Published: 31 Oct 2010 09:303 comments

Ayrshire Power have categorically denied fears raised by Fairlie Community Council that their new coal power plant development could cause cancer.

Fairlie Community Council chairman David Telford pointed out that similar power plants around the world have produced harmful, potentially deadly effects into the atmosphere, and have called for the issue to be investigated as a matter of urgency.

Mr Telford said: “We are concerned about the effect that this proposed development would have on the human life around these parts.

“There is emerging evidence, world wide, of cancer pockets and birth defects arising as a consequence of the radionuclides (Uranium and Thorium) that are released by modern coal plants."

Muir Miller, Project Director for Ayrshire Power, said: “

“The current UK standards of emissions control for coal-fired power stations mean that radiological emissions from a plant designed and operated to the current standards are miniscule.

“As far as emissions from the chimney at the proposed Hunterston facility are concerned, these would be tightly controlled under the terms of a PPC Operating Permit issued by SEPA. Ash and emissions controls in some countries operating coal-fired plants are not subject to the same high standards as in the UK.”

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  • AlanGraham
    Unregistered User
    Oct 31, 10:10
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    I still find it incredulous that, in 2010, we're talking about building a range of new coal power plants.

    The primary reason for this is that it's easier to placate anti-nuclear protestors with stupid, short-sighted measures like this, rather than engage them in a serious debate about what power generation options make the most sense.

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  • James Perman
    Unregistered User
    Nov 22, 15:41
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    Well if you think that a coal-fired power station is a potential cause of cancer because of some radionuclides in the emissions, then what do you think is going to happen when Hunterston becomes a nuclear dumping ground?

    There is now a proposal to dig a few deep holes at Hunterston and bury nuclear waste from (at least) all over Scotland at this one location. This will include Chapelcross power station which is being decommissioned, as well as Hunterston A, and Hunterston B and Trorness when they are subsequently decommissioned. There is also a possibility that this will also be used as a dumping ground for radioactive materials from Faslane and Coulport as well as waste from dismantled submarines at Rosyth.

    The cancer scares connected with a coal fired power station pale into insignificance with that of a nuclear power station and will be miniscule compared to the possible cancer related health issues of a nuclear dump!

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  • Gary Hughes
    Unregistered User
    Dec 12, 21:21
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    Coal power stations produce far more radioactive material than nuclear power. Additional hazardous by products produced by coal power stations include arsenic, chromium, cobalt, lead and mercury. In addition to this, Coal power stations are responsible for acid rain and greenhouse gas emissions. A number of studies have been carried out into the effects of coal and nuclear power and interestingly, waste produced by a coal power station is actually MORE radioactive than waste produced by a nuclear station. In fact, in producing the same amount of energy, a coal power station emits 100 TIMES more radioactivity! If we had gone wholly with nuclear instead of burning fossil fuels we would not have the global warming problem our future generations are left to deal with.

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