§ 25. Mr. McGrady
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what further action he intends to take to mitigate the effects of the discharge of radioactive waste into the Irish sea by British Nuclear Fuels Ltd.
§ Mr. Moynihan
British Nuclear Fuels plc is undertaking a major investment programme to reduce discharges from Sellafield. As a result of this programme, which will extend into the 1990s, liquid discharges have been reduced to less than a sixth of their 1979 level. Together with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, my Department has introduced a new authorisation limiting radioactive liquid discharges from Sellafield into the sea. The authorisation, which came into effect on 1 July 1986, set tighter annual, quarterly and two-day limits on the overall amounts of radioactivity which may be discharged into the sea and, for the first time, set specific limits on a wide range of individual radionuclides that are of radiological significance or that account for a large proportion of the discharge in activity terms. The authorisation will be reviewed in two or three years' time and again when the current investment programme is completed.