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Paul Mobbs &
Mobbs' Environmental Investigations –

Work Archive –
Themes Index:

Nuclear Power, Weapons and Waste

I've worked primarily with community groups for many years – mostly in the UK, but also in Eastern Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. The materials produced from that work have relevance not just to the people who commissioned them, but many other communities too. For that reason I maintain an on-line archive of my work.

For details of the licensing restrictions on using these resources, see the Copyright and Sharing page.

Work Archive:
'Themes' Index

Articles

Handouts

Infographics

Media Coverage

Podcasts

Presentations

Ramblinactivist

Reports/Research

Themes

Activism

Climate

Cyberwarfare

Ecological Limits

Energy

FLOSSH

'Fracking'

Hacktivism

Nuclear

'Outdoors'

Peace

Permaneering

Planning

Pollution/Waste

Simplicity/Less

Quakerism

Video and Audio

The 'Nuclear Power, Weapons and Waste' theme covers all aspects of the nuclear fuel cycle, radioactive materials & waste, health physics and nuclear weapons.

Nuclear issues represents the intersection of many issues that I have an interest in – the environment, engineering, energy, waste, pollution and peace. The fact that nuclear materials are so problematic to hold and handle also means that their use inevitably has a link to both corporate and political power.

Tackling the problems created by the nuclear fuel cycle, and its associated purposes and activities, involves tackling many myths and assumptions which – objectively – are ill-founded. At the same time, however, we have to accept that these problems have been created, and thus we have to find ways to safely deal with them.

Unfortunately, due to the sensitivity of the issue, it's difficult to have an open debate on nuclear issues.

The following resources have been produced over my long period of work on nuclear issues. Predominantly they relate to nuclear power, although over the last thirty years I have written on the thermal fission fuel cycle, nuclear fusion, as well as nuclear weapons.


The 'Nuclear Power, Weapons and Waste' Theme

inc image Mobbsey's Musings: 'Misdirecting the public's attention from fracking's radioactive footprint'

26/06/2014

As the facts about unconventional gas emerge around the globe the UK Government and the on-shore oil and gas industry have been pulling-down the shutters on their grand project. Increasingly reports are "being seen to be written rather than written to be seen". For example, last week Public Health England launched the final version of their report on shale gas and health – on the same day that the Jimmy Saville inquiry results were reported. That pretty much ensured there would be no room in the schedules for any critical analysis of it.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
58.7 kilobytes



inc image Mobbsey's Musings: 'Three years on, the Fukushima meltdown continues around the world'

12/03/2014

Three years ago today we first learned of the on-going meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. TV screens showed long lens shots of concrete buildings exploding in showers of dust, yet worsening the burdens of one of Japan's worst natural disasters in recent times.

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37.7 kilobytes



inc image Campaigners call for halt to nuclear convoys

27/02/2014

Banbury Guardian, 27th February 2014 "Anti-nuclear campaigners have spoken out against lorry convoys loaded with nuclear materials that pass through Banburyshire and which they say pose a potentially catastrophic risk to human life."

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224.4 kilobytes



inc image Mobbsey's Musings: 'Hinkley C and new nukes – the deeper systemic realities behind the obscuring smoke of nuclear economics'

21/10/2013

Having bashed out this email this evening I felt that I had to share it more widely. I've had a few arguments about this in the past few weeks and, unfortunately, thus far everyone appears to miss the deeper realities of what the terms of the contract for Hinkley C predict for future energy prices and the economy. Pity – because I believe that argument would be more readily considered by the public than the more abstract nuclear issue within which it is being described.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
100.9 kilobytes



inc image Ecolonomics no.11: "Doubt is not an agreeable condition, but certainty is an absurd one" – peak oil, nuclear power and the ecolonomics of existential material reality

16/04/2011

Another edition of ecolonomics so soon after the last? It's been one of those fortnights. The response to my last ecolonomics has been somewhat greater than usual – over 3,000 copies have been downloaded. I've had a lot of email too, not just mulling over my critique of George Monbiot but also looking at the whole context of what I said; which is good, because that's why I wrote it. I'm writing so soon after the last (in terms of size) "double issue" because of the events that have happened since then – events which put the content of the last edition in a whole new light.

file icon HTML version
135.5 kilobytes

file icon PDF version
366.1 kilobytes



inc image Ecolonomics no.10: When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?

22/03/2011

Given his previous opposition, George Monbiot's shift towards a blithe acceptance – if not full support – for nuclear power, in spite of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, has left many environmentalists feeling a little betrayed; I've even had a few emails today, due to my long history of working on energy and nuclear issues, asking me to vociferously "take him on". I don't see the point of a personalised attack, or what purpose it would serve to advance the debate – although it might act as a conduit for people to vent their fear and angst at the seeming collapse of the ecological alliance against nuclear power. Right or wrong, George's opinions are rightly his own. However, if he is representing "opinion" as some sort of "fact", using his "green icon" status to lend credibility, then that's an entirely different matter (I'm not entirely sure if he is, given his rather diffident views on the whole nuclear issue of late). What matters then are the facts; George is free to interpret these as he wishes. Although, in that context, I'd expect him to apply the oft-quoted phrase from John Maynard Keynes; "When the facts change, I change my mind." So, looking at the whole nuclear issue, what "facts" have possibly changed to make us, or George, believe that nuclear power today – in contrast to last week, last year, or even thirty years ago (when I was presented with the arguments at school) – has any better chance of solving our various ecological problems?

file icon HTML version
289.2 kilobytes

file icon PDF version
784.5 kilobytes



inc image Free Range Sheet E5: Nuclear Power – Why Nuclear isn't an Energy Solution

October 2008

Governments around the world are reviving nuclear power – and the fact that they're promoting such an unpopular form of energy production should be an indicator of the seriousness of our current situation! Nuclear power does not address the energy depletion problem. The resource constraints mean that nuclear is only a limited, short-term fix, with a long-term toxic legacy.

file icon HTML web page version
25 kilobytes

file icon Colour PDF version
155 kilobytes

file icon Greyscale 'print/photocopy' PDF version
110.5 kilobytes



inc image Consultation on RSA authorisations for the UKs Magnox Nuclear Power Stations

August 2000

On behalf of an ad-hoc consortium of environmental and anti-nuclear groups I undertook a major study of the operation of and radioactive discharges from the UK's Magnox nuclear power stations. This was in response to a consultation on new Radioactive Substances Act Act (RSA) authorisations for all the Magnox sites.

file icon Main report
317.5 kilobytes

file icon Briefing for campaign groups
53.2 kilobytes

file icon Annexes volume cover
18.8 kilobytes

file icon Annexes volume contents
54.3 kilobytes

file icon A-bomb survivors: factors that may lead to a re-assessment of the radiation hazard
Alice Stewart/George Kneale, International Journal of Epidemiology 2000; 29, 708-714 671
671.2 kilobytes

file icon Radioecology: relevance to the problems of the new millennium
F. Ward Whicker, Journal of Environmental Radioactivity 2000; 50, 173-178
396.9 kilobytes

file icon Environmental effects of radionuclides observations on natural ecosystems
D. Copplestone et. al. Journal of Radiological Protection 2000; 20, 29-40
850 kilobytes

file icon Evaluation of annual external radiation doses at values near minimum detection levels of dosimeters at the Hanford nuclear facility
David Richardson et. al., Journal of Exposure Analysis and Environmental Epidemiology 2000; 10, 27-35
787.7 kilobytes

file icon A system for radiological protection of the environment: some initial thoughts and ideas
R.J. Pentreath, Journal of Radiological Protection 1999; 19/2, 117-128
1 megabytes

file icon Control of low-level radiation exposure: time for a change?
Roger Clarke, Journal of Radiological Protection 1999; 19/2, 107-115
776.3 kilobytes

file icon The Seascale cluster: a problematic explanation
Richard Doll, British Journal of Cancer 1999; 81/1, 3-5
345.9 kilobytes

file icon Unexpected sensitivity to the induction of mutations by very low doses of alpha particle radiation: evidence for a bystander effect
Hatsumi Nagasawa/John Little, Radiation Research 1999; 152, 552-557
606.6 kilobytes

file icon Genetic heterogeneity in the population and its implications for radiation risk
Report of NRPB Advisory Group on Ionising Radiation, Documents of the NRPB, 10/3
322.5 kilobytes

file icon Childhood cancer and nuclear installations: a review
C.R. Muirhead, Nuclear Energy 1998; 37/6, 371-379
993.2 kilobytes

file icon Cancer in the offspring of radiation workers
F. Alexander, Busby/Scott Cato, A. Stewart, British Medical Journal 30/5/98; 316, 1672-1673
228.6 kilobytes

file icon Intercellular communication is involved in the bystander regulation of gene expression in human cells exposed to very low fluences of alpha particles
I. Edouard et. al., Radiation Research 1998; 150, 497-504
796.6 kilobytes

file icon Radiation roulette
Rob Edwards, New Scientist, 11/10/97; 36-40
1.1 megabytes

file icon Fitness and germline mutations in barn swallows breeding in Chernobyl
Hans Ellegren et. al., Nature, 9/10/97; 389, 593-596
471.7 kilobytes

file icon Further evidence for elevated human minisatellite mutation rate in Belarus eight years after Chernobyl accident
Yuri Dubrova et. al., Mutation Research 1997; 381, 267-278
977.5 kilobytes

file icon Death rates from leukaemia are higher than expected in areas around nuclear sites in Berkshire and Oxfordshire
Chris Busby/Molly Scott Cato, British Medical Journal, 2/8/97; 315, 309
100.4 kilobytes

file icon Childhood leukaemia in US may have risen due to fallout from Chernobyl
Joseph Mangano, British Medical Journal, 19/4/97; 314, 1200
90.8 kilobytes

file icon Case control study of leukaemia among young people near La Hague nuclear reprocessing plant: the environmental hypothesis revisited
Dominique Pobel/Jean-Francois Viel, British Medical Journal, 11/1/97; 314, 101-106
694.7 kilobytes

file icon Infant leukaemia after in utero exposure to radiation from Chernobyl
E. Petridou et. al., Nature, 25/7/97; 382, 352-353
238.4 kilobytes

file icon Chernobyl's legacy to science
Editorial, Nature, 25/4/97; 380, 653
167 kilobytes

file icon Cancer risk of low-level exposure
Marvin Goldman, Science, 29/3/96; 271, 1821-1822
238.4 kilobytes

file icon Genomic instability induced by ionising radiation
William Morgan et. al., Radiation Research 1996; 146, 247-258
1.6 megabytes

file icon Incidence of leukaemia in young people around La Hague nuclear waste reprocessing plant: a sensitivity analysis
Jean-Francois Viel/Dominique Pobel, Statistics in Medicine 1995; 14, 2459-2472
868.2 kilobytes

file icon Risk of radiation induced cancer at low doses and low dose rates for radiation protection purposes
Cox, Muirhead et. al., Documents of the NRPB 1995; 6/1
429.8 kilobytes

file icon Inconsistencies and open questions regarding low-dose health effects of ionising radiation
Nussbaum and Kohnlein, Environmental Health Perspectives 1994; 102/8, 656-667
1.7 megabytes

file icon Excess of other cancers in Wales
Chris Busby, British Medical Journal, 22/1/94; 308, 268
87.6 kilobytes

file icon Child leukaemia after Chernobyl
Ivanov et. al., Nature, 21/10/93; 365, 702
71.3 kilobytes

file icon Tritium: the overlooked hazard
Ian Fairlie, The Ecologist, Sept./Oct. 1992; 22/5, 228-232
755.2 kilobytes

file icon Neonatal mortality in Germany since the Chernobyl explosion
Jens Scheer, British Medical Journal, 28/3/92; 304, 843
36.8 kilobytes

file icon Cancer in populations living near nuclear facilities: A survey of mortality nation-wide and incidence in two states
Seymour Jablon et. al., Journal of the American Medical Association, 20/3/91; 265/11, 1403-1408
820.9 kilobytes

file icon Background gamma radiation and childhood cancer within ten miles of a US nuclear plant
Maureen Hatch & Mervyn Susser, International Journal of Epidemiology 1990; 19/3, 546-552
560.7 kilobytes

file icon Cancer near potential sites of nuclear installations
Paula Cook-Mozaffari et. al., The Lancet, 11/11/89; 1145-1147
314.4 kilobytes

file icon The risk of childhood leukaemia near nuclear establishments
J.W. Stather et. al., NRPBR215, January 1988
196.3 kilobytes

file icon Annex 2 – Legal and procedural documents
2 megabytes

file icon Annex 3 – Engineering and Economics Documents
2.2 megabytes



inc image Objections to the Application by the UKAEA for a Radioactive Substances Act Authorisation at Harwell Laboratory

March 2000

On behalf of Oxford and Southampton Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament I produced objections to the review of the Radioactive Substances Act authorisation at the UKAEA's Harwell Laboratory in south Oxfordshire

file icon Objection on behalf of Oxford CND
500.9 kilobytes

file icon Objection on behalf of Southampton CND
35.1 kilobytes



inc image Application for a RSA Authorisation for the AWE Aldermaston

November 1999

This report is a response, on behalf of the Nuclear Awareness Groups, to an application by the company that runs the UK's Atomic Weapons Establishment (where Britain makes its nuclear weapons) for a license to discharge radioactive substances.

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168.4 kilobytes



inc image Harwell Laboratory: Southern England's New Radioactive Waste Repository?

February 1999

An analysis of the UK Radioactive Waste Inventory, and the significance of the information it provides in relation to radioactive waste storage at Harwell in south Oxfordshire.

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300.8 kilobytes



inc image Radioactive Substances in South East England

October 1997

Many people consider that much of Britain's problems with nuclear materials are restricted to Cumbria, or at a very few nuclear power stations across the country – they are not. Every day radioactive materials are carried on our roads, and although much of what is carried is of minimal risk, some cargos, such as nuclear warheads, present a major risk to the public. In southern England there are a number of sites which release radioactivity into the environment. There are also sites which store 'low' and 'intermediate' level radioactive waste, and sites which contribute to the transport of radioactive material by rail or road as part of their everyday operation.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
Radioactive Substances in South East England
179.6 kilobytes



inc image Analysis and Response to the Environmental Statement for the AWE Aldermaston Waste Transfer Station

May 1996

In 1995/6 I did some work for anti-nuclear and peace groups in Berkshire relating to a proposal from AWE Aldermaston (where Britain makes it's nuclear weapons) to construct a radioactive waste transfer station. This was the report on the environmental statement that was eventually submitted by AWE for construction of the transfer station. Please note that these reports have been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

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155.7 kilobytes



inc image Response to Safeguard International's Environmental Statement on the Culham Radioactive Waste Transfer Station

November 1995

A report on the proposals to turn an old garage into a transfer station for hazardous radioactive wastes. It was rather a farce of a planning application, having been first unlawfully approved and then withdrawn by the local council, before being taken over and badly handled by the County Council.

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211.7 kilobytes



inc image Assessment of the planning application for a waste transfer station, AWE Aldermaston

April 1995

In 1995/6 I did some work for anti-nuclear and peace groups in Berkshire relating to a proposal from AWE Aldermaston (where Britain makes it's nuclear weapons) to construct a radioactive waste transfer station. Originally Berkshire County Council were just going to wave the proposals for AWE's radioactive waste transfer station through – this report outlines the authority's responsibility to demand an environmental statement for the development even though it did not require planning permission. Please note that these reports have been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
112.6 kilobytes



inc image Submission to the AWE Community Inquiry

March 1994

In 1994, Reading Borough Council held an informal 'community public inquiry' into the activities at AWE Aldermaston. This was my submission on behalf of Friends of the Earth in Oxfordshire. Please note that this report has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
155.9 kilobytes



inc image Frontier Plastics' Gamma Irradiator, Pontllanfraith

1993

An early and rather strange job in my early professional career – a plastics factory in Gwent wanted to put the largest lump of cobalt-60 in the UK (outside of Sellafield's waste materials stores) in a valley in Wales where there was serious mining subsidence. In the end I recommended it was approved with the condition that the mineworkings were first pressure grouted to prevent collapse – so it didn't go ahead as the company couldn't afford the multi-million pound cost of the works. Please note that this report has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

file icon Main report
118 kilobytes

file icon Supplementary report
83.1 kilobytes

file icon Planning committee briefing
136.7 kilobytes



inc image Chapelcross 'B': the case against construction of one, or two, Pressurised Water Reactors on the Solway Firth – Report on preliminary study

March 1992

In 1991/2 I did some work for the Chapelcross Watchdog and Action Group on the contamination from the Magnox power station and the proposals for a new nuclear power station. A review of the proposals for replacing the Magnox power station, which primarily was used to produce military plutonium and tritium for Britain's nuclear bomb programme, with one or two pressurised water reactors. Please note that this reports has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

file icon The case against Chapelcross 'B'
99.1 kilobytes



inc image Atom Riddle: Harwell Accused Over 'Secret' Dump

13/02/1992

Article published in the Oxford Star, 13th February 1992 – "Environmental campaigners have accused Harwell of secretly dumping waste in an Oxfordshire gravel pit."

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563.7 kilobytes



inc image Inner Solway Radiation Survey

December 1991

In 1991/2 I did some work for the Chapelcross Watchdog and Action Group on the contamination from the Magnox power station and the proposals for a new nuclear power station. In order to get a better idea of the problems at Chapelcross one of my first actions was to carry out a baseline survey of the radioactive contamination around the area in order to set some priorities for further research and action. Please note that this reports has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

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77.8 kilobytes



inc image UKAEA Harwell: Issues and Public Safety – A report for the Local Liaison Committee

May 1990

A report for the Harwell Local Liaison Committee on the problems of the site that they were supposed to be the watchdog for. It caused a stir at the time, and the publicity caused the AEA a lot of headaches and clean-up costs. Please note that this report has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

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184.4 kilobytes



inc image AEA Harwell – Nuclear and Environmental Hazards

April 1990

Written for Southern Campaign to Resist the Atomic Menance (SCRAM), an article on the hazards of the Harwell Laboratory site in Oxfordshire

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
889.6 kilobytes



inc image The Safety of the UKAEA Harwell Establishment and in particular the Safety of the Harwell Materials Testing Reactors

December 1989

A report produced for the House of Commons Energy Select Committee (and subsequently referred to officially as "the Mobbs report"). It led to a lot of denials from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), but the fact that the issues had been brought out in front of a Commons committee meant that the pressure was on the UKAEA to live up to the bland assurances given on their behalf by the HSE. Please note that this report has been converted from a now redundant file format and so the pagination has been lost, along with any graphics.

file icon click to download Paul Mobbs/MEI resource
232.1 kilobytes