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'Unite to fight' N-power threat

PUBLISHED: 18:43 13 October 2008 | UPDATED: 21:31 05 July 2010

A CALL has gone out for communities to work together to mobilise opposition in the face of plans for new nuclear power stations.

It came as about 100 people attended a meeting in Leiston Film Theatre organised by Communities Against Nuclear Expansion (CANE), set up locally to oppose plans to build a Sizewell C.

A CALL has gone out for communities to work together to mobilise opposition in the face of plans for new nuclear power stations.

It came as about 100 people attended a meeting in Leiston Film Theatre organised by Communities Against Nuclear Expansion (CANE), set up locally to oppose plans to build a Sizewell C.

British Energy wants to build two new reactors to form the new power station, at a cost of £6billion. Work could start in 2013.

The meeting heard from a range of speakers that nuclear power was not a suitable option for electricity supply because of the risk of accidents and terrorism and because renewable technologies offered a better future.

Professor Andy Blowers, chairman of Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group, set up in response to plans for a new nuclear plant at Bradwell, urged communities to work together to mobilise opposition to new nuclear build. “Unity is strength,” he said.

Prof Blowers claimed that decision-making was biased towards the nuclear industry which had privileged access to information.

“It is important that decision-making is open and that communities are fully engaged and can articulate fears,” he said.

Professor David Elliott, an expert in sustainable energy, told the meeting that nuclear power was not a suitable option because of dependence on foreign supplies of uranium fuel.

“If there are concerns that we are becoming more reliant for our energy needs on insecure fuel sources, the same is true for uranium supplies.

“Nuclear's contribution to provision of energy and reduction of climate change gases is likely to be small. Nuclear is a diversion and also works in competition with renewable energy. They are not compatible.

“Nuclear is not only unnecessary, it will take up resources and get in the way of what should be done,” he said.

Pete Wilkinson, a Suffolk-based environmental consultant and a former member of the Government's Committee on Radioactive Waste Management, said the proposed new stations would also be radioactive waste dumps.

“The genuine concerns of people should be taken into consideration and be openly discussed by Government and local authorities,” he said.

Dr. Ian Fairlie, former adviser to the Food Standards Agency, said further study was needed on the relationship between low level radiation and leukaemia.

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