The origin of Britain's civil nuclear programme is closely linked with nuclear weapons. The first reactor - the "Windscale Piles" at Sellafield, began producing plutonium for nuclear weapons 1950. Britain's first commercial reactor - Calder Hall at Sellafield - was a dual-purpose reactor, with the main purpose being the production of plutionum for Britain's nuclear weapons. The same applies to the second commercial reactor at Chapelcross.
Later reactors were primarily built for the production of electricity, and in April 1995 the UK Government announced that all production of plutonium for weapons purposes had ceased.
At its peak in 1997, about 26% of Britain's electricity was generated by nuclear power. This has now gone down to less than 20%, and only 16% in 2009.
At present, the government wants to build new nuclear power stations at eight sites - all of which are existing nuclear sites. However, opposition to nuclear power is again growing. This website provides information for the growing anti nuclear power movement in Britain, with a special focus on nonviolent direct action against nuclear power.
30 Jun 2011 - 23:00
The Stop Hinkley campaign will be raising the issue of the dangerously cosy relationship between the nuclear industry and the government at a meeting in London next week. This follows revelations that government officials tried to play down the potential effect of the Fukushima accident in Japan on the UK’s nuclear ambitions.
15 Jun 2011 - 11:45
With Italy being the latest European country to reject nuclear power, a coalition of anti-nuclear groups in Britain has announced plans to hold a mass non-violent blockade of Hinkley Point nuclear power station on 3rd October. The plant, near Bridgwater in Somerset, is expected to be the site of the first new nuclear power station, if current plans go ahead.
28 May 2011 - 09:49
Hinkley Point is the first of eight proposed sites for nuclear new build to go ahead. We stopped them here before, and we can do it again. If they fail at Hinkley, it is unlikely the “nuclear renaissance” will have the momentum to continue.
A non-violent blockade of Hinkley Point nuclear power station in Somerset
On 3 October 2011 we will – with hundreds of people – non-violently blockade the access to Hinkley Point nuclear power station for one day.
16 May 2011 - 23:00
Groundbreaking research examines convergence of nuclear and climate threats and its implications for global security
Hamburg, Germany, 17th of May: The World Future Council (WFC) released its latest report today, entitled Climate Change, Nuclear Risks and Nuclear Disarmament: From Security Threats to Sustainable Peace. It is the outcome of groundbreaking research by a member of the WFC Peace and Disarmament Working Group, Prof. Dr. Jürgen Scheffran of the University of Hamburg.
1 May 2011 - 22:46
Rory Walker of the Heysham Anti Nuclear Alliance talks about the legal challenge to the government's justification for new nuclear.
26 Apr 2011 - 23:00
Friends of the Earth action earlier today:
No, not a terrorist incident this time, but inflation of another nuclear white elephant. Olkiluoto and Flamanville anyone?
See Friends of the Earth's blog post at http://www.foe.co.uk/news/elephant_stunt_30558.html
25 Apr 2011 - 23:00
(Endorsed by 87 Japanese NGOs)
April 26, 2011
The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, precipitated by the huge earthquake and ensuing tsunamis that hit eastern Japan on March 11, has created fear of radiation exposure and radioactive contamination not just in Japan, but throughout the world.
24 Apr 2011 - 23:00
On 26th April 2011, 25 years on from Chernobyl, Radiation Free Lakeland will lay three crosses outside Carlisle Cathedral.
Windscale-Never Again? Chernobyl-Never Again? Fukushima-Never Again?