In response to a FOI request about how MOD responded to the recommendations contained in the 2000 report by RWMAC “RWMAC's Advice to Ministers on The Ministry of Defence's Arrangements for Dealing with Radioactively Contaminated Land“. It is clear from the response to action 12 that the MOD has no intention of identifying what contamination exists on land that it has disposed of prior to the LQA programme such as Dalgety Bay.
It is also clear from the response to action 12 of the RWMAC report that MOD believes this responsibility lies with Local Authorities. Local Authorities hold few if any records that would assist them in identifying contamination on former MOD sites let alone the financial resources to support such activity.
I believe it is important for the safety of the environment and the public, that risks from defence related pollutants are identified and if necessary remediated. Examples of such pollutants are :-
- radioactive substances such as radium,
- chemical weapon residues such as mustard gas,
- organic solvents,
- explosives and ammunition
- toxic heavy metals such as mercury, lead and cadmium
RWMAC ACTION PLAN page 3
“MOD should give thought to the feasibility of compiling information on disposals of land predating the LQA programme, where radioactive contamination might have been involved.”
“The introduction of EPA 1990 Part 2A places the responsibility for inspecting land with the local authority to identify land contamination.”