§ Ms. Walley
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) how many radiochemical inspectors' posts(a) filled and (b) unfilled were provided for each year in respect of each organisation; what is the maximum period considered necessary between site visits by these organisations; and what statutory duties exist on these organisations to monitor, record and make public radioactivity emitted off-site from any site subject to inspection;
(2) how many radiochemical inspectors were in post for each year from 1986–87 to 1989–90, respectively for (a) the radiochemical inspectorate prior to April 1987, (b) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution, (c) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution (Scotland), (d) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution (Northern Ireland), and (e) the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food;
(3) how many sites were visited by radiochemical inspectors in each year from 1986–87 to 1989–90; and what is the average period between site visits;
(4) what statutory duties exist on users of radioactive materials as defined in the Radioactive Substances Act to (a) monitor, (b) record and (c) make public in each case amounts of radioactive emitted off site from any site to which radiochemical inspectors have powers of entry or inspection.
§ Mr. Trippier
Organisations subject to control under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 (RSA60) must comply with strict conditions and activity limits imposed by HMIP in certificates of registration and authorisation 181W issued under the Act. The issue of certificates follows careful assessment of the possible environmental impact where appropriate.
Conditions imposed vary with the circumstances, but in the case of radioactive waste disposals, these commonly require monitoring to take place. In all cases proper and detailed records must be maintained. All premises controlled under the Act are subject to scrutiny by HMIP inspectors under powers contained in section 12 of RSA60, to ensure compliance with the terms of certificates issued.
Although there is no requirement in the Act to make information public, details of monitoring of radioactive discharges from the nuclear industry are published annually both by the industry itself and by this Department.
The information available on the number and frequency of site inspections and on staff in the radiochemical inspectorate and HMIP, for the period 1986–87 to 1988–89 is contained in the Department's management information system returns (MINIS 8–10), available in the Library of the House. The MINIS 11 report covering 1989–90 will be placed in the Library in due course.
Matters relating to Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food are the responsibilities of their respective Secretaries of State.
§ Ms. Walley
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many sites in the United Kingdom are subject to powers of entry or inspection by radiochemical inspectors.
§ Mr. Trippier
In England there are some 9,600 premises subject to regulation by HMIP under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 (RSA60). The administration of RSA60 in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is a matter for the respective Secretaries of State for those countries.