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Members of Tywnald to visit Sellafield 15 August 2003

Minister for Local Government and the Environment, Hon. Pamela M. Crowe, MLC, will be leading a delegation of Manx Parliamentarians on a fact-finding visit to Sellafield.

The Minister said, "Tynwald Members are concerned about the activities at Sellafield and I made a commitment to provide Members with an opportunity to see for themselves. Hon. Clare Christian, MLC; Mr. Eddie Lowey, MLC; Mr. Martyn Quayle, MHK; Captain Andrew Douglas, MHK; and Mr. Phil Gawne, MHK, will be able to visit any areas that they have particular interest in and will have an opportunity to discuss areas of concern with the senior management of the site and to meet with staff and Trade Union representatives. We will also be meeting with Professor John Heywood, National Health Service Regional Medical Physicist, and with Councillor David Moore, Chair of the Sellafield Local Liaison Committee.

Sellafield is a vast site and one day will be devoted to visiting areas of the site we have asked to see, accompanied by our own Nuclear adviser, Dr. Paul McKenna, who, of course, closely monitors all activities at Sellafield".

The Minister commented, "I will be interested to see the progress that has been made on decommissioning since my last visit, when good progress was being made on decommissioning obsolete plant. It is the policy of the Government of the Isle of Man to seek the closure of Sellafield, but we must ensure that the Plant is safety decommissioned before that can happen."

The itinerary includes visits to the Medium Active Concentrate Tanks which hold the Technetium-99 waste, various older buildings in the process of decommissioning, the Enhanced Actinide Removal Plant which 'cleans' the effluents before discharge, the THORP reprocessing plant and the Waste Vitrification Plant.

Notes for Editors: Media representatives are invited to a briefing for the members to be held on 19th August at 10.00am in Committee Room 1 in Murray House. The briefing will be a presentation by Dr Paul McKenna on the activities on the site and the implications for the Island followed by an opportunity for questions and discussion.

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