justad9) and anyone is welcome to read the posts
TO CONTACT HANT: email@example.com
This Bulletin is longer than usual as it covers a longer period, but we hope that it will provide an update on HANT’s activities in 2019 and planned activities in 2020
We look forward to an active year with the continued interest of our Supporter Members and the current and future HANT Committee
With all good wishes
HANT Committee : February 2020