*SAVE SUFFOLK'S HERITAGE COAST & WILDLIFE SITES* SAY NO TO SIZEWELL C

by Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

*SAVE SUFFOLK'S HERITAGE COAST & WILDLIFE SITES* SAY NO TO SIZEWELL C

by Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)
Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)
Case Owner
Together Against Sizewell C (TASC) is a community-based group of like-minded individuals who have been actively campaigning on a voluntary basis, since 2013, to stop EDF’s plans to build Sizewell C.
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Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)
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Together Against Sizewell C (TASC) is a community-based group of like-minded individuals who have been actively campaigning on a voluntary basis, since 2013, to stop EDF’s plans to build Sizewell C.
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Latest: Jan. 21, 2023

High Court set date for TASC's legal challenge to Sizewell C's DCO

TASC now have a date for the judicial review hearing and have issued the following press release that sets out the details:-                

TASC Deputy Chair P…

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Together against Sizewell C (TASC) Urgently Needs Your Help.

Please act now to prevent the brutal industrialisation, decimation and devastation that will result from building, operating and decommissioning EDF Sizewell C: two unnecessary nuclear reactors on Suffolk's fragile Heritage Coast within the precious landscape of Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, permanently burying 15 acres of Sizewell Marshes Site of Special Scientific Interest under concrete as well as having potentially catastrophic impacts on the adjoining RSPB Minsmere nature reserve. Much flora and fauna which is part of the web of life in this unique location will be under severe threat and will be lost. 

Hinkley Point C's 24/7 construction including impact on dark skies. Sizewell C will be a replica.

Sizewell C is not a 'done deal'- 

  •  it requires a nuclear tax on energy bills and direct UK government investment as debt-crippled 84% French government owned EDF cannot provide funds to meet the £20+ billion build cost;
  • it has no proven supply for up to 2.8 million litres mains water needed daily during the 60 year operational period;
  • the design of the crucial sea defences has not been finalised;
  • geotechnical trials to test the suitability of the ground have not been undertaken;
  • the project needs licences from the Office of Nuclear Regulation and permits from the Environment Agency.

With the support of Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth and the help of TASC's lawyers, Leigh Day, we will apply every legal means possible to stop the Sizewell C madness.

Your help and financial contributions are crucial -  every little helps and will be gratefully received.

On the 8th July 2022 the Secretary of State for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy is due to announce his decision whether to grant planning permission for the construction of EDF's unproven EPR technology at Sizewell. Recent and frequent official statements lead TASC to believe the decision is a foregone conclusion and approval is likely to be given.

TASC require £20,000 now in order to meet the initial costs of our experts and legal team with their review and assessment of the rationale for the Secretary of State's decision. If their advice is positive, TASC intends to renew its fundraising appeal to cover the costs of launching their legal case. Therefore, any donations now, in excess of our starting fundraising target, would be gratefully received.

  

 

Eroded dunes in front of the Sizewell C site after a storm in Spring 2022 

Sizewell C will be sited next to Sizewell B on one of the fastest eroding coastlines in Europe, vulnerable to climate change induced rising sea levels, increased storm surges and more extreme weather events. The 14 metre sea wall will encroach on the Heritage Coast's county wildlife site, with the potential to be built higher when the impacts of climate change take hold. EDF have only seen fit to model climate change impacts and flood risk to 2140 even though lethally hot and radioactive spent fuel is expected to remain on site till the late 2100s.

The Suffolk Heritage Coast, Sizewell Marshes SSSI, RSPB Minsmere (the UK’s flagship rare bird and wildlife sanctuary) and the marine environment are all under threat, as well as acres of rural Suffolk, which if Sizewell C proceeds, will become one of the largest building sites in Europe.

The Sizewell C site from this to...............................

Sizewell C will permanently change this beautiful, tranquil and fragile area to one of brutal industrialisation. It will add huge amounts of carbon to the atmosphere during the 12 plus years of construction which, incredibly, may have to be provided with water from an environmentally damaging desalination plant for 60 years of operation, a technology EDF itself described as inappropriate. Sizewell C will leave a lethal legacy of radioactive waste on our crumbling shore to be guarded for hundreds of years by generations as yet unborn. Read more… and watch Suffolk Coastal Friends of the earth video…

“Minsmere is not just a nice nature reserve, it’s a place where extinct birds came back and danced. That’s not poetry, that’s scientific fact”                                                                             Simon Barnes Author and Journalist.



TASC Urgently Need Your Help and will be extremely grateful if you could donate whatever you can for TASC to retain experts and legal assistance from Leigh Day as we move forward with our continued efforts to stop EDF’s Sizewell C.



Update 10

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Jan. 21, 2023

High Court set date for TASC's legal challenge to Sizewell C's DCO

TASC now have a date for the judicial review hearing and have issued the following press release that sets out the details:-                

TASC Deputy Chair Pete Wilkinson advised "TASC are delighted that we now have the date for our judicial review hearing in the High Court. A two-day hearing has been set for Wednesday 22nd  and Thursday 23rd March 2023 which will give our legal team the opportunity to present Together Against Sizewell C's full legal arguments. TASC remain shocked that the Secretary of State went against the considered and reasoned view of the independent Planning Inspectorate and granted development consent in a potentially legally flawed manner. We have real concerns that the environmental impacts of Sizewell C have not been properly assessed and we have every confidence in our legal team to bring this to the Court's attention                

“TASC has the support of Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth and Stop Sizewell C in this vitally important battle for the soul of the Heritage Coast. Like so many other individuals and organisations in the area, they have worked tirelessly to demonstrate the flaws in government's plans for more nuclear development on this fragile coast and their support for TASC's legal challenge demonstrates a determination and unity of purpose among opposition groups which strengthens our collective resolve to see off Sizewell C and EDF's plans to disfigure and ruin this part of Suffolk."                

Rachel Fulcher of Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth commented "Our members remain appalled that  potential risks to Suffolk's wildlife and damage to their special habitats have not been taken into account, despite warnings from Natural England.                 

Paul Collins of Stop Sizewell C said "The right and proper conclusion to this legal challenge would be that the planning decision by former Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng is found to be unlawful. But Sizewell C is also an intensely political project, and we are deeply concerned that the Suffolk Coast could start to be torn up before this concludes, or before a Final Investment Decision that may never be reached. We want assurances from EDF and the government, who now co-own the project, that this won't happen. Communities are owed that peace of mind after all we have already been put through."          

Pete Wilkinson added "TASC are extremely grateful to all those who have supported our campaign, especially during what are proving to be difficult times for so many."

End of press release

Now TASC have a court date, we need additional funds to finance the legal team's costs for the JR hearing. We are pleased to confirm that we have received generous financial support from individuals and organisations outside of this Crowd funder. As a result we have been able to reduce our Crowd Justice stretch target from £60,000 to £34,000. Essentially TASC require a further £10,000 to meet all of our costs. If you are able, please contribute what you can to enable us to see this campaign to its ultimate conclusion.

Update 9

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Dec. 13, 2022

Postponement of court hearing scheduled for 14th December

The oral renewal hearing to consider TASC’s judicial review application, scheduled for 14th December in the High Court in London, has been postponed due to the judge's ill-health. We are waiting to hear from the court about the new date and we will update you once we know.

As always, TASC are extremely grateful for your continued support especially during, what are proving to be difficult times for many.





Update 8

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Dec. 7, 2022

Comment on recent government announcements re Sizewell C

As you will probably be aware, Grant Shapps, the latest Business Secretary, recently visited Sizewell to mark the signing of contracts with EDF for £679 million of government investment in the Sizewell C development, which confirmed the announcement made in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement. The UK government and EDF are now in a 50:50 partnership in the Sizewell C development, a white elephant financial sink hole on Suffolk's eroding coast. This step means the UK government and EDF will jointly own the project (for now) and will collectively pursue a Final Investment Decision - still 12 to 18 months away – which means they need to find investors willing to stump up the remaining 60% of the total construction costs, which according to the government’s own figures could be anything between £26 billion and £43 billion. This would result in the UK being required to commit between £5 billion and £8.5 billion of public money to make good its 20% share. The government, having actively pursued Chinese Investment in the UK are now using UK taxpayers’ funds to eject EDF's controversial partner China General Nuclear from the project and have the audacity to try and spin this as a positive move rather than admit it was bad decision making in the first instance.

Grant Shapp’s visit follows Boris Johnson and Kwasi Kwarteng's shameful precedent of purposefully avoiding any discussion or interaction with those directly affected by the proposed Sizewell nuclear development. Both Johnson and Kwarteng visited just days before they were ousted from their jobs, perhaps a menacing omen for Shapps.

Together Against Sizewell C said:There is nothing new in terms of funding – this announcement still doesn’t go beyond the £700m already promised, followed by a lot of sticking plasters to protect the government from the criticism of doing nothing for years to drive down electricity on the demand side. A pathetic response from a delusional government that is long past its sell-by date.

‘The government’s own risk assessment forecasts that Sizewell C may cost up to £43 billion – yet another example of this government’s willingness to squander £billions of public money on a project that may never operate as it still requires the resolution of EDF’s inability to secure a permanent and reliable supply of a potable water.

‘To say Sizewell C will provide energy independence and security is laughable – a French flawed design, which is likely to never operate at full capacity, French developers, overseas finance and fuelled by uranium sourced from overseas.

‘The entire plan is a mess of disinformation, incomplete data and represents an investment that no-one in their right mind will touch with a bargepole. Except, that is, a delusional, nuclear-obsessed government which is liberal with the use of public money to pretend that its energy policy will allow us to meet climate change targets. It won’t. This makes TASC’s application for a judicial review of the approval of the Sizewell C development consent order carry even greater importance.’

TASC’s press release was reported by the BBC Online and the Big Issue.

Since the last update, TASC have been busy addressing the matter of EDF’s applications to have 2 existing agricultural water abstraction licences transferred so that EDF can use the water on the Sizewell C construction site for industrial purposes. More details are available in TASC’s submission to the Environment Agency. We are also still actively engaging with the Office for Nuclear Regulation, the Dept for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Environment Agency on Sizewell C and nuclear matters generally.

However, TASC’s main focus at this moment in time is working with our lawyers, Leigh Day, in preparation for the ‘renewal’ hearing for our judicial review claim to be heard in the High Court in London on 14th December. We are hoping for a positive outcome and will update you once the result of that hearing is known.

As always, many thanks for your continued support.

Update 7

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Nov. 19, 2022

TASC have a court date!

TASC are pleased to advise that we now have a date for the oral renewal hearing of our application for a judicial review of the government’s decision to approve the Sizewell C development. A different judge to the one that carried out the initial review of our JR claim will consider TASC’s arguments on Wednesday 14th December in the High Court in London. We will keep you updated as matters progress.

Since out last update the Sizewell C project has remained a subject of political consideration. On Jeremy Hunt’s appointment as Chancellor, TASC, along with many others, wrote to advise the new Chancellor that cancelling government support for Sizewell C was a quick way to save money. However, the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement repeated the commitment made by Boris Johnson a few days before he left office, to a £700 million investment in the Sizewell C project – no mention of the ongoing cost to the UK if the government make the 50% investment that EDF are expecting them to take – a project that government department, BEIS, say could cost up to £43 billion! Please see TASC’s response to the Autumn Statement, TASC’s response on twitter and TASC’s press release that was reported by the BBC.

“Chancellor Hunt says, ‘As Conservatives we do not leave our debts to the next generation’. In reality, Sizewell C will leave ever-increasing debts to many generations as they have to deal with legacy waste amid rising temperatures, sea levels and Black Swan[1] events'."

TASC believe that the Labour Party’s support for Sizewell C does not stand up to any logical scrutiny and seems to be heavily influenced by trades union pressure, even though investment in renewables, alternatives and demand reduction, such as retrofitting insulation in the UK’s buildings, would create tens of thousands of permanent jobs rather than relatively few long-term employment opportunities in nuclear. TASC has written to Kier Starmer advising, 

“…The advantages of adopting a policy which preferences a non-nuclear future are legion. Without even addressing the political wins such a policy would bring, please consider the practical, monetary and societal advantages…”

While TASC are disappointed with the government’s continued support for Sizewell C, we are resolute in taking all legal actions available to stop Sizewell C. As well as the judicial review, TASC are keeping a careful watch on the performance of the Environment Agency and the Office for Nuclear Regulation, both of which agencies are yet to issue environmental permits, site and construction licences the project needs before building can commence. The government will also need to make a Final Investment Decision based on a ‘Value for Money Assessment’, a process that is expected by EDF to take another 12 – 18 months and which will provide further opportunity for scrutiny.

TASC are extremely grateful for your continued support.

 

[1] A Black Swan event is characterised by being unforeseen, extremely rare but of severe impact

 


   


 


   


Update 6

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Oct. 28, 2022

TASC's legal battle for a judicial review continues

TASC's lawyers have applied for an oral hearing of our legal arguments which means that our application for a judicial review of the Sizewell C DCO decision will be considered by a High Court judge in the next few weeks. The court's initial refusal of a hearing for our judicial review claim following a judge's desktop review comes as no surprise as it seems par for the course with most environmentally based legal claims being denied at the first hurdle. TASC have discussed the matter with our legal team and our opinion is that the judge who carried out the review did not properly engage with the arguments. TASC believe we have a strong case and, accordingly, we have used our procedural right to ask for our judicial review claim to be redetermined at an oral hearing in front of a different judge. TASC are grateful to our lawyers, Leigh Day, and the brilliant legal team they have assembled, and, with the support of local NGOs Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth and Stop Sizewell C, we will be using all legal means available to fight the environmentally damaging Sizewell C white elephant.


TASC’s Chairman, Pete Wilkinson, response to the news:

"This decision is a predictable and wholly unreasonable response given the culture that our hopelessly inept government has created through its policy of attacking nature which its sees as an impediment to economic development. There is a presumption today that judicial reviews should be summarily dismissed rather than being used as a forum in which democracy can be seen to be done when there are legitimate grounds, as in the case of Sizewell C, to indicate that an important decision has been wrongly made. 

"But our resolve is only strengthened by this minor setback. It has made us more determined than ever to use the High Court procedure to seek an oral hearing of our case which we believe is strong and comprehensive: the site is potentially unstable, vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, there is no potable water supply for the development; the cumulative environmental impact will be intolerable, devastating and permanent, flying directly in the face of the government's 25 year environmental policy, the Environment Act and any transparent attempts to build a 'greener economy."

Rachel Fulcher, Coordinator of Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth, says

 "We are wholeheartedly behind TASC's determination to seek an oral hearing in their application for a Judicial Review. Once again, important environmental issues have been side-lined and the advice of both Natural England and the Planning Inspectorate rejected, leaving precious habitats and rare species exposed to risk. This is in contravention of the Habitats Directive. We cannot allow the Secretary of State, nor EDF, to get away with this."


Alison Downes of Stop Sizewell C said:

"With the UK's parlous financial position and the Chancellor's warning that 'eye-wateringly difficult' decisions will need to be made to save money, here is an easy one - cancel Sizewell C. Renewables and energy efficiency will help us achieve energy security far more cheaply and quickly, and create many thousands of genuinely green jobs in the process."

Leigh Day solicitor Rowan Smith said:

“We are proud to represent TASC in the local community’s continued fight to help protect Suffolk’s heritage coast and wildlife sites. Our client is understandably shocked that the Secretary of State has gone against the considered and reasoned view of the independent Planning Inspectorate and granted development consent in a potentially legally flawed manner. TASC has very real concerns that the environmental impacts of Sizewell C have not been properly assessed. We intend to do all we can to bring this to the Court’s attention.”

Pete Wilkinson added:

‘"EDF, the government and all those slavishly supporting nuclear power should take note: we will stop Sizewell C, come what may. With our excellent legal team, we will prevail. We thank all who have supported TASC so far and call on those who are able to redouble their efforts to support us and help us raise the necessary funds to defend our coast from the ravages of EDF and its monstrous plans.'"

Update 5

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Oct. 21, 2022

More news on the Sizewell C front

In early September our update confirmed that TASC had submitted a Judicial Review claim in the High Court. We had expected that the RSPB would be similarly challenging the Secretary of State (Kwasi Kwarteng)’s woeful decision to give consent to Sizewell C but, unfortunately, they submitted their claim one day late so had to withdraw their application. In a statement published in the East Anglian Daily Times the RSPB said, "We are obviously devastated, and we can only apologise to those who have supported us throughout the whole process." This leaves TASC to believe we are the only ones challenging the government’s approval of this environmentally damaging project through the courts, making our campaign even more important than ever. We are encouraged by the RSPB who said of TASC’s judicial review application, "They [TASC] will have a strong case with similar areas of concern to the RSPB. We wish them every success."

A further development, as reported in The Times, was the decision on 2nd September 2022 by the Secretary of State for DEFRA in the case concerning EDF’s attempt to renege on its agreement to fit Acoustic Fish Deterrents (AFD) to the cooling water system at Hinkley Point C (HPC). The AFDs are required to reduce the huge number of fish sucked into the intake tunnels leading to their untimely death. There was a lengthy inquiry from 8th to 24th June 2021, that heard very detailed evidence leading to the planning inspector making a confidential recommendation to the Secretary of State DEFRA on 7th December 2021, that EDF’s appeal should be refused. TASC are pleased to say that the recommendation was upheld by the Secretary of State for DEFRA in his decision published nearly ten months later. This decision is important for a number of reasons, not least being the upholding of the original aim to reduce the death toll from the  hundreds of millions of fish and fish larvae that will get sucked into HPC’s cooling water system each and every year of its 60-year operation. It is also important as the cooling water system at Sizewell C, whilst similar to that at HPC, with similar consequences (see TASC report ‘Ecological impact of Sizewell C on Marine Life’ by marine ecologist Dr P. Henderson), was proposed and granted DCO approval without AFDs.

The HPC decision, should have created a precedent for Sizewell and, as TASC requested during the DCO examination, should have been taken into account in the Sizewell C DCO decision. The HPC decision was announced two days after the expiry of the 6-week period allowed for submitting grounds for a judicial review against the Sizewell C decision - all rather convenient for the government in TASC’s opinion!

All is not lost, however, as along with other permits, the Environment Agency, while currently minded to approve, still have to formally decide whether to grant a Water Discharge Activity (WDA) permit for Sizewell C. The WDA sets parameters for the amount of environmentally damaging discharges that the cooling water system can inflict on the marine environment. The Environment agency have recently consulted on the WDA permit and TASC have submitted a strong case saying that the decisions made at HPC regarding the AFD and supporting analysis, should be used to refuse the permit on the basis that EDF are not proposing to use ‘Best Available Techniques’ at Sizewell i.e. they are not planning to fit AFDs. TASC’s representations point out that the impact of dead and moribund fish being discharged into Sizewell Bay can only be minimised by reducing the fish sucked into the intake tunnels.  As with HPC, Sizewell C’s cooling water system will kill hundreds of millions of fish a year for its 60 years of operation. TASC are relying on our environmental regulator to refuse to issue a WDA permit for Sizewell C unless AFDs are fitted, in order to meet their stated remit to “to protect people and the environment”.

TASC’s previous update referred to the visit Boris Johnson made to Sizewell in his last days as Prime Minister with his wish to make a major announcement regarding Sizewell C. As was reported later, his announcement was a damp squib due to the French government not being willing to sign up to the deal proposed. Since then, the UK government have said that they are still in talks with France about Sizewell C. However, there are still many unanswered questions: Who will replace Liz Truss?  How much will Sizewell C actually cost to build? (EDF’s £20bn estimate was over 2 years ago but BEIS’s impact assessment projected costs as being between £26bn - £43bn). At a time of rising government debt, will the UK government want to risk £6bn+[based on taking a 20% interest in a project costing, say, £30bn] on an investment into a project that is driven by political ideology rather than necessity? Will the government risk putting a nuclear tax onto electricity consumers bills when those consumers will see nothing for their money for 10-15 years, if at all? Will the UK government place a £6bn+ bet on an EPR design that may have design flaws, as exposed by the shutdown of Taishan 1 for over a year and the difficulties in building EPR reactors, as demonstrated by Olkiluoto, Flamanville and HPC with their huge cost and time overruns? Will EDF (soon to be 100% nationalised by France) be able to afford a risky £6bn+ investment into an EPR design that the French have already said that they will not build any more of in France? Will investors, for the remaining 60% of the project not funded by the UK government and EDF, be found when any investor who has bona fide ESG investment guidelines will not be able to justify such an environmentally damaging and societally destructive project?

TASC would like to mention recent events in UK politics which have led to the sacking of Kwasi Kwarteng as Chancellor for his incompetence which has been exposed by his ideological pursuit of political dogma with a total disregard to the real world and to the cost to the public purse. Kwarteng’s actions as Chancellor have parallels with his reckless approval of Sizewell C, going against the recommendation of the Planning Inspectorate, a project that could be built but never be able to operate as it doesn’t have a guaranteed supply of potable water, a project borne out of political goals rather than real need, a project recklessly exposing the public purse to the inevitable cost and time overruns that are associated with such risky schemes.

TASC consider the Sizewell C project to be an ‘attack on nature’ and we draw attention to the numerous wildlife charities and NGOs who are currently campaigning to keep those laws that are in place in an attempt to protect our designated wildlife sites – see RSPB’s view on the Attack on Nature   

As TASC’s legal claim progresses through the courts, we still need additional funds to meet the costs of our fantastically supportive legal team. So, TASC would be grateful for any further donations you may be kind enough to make and be pleased if our Crowdfunder could be shared with as many as possible. Our warm wishes to all who have supported our cause to date and to those who are able to help going forward.

As mentioned in TASC’s recent press release, just a couple of miles from the Sizewell C site is an illustration of the fragility of the Suffolk coast…

2016 Thorpeness cliff behind The Red House and its garden buildings with sea defences still partially covered with vegetation

October 2022 after the loss of the garden buildings and sea defences

The Red House, Thorpeness ready for demolition due to coastal erosion October 2022


‘And who would run, that’s moderately wise,

a certain danger for a doubtful prize?’

Rev John Pomfret (1667-1702)


Update 4

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Sept. 4, 2022

TASC submit Judicial Review application to the High Court

TASC are pleased to advise that on 30th August our lawyers, Leigh Day, issued judicial review (JR) proceedings in the High Court in respect of the government's approval of the Sizewell C Development Consent Order application, despite the Planning Inspectorate's recommendation for refusal. This was a result of Leigh Day's and our 3 barristers' intensive review of the government's decision documents, the recommendation report by the Planning Inspectorate and assisted by input from TASC and Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth. The JR application now includes 7 Grounds to justify the proceedings and more details can be found in Leigh Day's press release.

TASC are grateful for all the support that we have received to date. This has enabled us to meet the £20,000 interim crowdfunding target to cover our initial legal costs. However, we still require further financial support as we are approaching another period of intense legal activity. By the end of the third week in September TASC will have received the government and the developer's responses to our court application. Following a review by our legal team we then have two weeks to submit any TASC response deemed necessary, to the court. Consequently we need to increase our cumulative fundraising target to £30,000 by 7th October.

TASC would be extremely grateful if you could contribute to our target if you are able, and share the link to our crowdfunder with family, friends and contacts.

The announcement of TASC's legal challenge to the Sizewell C development coincided with the prime minister's visit to Sizewell in which he attempted to demonstrate government support for Sizewell C. However, all he did was announce a potential £700 million government investment into Sizewell C which was not new money but part of the £1.7 billion announced in the  Autumn 2021 spending review. Boris Johnson's visit was covered in various media outlets including the Independent, the Daily Express and East Anglian Daily Times.

Despite the secrecy surrounding the prime minister's visit to Sizewell, a crowd of at least 100 protesters, organised at very short notice by Stop Sizewell C, were there to boo and jeer his arrival. Boris Johnson dismissed the protesters as 'nimbys' seemingly unaware of their concerns regarding: EDF's flawed EPR reactor design; EDF's financial problems & the woeful state of the French nuclear fleet; the hundreds of millions of fish that the cooling water system will kill annually for 60 years; the legacy radioactive waste dumped on future generations; concerns relating to the environmental devastation Sizewell C will inflict on the AONB, SSSI, RSPB Minsmere, other designated sites & species; the impact of thousands of vehicle journeys on rural roads; ignoring PINS recommendation for refusal regarding there being no mains water supply essential for operation of Sizewell C; etc etc.

    



Update 3

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

Aug. 9, 2022

Start of the Sizewell C Judicial Review Process

TASC are pleased to advise that our lawyers, Leigh Day, have identified several issues that are potential grounds for a Judicial review (JR) application in respect of the Secretary of State’s decision  to approve the Sizewell C DCO application. As a first step in the JR process, a pre-action letter has been sent to Secretary of State, Kwasi Kwarteng. Further details are set out in Leigh Day’s press release.

Leigh Day’s press release was covered in the Guardian on 8th August.

TASC need to urgently raise funds to meet the costs for pursuing the legal case. We have achieved our initial fundraising target but now need to meet the costs of preparation of TASC’s detailed legal arguments that have to be submitted by 31st August. As a consequence, we need to have raised a minimum of £20,000 by the end of August, with any excess over and above that going towards the potential court hearing. Please do give what you can and share our Crowd Justice page with your family, friends and contacts.

Thank you from all at TASC

Update 2

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

July 20, 2022

Govt ignore planning inspectorate recommendation to refuse DCO

TASC are bitterly disappointed, but not totally surprised, that the government has decided to approve the development consent order (DCO) for EDF's Sizewell C, ignoring the planning inspectorate's recommendation against approval. This is despite the avalanche of information submitted from opponents during the 18-month period of the DCO examination, presenting detailed and overwhelming evidence why Sizewell is an entirely inappropriate site and why eye-wateringly expensive and slow-to-deploy nuclear power is not required for meeting our electricity generating or climate change targets.  It seems that even in the midst of a selection process for a replacement for nuclear-fixated Boris Johnson, the attraction of nuclear power continues to mesmerise politicians.

But the fight is not over. In fact, it is just beginning. Sizewell still has to be granted many authorisations, discharge permits and licences before it can be built and begin the long, slow and tortuous path to operational status, should its technical problems be overcome. Another major hurdle is finding investors willing to ignore its tainted environmental credentials due to the impact arising from damage to Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB, the Heritage Coast and Sizewell Marshes SSSI, not to mention the concerns expressed by the RSPB regarding the impact on their internationally famous Minsmere nature reserve, as well as the hundreds of millions of fish and fish fry that will be killed by Sizewell C's cooling water system each and every year for its 60 years of operation.

The project also faces significant legal challenges.  Together Against Sizewell C is actively consulting its lawyers, Leigh Day, on aspects of the approval decision to identify issues on which the law has been transgressed and where identified, we aim to have these tested in the courts by way of judicial review.  TASC are delighted to say that Suffolk Coastal Friends of the Earth has agreed to support us with our campaign in whatever capacity it can. FoE co-ordinator, Rachel Fulcher, told us, 'We look forward to a productive association with TASC on this matter.' TASC anticipate collaborating with other groups, working with our respective legal teams to spread the net of potential challenges as wide as possible. This approach increases our chances of being able to appeal the decision, and our co-ordination will require the opposition to face a wider spread of arguments against their plans and demonstrate that those opposed to this ridiculous development are organised, determined and resolute.

TASC launched this appeal for funds a few days ago in order to cover the initial legal costs of investigating a potential claim for judicial review. The deadline for any such claim is 6 weeks from today (20th July 2022), so we are urging supporters to donate as generously and as quickly as they can.

TASC (formerly Communities Against Nuclear Expansion) has been fighting against further nuclear development at Sizewell for more than a decade. We are committed to winning.  Sizewell C is far from a done deal.  If we can stop Sizewell C, we can bring the government's ludicrous fantasy of a 24Gw new nuclear 'energy security' policy to an end and point it at a 100% renewables future, free from the fears of nuclear radiation, nuclear waste and nuclear contamination.  Please join us and help us reach the first Crowd Justice target of £5,000 and then the £50,000 that we will ultimately need if the case goes to court.

Details of the decision by the government and the recommendation from the planning inspectorate can be found on the planning inspectorate's website at https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/eastern/the-sizewell-c-project/?ipcsection=docs

Thank you for your continued support.

Pete Wilkinson, Chairperson

Update 1

Together Against Sizewell C (TASC)

July 9, 2022

DCO decision day deferred to 20th July

Amidst the turmoil of recent events in Parliament, on the afternoon of 7th July, the day before the Sizewell C DCO decision was due, Paul Scully MP,  the BEIS minister who had been given the responsibility for the Sizewell C DCO decision, announced that the deadline for the decision was being put back to 20th July. Later that evening Paul Scully was moved out of BEIS to the Dept. for Levelling Up!

TASC have written to BEIS to find out who now has the responsibility for this matter and await an answer. The Secretary of State, Kwasi Kwarteng, had previously removed himself from the decision due to his involvement in the Sizewell C financial negotiations with EDF. Bearing this in mind, Paul Scully's announcement was puzzling: "I have decided to set a new deadline of no later than 20 July 2022 for deciding this application. This is to ensure there is sufficient time to allow the Secretary of State to consider the proposal." 

TASC echo the comments of the RSPB who stated: “A delay of two weeks to the decision on whether to build a new nuclear power station at Sizewell makes little sense considering the current political turmoil. Committing future Governments to spending billions of pounds of taxpayer's money on a potentially hugely damaging project like Sizewell C is not a decision that a caretaker government should even consider let alone make. Pushing through something as contentious as Sizewell C, with no reference to wider energy and nature policy strategies is frankly ludicrous.” 

While it would make perfect sense for a Sizewell C decision to be deferred until a new government is formed, our government's intentions cannot be predicted with any certainty so we can only wait and see. Meanwhile, the nuclear lobbyists and vested interests are still pushing heavily to get Sizewell C approved. Reports in the media imply Sizewell C is a 'done deal' but there is still much to fight for and still so many valid reasons why this project should not go ahead. TASC were pleased to see that Lord Deben, Chair of the government's Climate Change Committee, raised concerns about EDF's competence to complete nuclear projects and described the Sizewell C plans as 'ridiculous'. 

Another development this week is the French government's decision to fully nationalise EDF. This leaves us with the crazy situation where the UK government plans to increase UK householder's bills by putting a nuclear tax on UK electricity bills to help EDF fund the building of Sizewell C, providing income to the French state to enable France to subsidise cheaper electricity bills in France!

TASC remain committed to stopping the Sizewell C madness and urgently need your help to reach our target. Please donate whatever you can and share with your family and friends. Thank you for your support.   

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