A group of 19 environmental charities have co-written a letter to the government department, BEIS, demanding that they exclude National parks and other designated areas, such as AONBs, from the search for a site to bury the nation’s nuclear waste. The letter highlights the same concerns which Cumbria Trust has recently expressed in a letter to Lord Henley of BEIS, that the polyhalite mine in the North York Moors National Park should not be used as a green light for major development in a designated area. Indeed, as we explained in the letter, the polyhalite mine was able to overcome this major hurdle by demonstrating that it was the only possible site in the UK for that purpose, therefore critically, it was able to show that there were no alternative non-designated sites. This exception could not apply to burial of nuclear waste in a National Park, since there are alternative sites without such protection.
We are very pleased to see the National Trust with its 5 million members as one of the major charity signatories to the letter. The National Trust own the key land which includes much of the Ennerdale area, and we have confirmed with them that they hold this particular land inalienably, that is to say that it cannot be compulsorily purchased. Friends of the Lake District, which has joined Cumbria Trust as a member organisation, are another signatory. They are taking a very proactive role to ensure that the Lake District and other designated areas are excluded and we look forward to working alongside them.
The letter can be found here: “Environmental charities call for Government not to undermine National Parks with careless words”