The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) are aware of media reports which continue to suggest EDF is planning to put forward imminently a Development Consent Order so as to seek permission to develop the proposed Sizewell C reactor in Suffolk. (1)
The nuclear industry is awaiting the UK Government’s response to its consultation on a new financing model for nuclear power stations, which is critical for having adequate funds to develop the site. EDF has completed four rounds of local consultation for Sizewell C, which has left regulatory agencies, local Councils and local pressure groups still seeking a considerable amount of further information, particularly as to its effects on the local environment.
It is anticipated Sizewell C will be built on a much smaller site than Hinkley Point C. The area around Sizewell has many sites of special scientific interest and it is also an area of outstanding natural beauty. This includes the Coronation Wood, adjacent to the existing nuclear reactor site, for which the local Council has given permission for it to be destroyed in readiness for the wider development of Sizewell C. This could be the start of many sensitive local ecosystems being put at risk from this large industrial development.
NFLA is keen to bring forward its real concerns on the potential negative impacts of Sizewell C to the local environment, as well as raise other technical and practical issues from such a development. It is cooperating with local groups Together Against Sizewell C (TASC), Theberton and Eastbridge Action Group on Sizewell C (TEAGS), Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth and Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG – raising concerns on the parallel proposed Bradwell B nuclear reactor) to host a public meeting in Saxmundham Market Hall on Saturday 14th March.
Amongst the high profile speakers to the public meeting are:
- Simon Barnes, the prominent environmentalist and media commentator, on the generic issues of why building Sizewell C is an environmental risk.
- Ben McFarland of the Suffolk Wildlife Trust, on why Sizewell C could threaten protected species and habitats.
- Rachel Fulcher of Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth, on the issues of nature, health and well-being and how they may be affected by Sizewell C.
- Linda Pentz Gunter of Beyond Nuclear International, on nuclear power and the systemic harm it can have on animals and nature, looking at these issues from the international perspective.
- Pete Wilkinson, Chair of Together Against Sizewell C, speaking on behalf of TASC and Theberton and Eastbridge Action Group on Sizewell (TEAGS), on what are the other non-environmental risks in developing Sizewell C.
- Professor Andy Blowers, Chair of Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group, on Sizewell C and Bradwell B and the potential effects from climate change if these sites are built. (2)
The meeting is being opened out to county, district, town and parish councillors, local environmental groups and the general public through a registration process. (3)
All the participating groups have extensive concerns around the construction of Sizewell C and the meeting gives an opportunity for local councillors in particular to be more aware of them.
NFLA English Forum Chair, Councillor David Blackburn said:
“With new nuclear in a state of some flux and financial uncertainty, it remains important to consider as well the profound environmental consequences that building a new nuclear site in east Suffolk could have. This is an excellent opportunity for local councillors and those concerned by the development of Sizewell C to understand the issues better and to find out why an increasing amount of people believe this reactor should not be built. I encourage local councillors in particular to attend.”
A spokesperson for Together Against Sizewell C added:
“TASC is delighted NFLA are coming to East Suffolk with such an excellent team of knowledgeable speakers. We are pleased that so many people are registering their interest in attending it.”
Ends – for more information please contact Sean Morris, NFLA Secretary, on 00 44 (0)161 234 3244.
Notes for Editors:
(1) Business Green 17th February 2020
(2) NFLA joint seminar with TASC, TEAGS, FOE Suffolk Coastal and BANNG, Saxmundham Market Hall, East Suffolk, Saturday 14th March, 10.45am – 1.30pm
(3) To register for the seminar download the flyer and post or email it to the NFLA Secretary using the details on the form. This is to ensure room capacity requirements are maintained.