DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE
Review of the Siting Process for a Geological Disposal Facility February 2014
i.e. Our plan to bury uranium under working class ghettos
‘The Government is committed to delivering a GDF as the safest and most secure means of managing our higher-activity waste in the long term. The Government favours an approach to siting a GDF that is based on engaging and collaborating with communities who are willing to participate. During 2013 the Department of Energy and Climate Change conducted a public consultation on the geological disposal facility (GDF) siting process. The proposals in the consultation aimed to empower communities around the country to engage in the GDF process with more confidence
In general, the proposal for a revised siting process was to provide more information at an earlier stage in the process on issues such as geology and socio-economic impacts. It was also proposed that any community that became involved in the process should have an ongoing Right of Withdrawal, with a final test of public support involving the local population directly. All of this would represent an additional layer of engagement – adding to rather than replacing the statutory planning and regulatory processes that must apply to a development of this nature
The 719 responses were broken down into 12 categories of respondent: Academia and Learned Societies; Individuals and Society (74%); International Governments and Crown Dependencies; International Organisations (include Waste Management organisations); Local Government; Local NGO (Non-Governmental Organisations); National NGO (Non-Governmental Organisations); Not Stated; MPs, Councillors and Political Parties.
Question 1: Do you agree that a test of public support should be taken before the representative authority loses the Right of Withdrawal? If so, what do you think would be the most appropriate means of testing public support, and when should it take place? If you do not agree with the need for such a test, please explain why.
3.1. The majority of respondents to this question agreed or partly agreed that there should be a test of public support before a potential host community gave up its Right of Withdrawal from the siting process for a GDF, although opinions were mixed on how it should be carried out. The main arguments of those who agreed with a test of public support were that this would ensure that the siting process was democratic and that it would support decision making by local authorities.
Of those commenting on the specific means of testing public support, many expressed the view that this should be through a referendum – although a number of these responses recognised the potential risk of bias in the event of low turnout. A few suggested that opinion polls or surveys would be more appropriate, as they would be less prone to the impacts of a low turnout
A few respondents to this question proposed that public support should be tested over a county or larger area, in order to take account of the wider impacts of hosting a GDF. A few respondents proposed that support should be tested at the parish or district level, taking the view that the community closest to the chosen site would be the most directly affected by it.
Opinions were divided on where local decision making authority should lie. A few respondents agreed with the proposal that the district council should be the ‘representative authority’, for the reasons of subsidiarity and localism that the consultation stated. On the other hand, some respondents felt that county councils were best placed to represent the community and hold the Right of Withdrawal and / or felt that Parish Councils should have a role to play in the decision making process beyond that proposed in the consultation document. A few respondents felt that there should be a direct role for local residents in the decision making process.
A few respondents commented on the proposed membership of the ‘Steering Group’ and questioned the involvement of Government and / or the developer, citing a vested interest and a potential conflict of interest.
Some responses cited the importance of independence – whether in the recruitment of the chair of the Steering Group, the peer reviewing of technical reports, or the involvement of regulators to provide professional opinions to communities during the ‘Learning Phase’ – in ensuring trust and confidence in decisions that are made.
Some respondents expressed the view that geological suitability was the most important issue in considering a site for a GDF, and that a national screening exercise should be undertaken at the start of any siting process, to focus on potential areas of suitable geology before seeking volunteers. A few respondents called for nationally designated, or environmentally sensitive areas (for example, National Parks and Areas of Outstanding National Beauty) to be ruled out as potentially suitable areas from the outset.
A few respondents advocated an independent peer review of geological data, as an essential part of gaining the trust of potential host communities.
Some respondents were concerned that the provision of community benefits constituted a bribe by Government. A few respondents were concerned that this could mean that economically deprived areas may see their future prosperity as being solely dependent on hosting a GDF. However, a few respondents felt that community benefits were an important reflection of the service that the host community would be undertaking for the nation and noted that community benefits are an accepted part of the planning process.
The issue of planning blight (potential effects on property prices) was raised by a few respondents. Linked to this, a few respondents were concerned about potential loss of business income from tourism and businesses leaving the area because of the siting of a GDF. Some suggestions were made that the community benefits fund should be used to address this’.
IT’S LIKE READING GEORGE ORWELL
719 responses = let us see them.
Engaging and collaborating with communities = bribing idiots.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change = nuclear energy will save mankind.
Ongoing Right of Withdrawal = if the local council can not be bribed, let’s directly bribe ‘the people’.
Representative authority loses the Right of Withdrawal? = which will happen if they do not kow tow.
Waste Management organisations = politicians with links.
Opinion polls or surveys would be more appropriate = get the answer you want.
‘Steering Group’ = propaganda co-ordinators.
Independent peer review of geological data = a friendly scientist who agrees with your result.
Nationally designated, or environmentally sensitive areas = will not be buried under the Duchy of Cornwall, near Cheltenham, or anywhere near upper class, Tory voting, areas.
Some respondents were concerned that provision of community benefits constituted a bribe by Government = that’s the plan, stupid.
The issue of planning blight (potential effects on property prices) was raised by a few respondents = don’t worry, we are going to dump it where housing prices can not get any lower, in places in the north of England, not far from where the rubbish comes from (Cumbria), in places of high unemployment, with poor social services and schools, with plenty of prisons; where helicopters patrol nightly; where people can no longer afford fish and chips; where posh Etonians do not tread; where the writing on the walls is of despair; where councils are self-serving yes men and women; where the homeless huddle in doorways and few care, as long as it’s not them.
From Cumbria to South Yorkshire.
Bury it in a working class sink hole.
lenin nightingale 2015