For immediate release: 29 June 2004

CND has reacted swiftly to today’s announcement from the British Nuclear Group (formerly BNFL) that Chapelcross nuclear power station is to cease generation because keeping the reactors running cannot be commercially justified.

Kate Hudson, CND chair, welcomed the news and said:

‘This is a welcome closure – and not only on commercial grounds. CND has been asking questions about Chapelcross since doubts were raised about the structural integrity of the reactor cores back in 2002. Keeping this old station running would have meant preparing a safety case for the nuclear regulator (NII), and given the dangerous state that existed deep within the inaccessible radioactive cores, this would have proved an impossible task. BNG has taken the only safe course of action open to it.’

However, Chapelcross has a wider significance as it also strongly underlines the close links between nuclear power and nuclear weapons. Chapelcross’s greatest significance is as the only production plant in the UK for Tritium, which is vital to UK Trident nuclear warhead production and maintenance.

Kate Hudson said:

‘Rather than looking for an alternative source of Tritium, CND demands that the government takes this opportunity to cease nuclear warhead production, and comply with its nuclear disarmament obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.’


Notes to Editor:

1. For further information please contact CND’s Press Office on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859, or CND Campaigns Worker Patrick Van Den Bulck on 020 7700 2393 or 07968 420858