HC Deb 04 March 1997 vol 291 c587W
Mr. Llew Smith

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the recent report by the geosciences advisory unit of Southampton oceanography centre relating to alleged radioactive contamination around RAF Greenham Common base. [18340]

Mr. Soames

As this report was issued only very recently, it has not yet been possible to assess in detail all the information it contains. We are, however, pleased to note that the conclusions of this independent study broadly substantiate the findings of the National Radiological Protection Board report which was published in December last year. The results relating to the Greenham Common and Newbury areas must be particularly reassuring to local residents and provide further confirmation that there was no truth in last year's irresponsible allegations of a nuclear weapon accident.

The tentative evidence regarding man-made radioactivity in the immediate environment of AWE Aldermaston must be compared with the extensive environmental survey data held at AWE and published annually before any proposals for yet further work can be considered.