Countering Capenhurst – Late Spring 2021

DRS

Waste Train Tracking.

Freightmaster is a guide to rail-borne freight services, which include the scheduled movements of DRS Nukiller Waste flask movements

As of march this year there are no longer printed version of Freightmaster, but they contine to be available online.

New Logo.

DRS has just launched a new Logo.

The old one had a resemblance to the NATO symbol.

To quote the DRS website: –

‘ The modernised identity for Direct Rail Services (DRS) has been created to give a slightly differentiated yet family resemblance with the Nuclear Transport Solutions [ NTS ] brand.’

Waste Train Photos.

Meanwhile the latest issue of Railways Illustrated [ May 2021 ] has a four page photo feature in it about DRS.

Direct Rail Services in Scotland.

This feature includes a couple of photo of Nukiller waste trains. One of them includes the following caption which is of note: –

‘ As a rule of thumb, all nuclear trains with two locos to cover any potential breakdown.’

Waste Flask Movements.

On February 18th there was Waste Fuel flasks being taken from Hunterston to Sellafield.

Woops!

On March 1st there was a points failure outside of the Brigdewater goods yard. That is the one were Nukiller fuel flasks from Hinkley are transferred from Road vehicles to DRS rail wagons.

As as result of this points failure a DRS train hauling a solitary empty fuel flask was left to wait for four and a half hours.

If it had been the other way around, with the flasks full of radioactive used fuel rods, then it would have been somewhat worrying.

Half a century of Campaigning

Greenpeace [ London ] Marks 50 Years of Campaigning

It was on July 8th 1971 that Peace News published the original

Greenpeace You and Your Environment broadsheet.

This listed many ways in which an individual could take actions to save the environment.

Out of the broadsheet and people around Peace News that Greenpeace [ London ] came in to being. The group has in later years been referred to as London Greenpeace.

The early work of the group was centred around a campaign to stop French atmospheric Nukiller bomb tests in the Pacific.

Then in the mid 1970s the group started campaigning up the issue of nukiller power and uranium mining.

That included founding the founding of Stop Urenco.

This is how the group become of interest to the SDS spycops.

Currently the group and activists in the group are core participants within the Undercover policing inquiry.

Short News Updates

Springfields.

We noted with great interest the following headline in the Blackpool Gazette :-

Jobs face the axe at Lancashire’s key nuclear fuels plant
Around 120 jobs may be under threat at Lancashire’s nuclear fuels plant, as unions blame the government for dragging its feet on building new nuclear power stations.’

Wirral

Wirral Council is the local authority for the area just north of Capenhurst.

In march the council announced that it would use 100% renewable electricity from April.

This is due to concerns about climate change.

Cumbia Coal Mine

At the end of march we signed the following statement as part of the campaign to stop a new coal mine being created next door to Sellafield.

No Need for Expensive Public Inquiry – Just Block Licence to Drill Say Leading Organisations

Online Resources.

The Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung has just published the following: The 7 reasons why nuclear energy is not the answer to solve climate change.

Forthcoming Events

– 64th Anniversary of the Windscale fire – October 10th.

– Fukushima Day – March 11th.

– The DRS Open Day – In July if it takes place next year.

What Next ?

After what will be almost a year and a half of curtailed activities due to the pandemic we will need to kick start our work again.

In particular we will need to have a gathering of activists within the North West in order to work out how we focus our wok within the coming year.

In the meanwhile we will aim to hold a couple of small symbolic protests at both Capenhurst and Springfields.

Countering Capenhurst – March 2021

Continuing to Campaign

While we are still in lockdown it remains difficult to keep active campaigning going, which is why we still looking at some of those aspects of the nukiller industry which normally get very little attention.

DRS Updates

Flask Movements.

We are still looking for individuals to help keep us informed about the movements of the various DRS nukiller waste flasks. So if do see any please let us know.

In the meanwhile here are a couple of reports of late.

On December 7th two flasks were spotted at Dungeness,

while on December 9th a flask or flasks were sent from Huntington to Sellafield.

Cumbrian Community Rail

Community Rail Cumbria (CRC) comprises the three accredited Community Rail lines in Cumbria which includes the Cumbrian Coast Line. That is the rail line which runs from Carlisle to Barrow, and includes Sellafield.

This is how the station is described upon their website: –

‘ Sellafield station was opened in 1850 to serve a remote area of farms. The station is now a busy freight location, as much of the nuclear waste arising from the UK’s decommissioning programme is carried by train here from the docks in Barrow-in-Furness or from rail-connected nuclear power stations elsewhere in the UK. The station marks the end of the single line section from Whitehaven, which is operated using the electric key token system.’

The Aims pf the CRC include:-

– To undertake a pro-active approach to those sections of the Cumbrian community disadvantaged by health, isolation or social deprivation.

&

– To seek effective passenger and freight rail service improvements;

The DRS Connection

During November Eddie Pollock became the new CRC Chairman.

This is how he is described upon the website _

‘As a long-standing member of the Partnership, Eddie has represented Direct Rail Services who have been an influential and supportive partner for many years

Recently, his role within Direct Rail Services has evolved from Projects Planner to Business Development Manager.’

Working together

In February we read the following news in the Rail Advent:

‘Direct Rail Services has announced that has joined up with NDA Transport Subsidiaries to launch Nuclear Transport Solutions, which will start in April 2021.’

‘ The freight operator is owned by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, with Nuclear Transport Solutions expected to become the “centre of excellence” that will bring together commercial, legal and operational expertise under one roof.’

NDA Update

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority [ NDA ] has just publish their

Draft Business Plan1 April 2021 to 31 March 2024

This includes a section upon both: –

Springfields Fuels Limited and Urenco Nuclear Stewardship Limited.

Contact Update.

You may of noticed that we have disabled the Comments feature on this webpage. This has been done due the high volume of spam we were receiving.

While due to lockdown it is taking longer for any mail to get to us.

So if you have any need to contact us then please use our email address.

closecapenhurst[at]gmail.com

Forthcoming Events

– Fukushima Day – March 11th.

– The DRS Open Day – In July if it takes place this year.

– 64th Anniversary of the Windscale fire – October 10th.

Countering Capenhurst – Late November / Early December 2020

DRS Updates

DRS are once again transporting Radioactive waste from the decommissioned Magnox reactor at Berkeley.

They are being taken via the Sharpness, Gloucestershire, rail line. That’s the short line which goes goes from Sharpness to Cam & Dursley, at which junction it joins the main line which goes north via Gloucester and Worcester.

The first of these DRS trains took a load in August. There will be similar train loads taking place every month.

Recent DRS Radioactive Waste Flask Movements

The movement of nukiller waste to Sellafield by DRS continues.

These are just some of the recent movements of these highly radioactive used fuel rods.

Flask movements were observed on August 11th, September 11th, and 12th. There were also waste flasks going to and from Torness on September 16th & 23th, and then again on October 15th. While

other waste flasks went to & from Dungeness on October 5th 6th and 7th.

Campaigning in Australia.

Don’t Nuke The Climate – Australia,

This is a a coalition of environment groups that actively track and respond to nuclear threats in Australia.

It has a lot of very useful information and maps on its website which include both Nukiller and Uranium Sites.

Spycops Targeted Anti Nukiller Activists

If it was not for the many years of spycop activities, many social justice and ecological campaigns would not still be necessary.

The following comes from the current Spycops Public Inquiry.

AMENDED WRITTEN OPENING STATEMENT ON BEHALF OFTHE DESIGNATED LAWYER OFFICER CORE PARTICIPANT GROUP

TRANCHE 1, PHASES 1-2: SPECIAL DEMONSTRATION SQUAD UNDERCOVER DEPLOYMENTS 1968-1982

‘ Infiltration necessarily had to be achieved before and not during or after times of high intensity and activity which could be quickly triggered by an event or the coalescence of disparate groups around a cause célèbre or topical issue with wider support, e.g. Vietnam, apartheid, internment, industrial action, ban the bomb, nuclear power, the transport of nuclear waste by train or the Falklands War.’

In other words – This confirms that Pacifists and Anti nukiller power activists were being subjected to spycop activities.

This full statement can be read at: –

https://www.ucpi.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/20201028-Opening_Statement-DL_Clients.pdf

We fully expect there to be many more similar revelations made during the duration of the inquiry.

The next phase of the spycops public inquiry hearings will be held some time around the start of April 2021.

Not Seen

One of the side effects of the current crisis we are all in, is that the [ Office for Nuclear Regulation ] are not performing their regular on site inspections of various nukiller plants.

This is what it says on the ONR Site Report for Urenco Capenhurst for the period April, May, and June: –

‘ No on-site Inspections due to Covid-19.’

While the site inspection for the Heysham Reactor is reported thus: –

Heysham 1•4 August (Site inspection)•14 –17 September (Site and remote inspection)Heysham 2•9 June(Physical Inspection)•18 June(Remote Inspection)•23 June(Remote Inspection)

In contrast – This what took place at Torness: –

‘The duration of the station visits has been kept to a minimum and focused on plant walk downs and other activities which ONR are unable to conduct remotely.’

In the site inspection report for Hinkley,

[ Yes Hinkley Not Capenhurst ], we found the following: –

‘ ONR has granted an extension to an Enforcement Notice served on Urenco UK Ltd, recognising the good progress made so far. The notice was issued in late December 2019, following a fire safety inspection at the Capenhurst Works in Cheshire, which revealed shortfalls in the fire alarm and detection systems at one of the site’s facilities. Urenco UK Ltd must comply with the requirements of the extended notice by 30 September 2020.’

In conclusion.

We have found many good reasons to keep inspecting the ONR nukiller plants inspection reports – on a very regular basis.

Forthcoming Events

Given the current restrictions on public transport, it is not possible to do much forward planning, or undertake any of our regular events.

However there are a few dates which we wish to highlight over the coming year.

– Human Rights Day – December 10th.

– Fukushima Day – March 11th.

– The DRS Open Day – In July if it takes place at all.

– 64th Anniversary of the Windscale fire – October 10th.

Countering Capenhurst – October 2020

Right Now

This is very much an interim issue of Countering Capenhurst.

Aside from having to deal with the effects of Lockdown, we are working upon a number of other related issues, while putting together the groundwork for some further campaigning resources.

In Between all the bad news

During September it was announced that HITACHI is withdrawing from building WYLFA B

We congratulate PAWB (People Against Wylfa B) for all their work in pushing for this outcome.

Meanwhile

‘ A decision on planning consent for the Wylfa Newydd nuclear power plant project on Anglesey that was due to be made yesterday has been delayed until 31 December, as requested by Horizon Nuclear Power, the UK project developer owned by Japan’s Hitachi.’

DRS

DRS continue to drag nukiller waste flasks to Sellafield [ Windscale ].

The latest ones included –

To and from Torness on July 14th and August 5th

Then in Early September this was the headline on the Devonlive website

Rare Class 66 train carrying nuclear flasks heads into Plymouth.

‘This was a ‘ very rarely seen DRS Nuclear Flask Train worked down from Crewe Coal Sidings to Devonport Royal Dockyard for the decommissioning of a few submarines down at the Naval base/dockyard down at Devonport.’

DRS Publication.

There is a new glossy publication about DRS

Direct Rail Services: 25 Years of Rail Haulage

This 132 page publication is aimed at train spotters, with lots of colour photographs in it.

Most importantly it lists all the information about the various train engines it uses to haul both goods wagons and nukiller waste flasks.

While it features a number of articles about operations of the nukiller waste trains.

63 Years Later

On October 10th 1957 the Windscale Fire occurred.

To understand just what happened you need to read about the Windscale Piles.

It was one of the first, but by no means the last nukiller reactor disaster.

Future Events

At Present it is extremely difficult to plan an future events due to the current pandemic.

We do however continue to collecting and distributing information about all aspects of the nukiller power industry.

Once it is possible to do so then we will be holding a series of demonstrations outside of various Nukiller plants.

It is also our intention to hold a small face to face gathering to discuss how we continue campaigning once it is possible to do so.

In the meanwhile we will continue to post various updates upon our Facebook page.

Countering Capenhurst – June 2020

DRS – Not This year

This years DRS [ Direct Rail Services ] Open Day event has been cancelled. This is why as described on the company website: –

‘We are in unprecedented times and want to ensure the safety of everyone who attends our events.’

This is the same DRS that is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), and which hauls nukiller waste to Sellafield.

Despite this years cancellation we will continue to campaign upon the nukiller waste trains issue, and be back to picket their next open day event.

Issues Briefings

While subject to lockdown, and a very restricted public transport service, it is going to be very difficult to organise events of any kind for some while to come.

Thus we have been putting together a series of issue briefings. The first of these have been about Drigg, Barrow, the Hartlepool reactor, Tyson H Burridge, and how Rising tides will effect various nukiller power sites.

We are currently working on a few more of these briefings.

The next one will be about the ONR [ Office of Nuclear Regulation ].

So watch out for these reports upon this website during the next few months.

Future Events

Given the current restrictions on public transport, it is not possible to do much forward planning, or undertake any of our regular events.

We will however be marking the anniversary of the 1957 Windscale on October 10th in some form or other.

Countering Capenhurst – April 2020

What Next At Capenhurst?

What Next with the Nukiller Power Industry ?

There are questions which we are currently looking at in the light of the current fall in energy demands and fuel prices.

This in turn will effect the likelihood of nukiller new build taking place.

There is a lot to be considered here, especially when read in connection to such as the following news story:-

‘ EDF withdraws financial guidance for 2020 and 2021 as coronavirus hits power demand.’

Thanks to Lush

As with a number of activists campaigning groups we have received financial support from the Lush Fund, for which we are all extremely grateful.

In February an critical article entitled ‘Just to sell soap’ appeared in Nuclear Engineering International which listed the following as being in support of these funds.

‘ BeyondNuclear, Highlands Against Nuclear Transport, Radiation-Free Lakeland and the Close Capenhurst Campaign, as well as several anti-fracking campaigns and one against coal.’

The logical conclusion to this might be that some people in the the nukiller power industry see these donations us by LUSH as a great threat to their activities.

Yet in contrast we should point out the vast amount of state money which subsidises they receive.

What people in the nukiller power industry need to remember is that with or without this funding we will continue campaigning for just as long as it takes to close down all their plants.

URENCO – Business As Normal

The URENCO COVID-19 statement which was issued on March 20th states: –

‘ Urenco has ongoing detailed preparations in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our employees, communities and key stakeholders, and our ability to keep our plants operating.’

Yet contains not a word about the dangers posed to us by the movement of radioactive hex in and our of the plant.

Woops! Nobody Noticed that!

In march this was the headline in The Ferret: –

Radioactive waste wrongly sent to Hunterston nuclear plant

Investigations have been launched into how radioactive waste ended up in a transport container at Hunterston nuclear power station in breach of environmental rules.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has disclosed that unauthorised radioactive “debris” was found in a supposedly empty fuel flask returned to the North Ayrshire plant from the Sellafield nuclear complex in Cumbria.’

No Trains Today.

There is currently a replacement bus service on the West Coast Cumbria railway line between Workington & Whitehaven. This is because of a landslide at Parton, which is just north of Whitehaven.

Why is this important to note you might just ask, but the point to keep in mind is that the line is used by DRS nukiller waste trains going from Carlisle to Sellafield.

This is the route used to carry highly radioactive spent fuel rods from the Hunterston, Torness, and Hartlepool nukiller power plants.

Future Events.

With DRS in to a Post Apocalyptic world.

As of now, April 2020, there is no indication that the DRS Open Day will take place this year.

Sowe will not be back again leafleting the DRS Depot this year July,

but will continue to leaflet the various stations nukiller waste goes through just as soon as lockdown is over.

Remembering the Windscale Fire

We do hope to be hold an event to mark the anniversary of the 63nd Anniversary Of The Windscale Fire on October 10th

Just what that event will be will depend what the transport situation is by then.

The Last Used Highly Radioactive Fuel Rods Sent From Wylfra To Sellafield.

Close Capenhurst Campaign Statement

Concerning the last radioactive fuel rods transported by rail from Wylfra.

While we welcome the end of highly radioactive used fuel rods being transported from Wylfra via Chester and Crewe to Sellafield.

We are still concerned about all the other nukiller fuel rods which are transported by DRS [Direct Rail Services ] to Sellafield via nearby Crewe.

We will continue to campaign upon this issue, together with the movement of Uranium Hexafluoride [ Hex ] to and from Capenhurst by road.

While continuing to support the demand of PAWB – People Against Wylfa-B that No New Atomic Power Plant be built on Anglesey .

Countering Capenhurst – Summer 2019

Yet Again – DRS

This year we published a new leaflet which was distributed at the DRS [ Direct Rail Services ] open day at Carlisle. Unlike the previous one we used, this new one can be distributed on other occasions.

You can see a copy of the text of the leaflet we used here: –

As in previous years this protest was organised in conjunction with Radiation Free Lakelands.

Follow on.

On June 1st a DRS nukiller waste flask passed through Warrington Bank Quay station on the way to Sellafield. We will be leafleting outside the station on Thursday August 15th as part of our work to inform people about these dangerous loads.

We will continue to organise more such leafleting sessions at other stations where these flasks go through, as a part of our public awareness work. These will be held outside stations in the nukiller north west. Please let us know if you want to join us on them.

If your in London then you can also join the ones which are organised by the Nuclear Waste Trains Action Group c/o CND Mordechai Vanunu House, 162 Holloway Road, London N7 8DQ

Long term campaigning – long term costs.

Most of the campaigning work we are engaged upon can not be achieved in just a matter of a few years, as the very nature of nukiller power means it will take decades to clean up the radioactive mess.

Thus we always need to think out how to maintain this long term campaigning, and how to finance this work.

Thus unlike many many campaigning groups we have to look at our long term finances and expenditures.

For example – In July we renewed out webpage domain name for another five years.

Then there are the ongoing costs which come from printing and distributing our leaflets.

We don’t have any staff or office to pay for, but there are still travel costs which need to be covered.

It all adds up +£+£+£

Last year we received a very generous donation from the Lush Fund, but we can not forever rely upon such funders to bankroll our work.

At present we are working to produce a new edition of Wildlife and the Atom, which was published by Greenpeace [ London ] in 1983.

That and a couple of other new publication we have in mind to produce will eat in to our finances.

So we are now appealing for your help to finance our essential campaigning work.

If you would like to make a contribution, then email us and we will tell you how it might be done.

Online Resources

7 reasons why nuclear energy is not the answer to solve climate change

Anniversaries & Forthcoming Events

October 10thSpringfields

We will be back at the Springfields plant to mark 61 years since the Windscale Fire.

This will be an event which starts at 14.00.

March 4th 2020

50 years since the signing of the Almelo Treaty.

We will be organising an event to mark this date.

More details later on in the year.

Countering Capenhurst – Summer 2018

Statement by Dr Paul Dorfman

There is no question but there are very real concerns about the lack of transparency surrounding Capenhurst’s activities  the adequacy of nuclear safeguards at Capenhurst Environmental and public health risks associated with Capenhurst’s routine operations as well as incidents and accidents Capenhursts management of uranium hexafluoride.

Fukushima Contrasts

If anyone wants to know just what the ONR [ Office for Nuclear Regulation ] has to say about the ongoing disaster at Fukushima, then they should read the following: –

Fukushima and the UK nuclear industry

That report was penned in 2011, and they have added nothing to it since then.

In contrast Kick Nuclear has been producing the regular Fukushima Updates.

The latest of which is to be found here.

More on Uranium exports to Russia.

Radiation Free Lakeland published this very useful article on the sale of Uranium products to Russia.
The Beautiful Game?  

EXPORT OF URANIUM PRODUCTS TO RUSSIA FROM PRESTON “IS IMPORTANT” to the UK.

As we keep saying: –

These sales raise many very worrying concerns, while the details of these exports are surrounded in secrecy.

DRS Open Day – July 2018- A summary report

July 21st was the 5th time that we have gone to a DRS Open Day event.

This year, despite our not being able to get more activists to turn up on the day, we did never the less managed to hand out some 2,500 leaflets in just under four hours.

While inside the depot there was a nukiller waste train wagon on display.

You can view them upon just some of the youtube videos of the event here, here, & here.

What strikes us about this is that DRS are now aiming to normalise seeing these waste flasks.

Next year we will be at the DRS Open Day at Carlisle, where we will be organising a protest in the company of our fellow activists from Radiation Free Lakelands.

Anniversaries & Forthcoming Events

August 4th – St Bees, Cumbria.

Radiation Free Lakeland [ RFL ] has sent an urgent to Sellafield, asking them to monitor and retrieve radioactive particles from St bees beach ahead of the Cumbria Wildlife Trust ‘Beached Art’ day on Sunday August 4th.

Sellafield have treated this straightforward request under Freedom of Information rules which means that there will not be a reply for at least a month, and even then they might have to pay for the request to be answered.

The request has been sparked by a citizen science project carried out by Radiation Free Lakeland volunteers in collaboration with nuclear science undergraduates at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in the US.

In the absence of any warnings from the authorities, RFL will once again be at the beach at St Bees to leaflet and warn people about the very real possibility of their children (or pregnant mothers) ingesting radioactive cesium, americium and plutonium.

August 6th – Hiroshima Day.

August 9th – Nagasaki Day.

October 10th – Springfields

We will be back at the Springfields plant to mark 61 years since the Windscale Fire.

July 2019

The next DRS Open Day will take place at their depot at Carlisle.

We will be back to leaflet the event in the company of our fellow activists from Radiation Free Lakeland.

Thomas the Stank Engine

Thomas the Stank Engine got his name because he hauls DRS [Direct Rail Services] train wagons, which contain very stinky, very dirty, and very nasty nukiller waste.

Come Join us as we tell the tale of Thomas and his mates!

Distribute this information outside any of the railway stations which Thomas passes through.