Nuclear waste transport risks (Tor Justad)

I refer to the item headed “Politicians get ready for a fight to ensure tug provision remains” (Shetland Times, 4th December).

I would wish to draw attention to the proposal from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority to transport nuclear waste by sea from Scrabster to Barrow – a distance of over 400 miles.

This high level nuclear waste/spent fuel emanates from the Dounreay nuclear site and is intended for Sellafield – described as “the most toxic nuclear site in Europe”.

The campaigning group Highlands Against Nuclear Transport (Hant) has been campaigning since 2013 to stop this plan on the grounds that the risk to the environment, fishing, aquaculture and tourism is unacceptable.

Transporting nuclear waste by sea is opposed by environmental groups throughout the world and Hant is of the view that all nuclear waste should remain on the sites where it is produced which is in line with Scottish government policy.

Hant provided an input at a Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) seminar in Lerwick in August 2015 on “Transportation of Dounreay’s nuclear materials by rail or by sea to Sellafield – is it a safe solution for reducing the nuclear legacy in Scotland?” and was pleased to hear from SIC and Kimo representatives at that seminar that they supported Hant’s position.

The need for emergency response vessels stationed around the Northern Isles and Western Isles is important to safeguard these coasts against marine accidents and emergencies  of any kind but the need is increased by the proposal to transport nuclear waste.

As is well known, nuclear radiation knows no land or sea boundaries so this issue is of concern to all coastal communities in the Highlands and Islands.

Hant will continue to campaign on this issue and would urge individuals and interested organisations to support this campaign.

Tor Justad
Highlands Against Nuclear Transport
17 Ord Terrace,


Add Your Comment
  • ian tinkler

    • December 10th, 2015 15:44

    Tor Justad, I think this little piece of “flat earth, green lunacy” is best forgotten, it is scaremongering at its most stupid. Some simple statistics for your observation. Deaths from hazardous nuclear waste transportation accidents worldwide, nil. Deaths from atmospheric pollution worldwide (Smoke, car exhaust et al), annually, 7 million plus. UK deaths radiation poisoning, from nuclear industrial acidents all sources, last 50 years, Nil. Lives saved by irradiation (nuclear medicine, radiotherapy et al), tens of thousands each year. Demonizing the nuclear industry is about as pointless as Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) and Highlands Against Nuclear Transport. Two utterly ridiculous and unnecessary organisation, that serve no purpose whatsoever but to scare the ignorant. The fact is far more people die in transporting and commissioning wind turbines.


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