Five years on, Fukushima still fuels nuclear energy debate

Bedford Green Party mark the fifth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster PNL-160316-094624001
Bedford Green Party mark the fifth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster PNL-160316-094624001

The need to invest in clean energy sources was highlighted by the Bedford Green Party as it marked the fifth anniversary of Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The group met at the Bedford Against Nuclear Dumping (BAND) monument near the former Elstow Storage Depot, which the Government chose as a possible site to bury nuclear waste in the early 1980s.

Following BAND’s campaign the plans were dropped.

Bedford Green Party spokeswoman Lucy Bywater said with the uncertainty and economic controversy over the UK’s Hinckley Point nuclear power station, it is “pertinent to consider how we’d like our energy future to look”.

She said: “Although accidents at nuclear power plants are rare, the consequences are so devastating and far reaching that it’s surely time to turn our back on this industry.

“And nuclear is not cheap, Hinckley is set to be the most expensive project ever by a very long way.”

The Fukushima plant went into meltdown after an earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan’s north-east cost.

The clean up is estimated to be running into tens of billions of dollars, while the problem of what to do with the nuclear waste has not been solved. About 100,000 people have had to move from the surrounding area as it is still highly contaminated.

Lucy said: “We need to be serious about investing resources into energy efficiency and into clean, safe renewable energy.”