Nuclear Contamination at Hinkley Point

Published on July 24, 2012 by

A short presentation about enriched Uranium contamination at the Hinkley Point nuclear power station complex on the Somerset coast. This is an update on the arguments about the presence of higher than expected levels of Uranium on the site which began with a report by Green Audit at the end of 2010. The site is being developed by French company EdF energy for a new nuclear reactor.

Dr Busby visited the site in January 2011with Rosa Cato and measured higher gamma radiation dose rates than were reported to the Environment Agency in the site characterisation documents. Gamma dose rates were above 150nGy/h compared with measurements of 90nGy/h reported in the scientific literature at the perimeter fence in 1993 and less than 60nGy/h reported by EdF in the documents examined by the Environment Agency. These reported gamma radiation levels were clearly wrong and this should have been questioned.

The high gamma dose rates measured by Chris Busby are predictable on the basis of the levels of Uranium reported for the site by EdF. In addition, a soil sample taken by Stop Hinkley from the site has been analysed using ICPMS in Germany and high resolution gamma spectrometry and both methods independently confirm the presence of slightly enriched Uranium. Overall Uranium concentrations are twice to four times greater than would be expected for the area on the basis of published Uranium maps. This supports the original 2011 report by Green Audit. Measurement of anomalous levels of Iodine in the soil sample by ICPMS show that contamination is transferred from the sea which opens up the issue of the high levels of cancer and infant mortality found by Green Audit in the downwind coastal town of Burnham on Sea.

The new Green Audit report on this issue is at

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