radioactive waste dumped

Land at Culmore Point was used as a secret dumping ground for radioactive waste in the late seventies and early eighties, it’s been revealed.

State papers have exposed the fact that the area was one of five British government authorised radioactive waste disposal sites in Northern Ireland between 1977 and 1982. The public were not informed.

Previously confidential government files have now revealed for the first time that “two consignments of hospital waste were buried” at the Culmore Point site.

“Total activity was 170 microcuries (6 megabecquerels),” the memo adds.

SDLP Assemblyman Colum Eastwood last night demanded answers from the British Government on the issue, which he says is extremely worrying for Culmore Point residents.

He said: “The British Government has a lot of questions to answer over the revelation that radioactive waste was secretly dumped in our city.

“This is worrying for local residents who deserve to know the truth about what is being buried in their backyards.

“The information revealed in the papers leaves us with more questions than answers. Why was Culmore Point used for the disposal, why was the public not informed and what risk is there to the local community and the environment?

“The origins of the waste is also in question - was this a case of dumping British radioactive waste on Irish soil?”

Mr. Eastwood has also called for results of any testing carried out at the site since the burial to be published by the British Government.

“There will obviously be concerns among local residents as to whether the waste is adequately contained at the site and those fears must be addressed,” he said.

“The British Government must bring clarity to this shocking revelation as a matter of urgency.”