Wylfa Newydd

UntitledToday is full of news that an Abergavenny-based “independent” think tank says that a new nuclear power station on Anglesey will be great for Wales.

I doubt it.

I have commented about nuclear issues several times already but it’s opportune to do so again. One very relevant post is Hinkley Point and Fukushima (21March) in which I note that the company planning to build the new station was slated by a Japanese parliamentary investigation for having cut corners on safety.

The reason Hitachi is so desperate to build here because, following the Fukushima disaster, it can no longer do so in Japan.

A second relevant post is Radioactive Waste (posted on 24 March). In it I drew attention to the fact that the UK government has changed the regulations for dumping radioactive waste. Having failed to persuade experts and the Cumbrian County Council that dumping radioactive waste is safe – anywhere – the government (without debate) has changed the rules to avoid public scrutiny.

Jill Gough’s comment on this post is worth reading.

All the instant experts have been at it today, declaiming that Wylfa Newydd will bring jobs and prosperity. But none that I have heard have compared this with generating electricity from renewables – such as the free-standing tidal turbines I advocated on 18 March in Barrage or Lagoon?

A similar level investment in renewable energy would generate at least as many jobs without the risk of a Fukushima, Chernobyl or Three Mile Island hanging over future generations. This is a deplorable venture into the unknown and future generations will curse us if allowed to proceed. fukushimachildbigger


Wales needs parity with Scotland

Following the referendum in 2014, Scotland is getting more powers and funding. Currently, Wales is underfunded by more than £1 billion/year. Whatever your view on devolution, Wales must not fall further behind.

I agree with Plaid Cymru’s demand that Wales should have equivalent powers to Scotland and receive the same financial settlement. The way things are going, Scotland, Northern Ireland, London and even Manchester are going to receive more powers and funding than Wales.

Plaid Cymru symbolSadly, the Labour Party in Wales sees Plaid Cymru as an enemy – I  don’t. see Plaid as an ally to win concessions for Wales. It is scandalous that Westminster parties seem happy to underfund Wales.

Many people don’t appreciate that Torfaen Council’s recent increase in rates and their cuts in services all result because Westminster has cut the grants to Wales – and, in turn, this  has cut Torfaen’s income. This is no longer a side issue for us in Torfaen – we have to be as strident on this issue as Plaid Cymru.