Emergency Planning— Our Meeting With Top Member Of The ONR

In late June, three members of the Shut Down Sizewell Campaign met in London with top members of the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR): Dr. Richard Savage, the Chief Nuclear Inspector; Donald Urquhart, the Head of Emergency Preparedness and Gareth Thomas the Lead Specialist for Offsite Emergency Planning. The meeting was arranged following a failure to address issues by written correspondence and a subsequent en passe on the subject of the ‘Herca—Wenra’ approach to nuclear coordination and cross-border frameworks. Although the primary focus of the meeting was the Herca-Wenra discussions, concerns about local emergency planning were also raised and also the independent role of the ONR. The two—hour meeting helped clarify correct channels of communication with the Civil Contingencies Minister and also encouraged the Campaign to participate in the forthcoming consultation in relation to Radiation Emergency Preparedness and Public Information Regulations (REPPIR). No indication however was forthcoming from the ONR as to when, if ever, the UK’s emergency plans would reach the standard that the Head of the ONR had agreed in November 2014. The ONR representatives said they found the meeting helpful and that it was consistent with their requirement to consult with ‘civil society’. A number of actions will now be taken including addressing local emergency planning concerns with Suffolk’s Head of Emergency Planning.