Time for a new antinuclear movement
AFTER the UK Government’s rejection of the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon, I was expecting an announcement about nuclear energy; not surprised but inwardly angry and frustrated by the politicians’ obsession with nuclear energy when it soon came.
These expensive to run in the long term, hazardous and cumbersome old-style power plants should have been seen as outmoded as long ago as the 1980s. Germany has stopped building nuclear power stations, Japan has had a scare with Fukishima – so a Japanese company aims to build one on Anglesey. Russia had Chernobyl, but Russia was and is a dictatorship. France carries on in its usual way and EDF – a company owned by the French Government – is building a nuclear power station at Hinckley Point, partially funded by the UK taxpayer. Wales is set to be surrounded by these monstrous plants.
When will those who support and promote nuclear energy address the problem of radioactive waste – the inevitable byproduct of their pet schemes? We hear of a “‘halflife” of 1,000 years for this stuff. We haven’t known a period of political stability anywhere like that long. And what about the effects of climate change, with most of these plants near the coast? Then there’s the possible end of archaeology. What if the whereabouts of the dumping grounds for this stuff are lost? Nuclear is not “green”.
We will surely be cursed by future generations for our selfish, backward-looking reliance on these plants. There has to be another way and that has to be renewable sources of energy. The Swansea Bay scheme would be a pioneering and forwardlooking enterprise and a triumph for Wales in showing the way ahead in energy production. Meantime, I’m sure we can find ways of being less profligate in our use of energy.
Thousands march against Brexit. If only more would rebel against nuclear power schemes. Time, I think, for a new anti-nuclear movement.
> American circus. Picture taken by Nathaniel Jenkins