Campaigners consider appeal against High Court decision

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CAMPAIGNERS are considering whether to launch an appeal against a High Court decision to allow low-level radioactive waste from being dumped near their homes.

King’s Cliffe Waste Watchers took their fight to stop Augean from dumping the waste at its East Northants Resource Management Facility in Stamford Road, Kings Cliffe, to London’s High Court.

But on Thursday last week, Deputy Judge QC Stewart upheld a decision in May by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles to allow waste to be dumped there.

Clare Langan, a member of Waste Watchers, said the group was still discussing its options with solicitor Richard Buxton, a Cambridge-based specialist in environmental work.

She said: “I am upset and disappointed by the decision but we are still talking to our legal team about a possible appeal.”

East Northamptonshire MP Louise Mensch (Con) said she would wait to hear from the campaigners before progressing a planned meeting with Government ministers, which had been delayed by the High Court battle.

She said: “I hope to have that meeting to be able to put in place some additional and robust monitoring on the site to give my constituents some comfort that we are actively monitoring the levels of radioactive waste.”

Augean has agreed not to dump low-level radioactive waste at the site for four weeks to give the campaigners a chance to appeal.

Augean said in a statement: “It is reassuring that the integrity of the environmental impact assessment and its scope has been reaffirmed. The challenge was made on a narrow point of law and did not relate to the safety or the policy merits of the proposal.

“Augean will continue to work with the nuclear decommissioning market to deliver this nationally significant project.”

Augean’s planning application was refused by Northamptonshire County Council in March, following a protest but Mr Pickles overturned that decision, meaning half the site can be used for hazardous waste from nuclear sites like power plants and hospitals until 2013 in May.

Augean has also submitted planning applications to use the site until 2026. These have not yet been decided.

Source – Rutland Times

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