24 April 2006: for immediate release

The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament today reacted with alarm at the recent Defence Select Committee report detailing the loss of £147 million at the Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Establishment on a building to treat liquid radioactive waste. The building was found to be unfit for operation and had to be written off. The Committee blasted the MoD for its poor handling of this project, which the MoD admits “was handled badly.”

The Atomic Weapons Establishment, which is often portrayed as a clean scientific research facility, is actually an atomic bomb factory which produces significant quantities of radioactive waste containing plutonium and tritium. A previous strategy to deal with liquid radioactive waste at AWE Aldermaston by dumping ‘treated’ waste in the River Thames was stopped due to public pressure.

Kate Hudson, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, said, “The MoD has wasted nearly £150 million of taxpayers’ money on a failed building to treat liquid radioactive waste. When will the government realise that they must stop creating dangerous radioactive waste and commit to fully cleaning up the toxic legacy that has already been created?”

Ms Hudson also commented on the new wave of building occurring at AWE Aldermaston, including the £100 million ORION laser facility which can mimic a nuclear explosion. She said, “In spite of this wasteful project, the government is pressing ahead with further building. The government must listen to the British people, a majority of whom oppose the replacement of our Trident nuclear weapons system, and stop investing in infrastructure to build new nuclear weapons.”


Notes to Editor:

1. For further information and interviews please contact Rick Wayman, CND’s Press & Communications Officer, on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
2. The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 32,000 members in the UK. CND campaigns for the abolition of all nuclear weapons everywhere.