asked the Secretary of State for the Environment by what means he ensures that the licensed limits for activity and quantity of radioactive waste disposed of to air, land or water are adhered to in England, Wales and Scotland.
Disposals of radioactive waste are subject to controls under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960. The certificates of authorisation issued under it contain limitations and conditions designed to ensure that the effects of disposal are regulated in accordance with the internationally recommended standards of radiological safety. Inspectors appointed under the terms of the 1960 Act visit premises to check that conditions of authorisation are being complied with. Where appropriate, they take check samples of effluents for independent analysis and of environmental materials.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if it is intended to increase the licensed limits for beta/gamma activity of radioactive waste disposed of at Drigg.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he has any plans to exempt from the authorisation requirements of the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 the disposal of carbon-14, tritium or plutonium-241; and if he will make a statement.
Section 6(5) of the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 empowers the Secretary of State for the Environment to make orders which exclude particular types of waste from the requirements for authorisation of disposal. In general, such orders are made where the radiological risk arising is negligible. During the corning months, it is proposed that several statutory instruments should be made which would exclude organic scintillation fluid containing very low levels of carbon-14 and tritium and also certain types of signs and instruments; apart from these proposals there are no current plans to change the existing authorisation requirements in respect of carbon-14, tritium and plutonium-241.