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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 May, 2004, 05:31 GMT 06:31 UK
Call to end nuclear subs storage
Nuclear submarine
Space is running out for decommissioned nuclear subs
The Ministry of Defence is being urged to find a new site for the storage of the radioactive parts of Britain's decommissioned nuclear submarines.

The call comes in a report into public opinion of proposals to handle the work in Plymouth's Devonport Dockyard.

The consultation was carried out for the MoD by the University of Lancaster into Britain's 27 nuclear powered submarines.

Eleven are already in storage, four of them afloat at Devonport.

Population centres

The consultation asked local people what they thought about the work being done at Devonport and three other sites around the UK.

It found the vast majority of people did not want it done near population centres.

The report recommends that the MoD looks for sites elsewhere for the storage, intact and on land, of the reactor compartments once they have been cut from the submarines.

It also says transport of radioactive waste should be minimised but that it could be acceptable if it is part of the best option.

It recommends that no further nuclear powered submarines are built until a long-term solution is found and that guarantees are given prohibiting the import of decommissioned submarines from overseas.

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