Saturday, 06 February 2016

Councillor quits in nuclear dump row

By Will MetcalfeA SENIOR member of Cumbria County Council’s cabinet has resigned following the decision not to search for a nuclear repository in the county.


Councillor Tim Knowles, who represents Cleator Moor North, has stepped down from his position as a member of the council’s cabinet following the decision on January 30.

Cllr Knowles has served as the chairman for the Managing Radioactive Waste Safely Partnership, the organisation that was leading the search for a site for the prospective repository.

Cllr Knowles, a member of the Labour group, refused to comment on his resignation and instead issued a copy of his speech made during yesterday’s meeting.

He said: “Given this cabinet’s decision on the key Managing Radioactive Waste Safely process, I believe it will no longer be possible for me to deliver the best outcomes for Cumbria from my areas of responsibility, within this joint administration.

“As you know from the reaction to that decision, my proposal to exclude the National Park from planned geological research and to concentrate investigations around the Sellafield site, has substantial support in West Cumbria and elsewhere.

“However, in deciding not to carry out any further research and in the comments used to justify that decision, I believe that a perception has now developed, that under the current combined leadership, this authority is not a positive partner for the energy industries their investors, government and most importantly, the people that I and many of my colleagues represent.”

Cllr Knowles will continue to serve as a councillor and a replacement cabinet member will be appointed before the next meeting on March 14.


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