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Nigg Dump Fears

Fears that an iconic industrial site in the Highlands could end up as a radioactive scrap yard have been re-ignited by news that a nuclear decommissioning company is set to buy the site.

The former Nigg Fabrication Yard on the Cromarty Firth is up for sale, and the Birmingham-based demolition company, DSM, has become the "preferred bidder". It specialises in breaking up large structures, include oil rigs, ships and buildings.

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Huhne Against Trident Replacement

Liberal Democrat leadership contender Chris Huhne has moved to seize the initiative from his front-running rival Nick Clegg by breaking with party policy on keeping Britain's Trident nuclear missiles.

Huhne told The Observer it would be 'ridiculous' to spend up to £15bn updating the ageing submarine-based nuclear arsenal, describing it as a Cold War relic. He also argued this would risk further tying Britain to American policies, something he suggested should be avoided in the wake of the Iraq war.

Scotland's Future Without Nuclear Weapons

The Scottish Government has hosted a summit - A National Conversation: Scotland's Future Without Nuclear Weapons - to discuss the implications of the UK Government's decision to replace the Trident system on Scotland.

The summit in Glasgow followed a vote in the Scottish Parliament on June 14 in which Holyrood registered its opposition to the proposal in the UK Government White Paper, The Future of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Deterrent, to replace the existing Trident defence system.


Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Minister for Parliamentary Business Bruce Crawford represented the Scottish Government among representatives from churches, trade unions, local authorities, and Government to discuss the impact of the UK Government's decision on devolved areas of responsibility and how best to present the Scottish view.

MOD Admit Scottish Ministers Could Block Trident

Plans to refurbish the Clyde naval bases to accommodate a replacement for the Trident nuclear weapons system could be stymied by Scottish Ministers, according to an internal memo from the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

A new dry dock for servicing nuclear submarines would require planning permission while other developments would be subject to a raft of pollution controls. These are all the responsibility of the Scottish Government, not Westminster.

Scottish Ministers Reject New Nuclear Power Stations

Scottish Ministers have rejected new nuclear power stations as dangerous and unnecessary.

Energy Minister Jim Mather instead wants the billions of pounds that could be spent on nuclear power reallocated to make Scotland and the UK a world leader in clean, renewable technologies.

Crown Abandons Remaining Prestwick Cases

Three peace activists who entered Prestwick Airport as weapons inspectors during the August 2006 war in Lebanon have learned that the Ayr Procurator Fiscal has decided to withdraw the charges, after "further consideration of the evidence".
 
Sylvia Boyes from Yorkshire, Roz Bullen from Edinburgh and Kate Holcombe from Worcestershire were due to face trial at the end of the month accused of breaching the Civil Aviation Act.  Acting on knowledge that the airport was being used in the transport of weapons for use in the invasion of Lebanon, they were inside Prestwick Airport for over 2 hours.  They found the military area, monitored the flights and got up to a cargo plane they suspected was involved in carrying munitions, before they were arrested. Their action was the first of three consecutive nights of organised citizens' inspections at the airport.  Out of the 17 people originally charged the Crown have been able to obtain only two convictions.

Nuclear Education Centre To Close

A £2.2 million UK nuclear education centre created in 2004 to capitalise on decommissioning spin-offs is to close its doors due to lack of interest. The Decommissioning and Environmental Remediation Centre (DERC), located near the Dounreay nuclear plant in northern Scotland, was set up as a major education, training and research centre to pioneer nuclear decommissioning education in the UK

Former Lord Advocate Queries Trident's Legality

The former Lord Advocate, Lord Murray, is seeking advice from the current holder of the office, Eilish Angiolini, on the legality of Trident nuclear missiles.

Lord Murray was one of a delegation of campaigners who  made a submission to the Lord Advocate, calling on her to examine evidence that the nuclear deterrent, housed at Faslane naval base on the Clyde, may be illegal under international law

1957 Accident Released Twice As Much Radioactivity

Britain's worst nuclear accident, the 1957 Windscale fire in Cumbria, released twice as much radioactive debris as was previously thought. 

'We have had to double our estimates of amounts that were released,' said former UK Atomic Energy Authority researcher John Garland. As a result of this re-evaluation, scientists say the fire - which sent a plume of caesium, iodine and polonium across Britain and northern Europe - may have caused several dozen more cases of cancer than had been estimated previously.

Obama Calls for Elimination of all Nuclear Weapons

Senator Barack Obama has proposed setting a goal of eliminating all nuclear weapons in the world, saying the United States should greatly reduce its stockpiles to lower the threat of nuclear terrorism.

In a speech at De Paul University in Chicago, Mr. Obama added  his voice to a plan endorsed earlier this year by a bipartisan group of former government officials from the cold war era who say the United States must begin building a global consensus to reverse a reliance on nuclear weapons that have become “increasingly hazardous and decreasingly effective.”