Dear Ministry of Defence,
Upon my assumption that such information exists in recorded form and upon my belief that such information could be disclosed under the provisions of The Freedom of Information Act 2000 and / or more likely; the provisions of The Environment Information Regulations and is not considered by me to fall within matters that could be described as "Defence of the Realm" or "decisions of Royal Prerogative" or be protected by The Official Secrets Act(s) - though I acknowledge some specific or precise detail may need to be redacted or withheld, either because it would otherwise disclose personal data or for the protection of ongoing military operations - I am confident a substantive response is possible and is so-possible within the Statutory time-limit(s) imposed, I Ask in light of the fact that It is public-knowledge that each of the armed forces produce and / or own waste that is radioactive:
(1) Does the MoD (Or the British Army; The Royal Air Force; The Royal Navy either individually or collectively, including subordinate agencies or departments / divisions etc. of the same) have in place a plan or policy or other written intention(s) to - either: (a) Construct a Deep Geological Disposal Facility for the permanent disposal of (i) Higher Level [Radioactive] Waste; (ii) Intermediate Level [Radioactive] Waste or (iii) Low-Level [Radioactive] and Very-Low-Level [Radioactive] Wastes? Or (b) to enter into a contract in the future with an owner or developer or operator of a Deep Geological Disposal Facility (for radioactive waste) when one becomes available where pursuant to such a contract the Mod and / or any of the armed forces will rent or lease or otherwise take ownership or an interest in space within such a disposal facility?
(2) In either case, (or both), what is the proposed budget(s) (or costs if predetermined) for the permanent disposal of all radioactive waste that is known to exist presently within the Ministry of Defence - taking into account all of the armed forces -and that is predicted to be disposed of by the time a Geological Disposal Facility becomes operational?
(3) The "Owners" of radioactive waste are duty-bound by multiple Legislation and Regulations including European Directives and [in the case of nuclear waste] international laws and treaties to protect human health and the environment by storing waste in such a way so as to prevent (specifically in terms of radioactive waste) any leakage of radiation into the atmosphere. I ask therefore: (a) Where any of the armed-forces or the MoD or Government (in connection with the Military) has sought or has been offered written legal advice or opinion from any in-house Counsel or The Attorney General or the Attorney General's Office or from any other source, including from foreign Heads of State or other country's armed forces that shows that The United Kingdom or The Ministry of Defence is or could arguably be under a LEGAL OBLIGATION to [permanently] DISPOSE of radioactive wastes of any grade, but in particular Higher Level Waste and Spent Fuel, for example as produced and held by The Royal Navy at for example, Devenport? -
Note: by "Legal Obligation to Dispose of..." I mean: A law that could bind the Mod or The UK that imposes a requirement over mere storage to permanently dispose of the relevant waste.
(b) If such written legal advice is held by the Mod and if the advice is not protected or privileged advice, please disclose that or those documents subject to redaction of personal data.
For the sake of clarity and for members of the public reading this request; I rephrase my questions as follows:
Question 1: (a) Does the MOD have a plan to build a Geological Disposal Facility ? and;
(b) Does the MOD plan to rent or buy space at someone else's Facility when one becomes available?
Question 2: How much will the plans cost?
Question 3: (a) Has the MOD ever been told they are not allowed to temporarily store radioactive waste / nuclear waste for ever?
(b) Tell me about that obligation...
Darryl J Lee (Mr.)
Dear Mr Lee,
Your request has been logged under our reference 2016/01432 and the target date for response is 29 Feb 2016.
Information Rights team
Ministry of Defence
Dear Mr Lee,
Please see attached a response to your FOI request, ref: FOI2016-01432.
Policy Secretariat (Submarines)